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Amsterdam

5 Tips to Handle Those Expat Blues 

The expat blues are probably at the epicenter of peoples worries when moving abroad. However, at least in our opinion, this is still seen as a taboo that nobody really wants to bring up. As usual, Apéros Frenchies has your back!  today, I decided to share some top tips with you guys based on my experience regarding this incredible but also not easy journey of being an expat.  Hopefully these tips to handles those expat blues will help you to get through this difficult time!

 

We often move to a new country by ourselves and most often for a job opportunity. We say goodbye to our family, our friends and we jump into a new adventure not knowing exactly how long it will last. But keep in mind that this is an exciting feeling and that’s the reason why we are doing it after all, embrace the adventure and keep in mind that expat blues is part of the journey!

1 – Open your heart to a new relationship

Have you ever noticed that people are usually more open minded in your new adopted country than back home? The expat syndrome is contagious!

When we live abroad, we usually leave everyone behind and start a new life. We don’t have our family, our best mates or ex classmates to hang out with anymore. It’s hard to socialise and make real connections. So, if you don’t take this opportunity to open your heart to unknown people, you can possibly end up by yourself at home feeling this expat blues. (And this is probably not what you are looking for! 😉 

Why not go for some drinks with your colleagues afterwork and take this opportunity to build relationships. You can break the ice by asking some simple questions such as if they already lived abroad or moved to another city. It helps to break the ice and maybe you will find some common points to chat about. The main thing is that you put yourself out there and make an effort, trust me, you won’t regret it! Who knows, maybe you will meet your best mate or long-time partner in the process 🙂

2 – Try to socialise as much as possible

Yes, I know, it’s easy to say and especially during this lockdown time where we’d rather be tucked up and cosy at home.. but don’t be lazy, take this chance and remember that we always meet people for a reason!  Why not ask this easy-going friend to go for a walk / run or to grab a coffee outside and tell him/her to bring a friend or two?

Never underestimate this spontaneous catch up, because sometimes that is how you make the best – unexpected – connections!  By the way, we often say in French “Les amis de mes amis sont mes amis” (My friends’ friends are my friends). Get it? 

 

 

3 – Use social networks

I have seen many times in the different countries/cities I have livedin, people posting in expat groups asking to meet new friends. It takes courage to do it, but I am pretty sure that most of them met some cool people to hang out with or good friends, you have nothing to lose!

Don’t be ashamed to ask, there is absolutely no shame in this! we all went through it and most people would appreciate it because they are probably feeling the same way but are too afraid to take the initiative! 

Even though I personally don’t use Facebook that much anymore it is a great network to share these kind of experiences and to join expat groups in your new city (or just our Apéros Frenchies’ page 😉 )

 

4 –  Exercise the language part of your brain!

What’s worse than living in a country where we don’t speak the language? Living in our bubble doesn’t help much either when trying to integrate! Although some languages can be more attractive than others, you really have to force yourself to learn. Believe me, I’ve been living in Germany long enough without speaking German to understand the struggle. 😉 It took me almost 3 years to start pushing myself to learn. I personally used an online platform :  Babbel and I would recommend it to everyone. It’s easy, playful, and best of all, at your fingertips, online! It really helped me to warm to German and broke down lots of barriers to the language! ;’)

Learn a new language with Babbel

 

 

5 – Organise small events at home

Due to the pandemic, the restrictions are different depending on the country you live in. However, if we cannot meet in restaurants or bars, generally you are still allowed to invite friends over (check the restrictions regarding your country).

I realized that despite this lack of social life/ crazy nights, we’ve been forced to focus on what’s real and it is important. Yes, Friday night fever is cool but what about a nice diner and good wine at home with great people? You can have some good chats, and even learn new things about your friends, such as musical ability!

For instance, it might be a nice idea to prepare a special dish from your country so that your friends can also try something new, this is the core of expat life and experience! Friends are always happy to discover new cultures! Also, don’t hesitate to check out our article  Apéro at Home – Plan the Perfect Apéro!  If, you are running out of time, we definitely advise you to have a look at this website!  HelloFresh delivers great recipes and fresh ingredients to your home each week!

 

 

Don’t worry, if cooking is not one of your best skills, you can still order food from your local restaurant  using the handy app and keep it easy! 

Anyway, use this opportunity to ask friends about their feelings and how they handle their expat blues. You’d be surprised when you ask this question that you won’t be the only one who has mixed feelings! 😉

 

6 – Zoom Apéro from Apéros Frenchies 

You probably know about us because you’ve been to our networking events, right? Or maybe someone told you to come! I will soon talk soon about the reasons that drove me to build Apéros Frenchies and organise those events. However, unfortunately, we cannot organise events right now but some of you asked us about some digital Apéros to connect all of you guys! 

We have already done it a few times and we had a lot of fun! Let us know it is something you would like to do again! 

 

BONUS Treat yourself! (One of my personal favourites)

Who said we couldn’t buy happiness? It’s true that happiness does not comprise of an online order, but it can contribute! (Raise your hand if you agree!) 

Have a look at it, find your perle rare, add it to your Christmas Wishlist and enjoy! 

Cosy Blancket with sleeves 

Bathtube shelf with sucker 

Foot massager 

By the way, maybe you already checked it out before, but we have also written an article about our favourite products to buy especially tailored to a busy expat lifestyle!  

Also, if like me, you crave delicious French chocolate, I can give you a tip, you can definitely buy a bit of happiness here! (That’s my personal secret but don’t shout it too loud!) 

That’s it for today guys! I hope I helped you a bit regarding your expat journey with these top tips to handle these expat blues. Please, don’t hesitate to comment on our Facebook post if you have other ideas to share or would like to find out more and don’t forget to follow our Instagram page too! 

Remember: You mum always told you “don’t talk to strangers!” ? BREAK THE RULES!

St. Germain Spritz – the Perfect Cocktail for Summer

The St. Germain Spritz  has become a crowd favorite at Apéros Frenchies event, and was featured as the welcome drink of choice at several of our events!
The Liqueur is crafted from elderflower blossoms harvested in late spring, making it the ideal summer drink. You all know by now however that while summer may be our favorite season, we’re hosting International Afterwork events year-round. Luckily, there’s a St. Germain cocktail for any occasion. Next time you’re at one of our events feel free to try a St. Germain Spritz! Or if you’re one of our lucky  Frenchies, maybe its time you brought along a bottle of this authentic French liqueur to your next Apéro and put your twist on the welcome drink?  Here a recipe to make your own St Germain Spritz; the perfect cocktail for summer!
 4cl  St~Germain liqueur
 6cl  Dry Sparkling Wine

 6cl  Sparkling Water

Combine all of the ingredients over ice in your favorite glass. Stir gently. Garnish with a lemon twist!

Enjoy your St Germain Spritz! Santé

Any other recipes? Check out ou  DIY Cocktails with Sense of Spirits Cognac,
or a refreshing long drink of  Lillet Tonic  and if you need some inspirations of  “accompagnements”, we’ve got your back!

Feel free to like us on Facebook, follow us on  Instagram, and subscribe to our newsletter to keep up to date with all the Apéros Frenchies events to stay in touch with all your new expat friends? We look forward to seeing you all at our next event!

Liqueur St Germain

Marie Anne You at Aperos Frenchies Amsterdam Launch Oriole Bistro

Oriole Bistro x Apéros Frenchies: Amsterdam Launch

What a way to start the New Year! The gorgeous Oriole Bistro hosted our Amsterdam Afterwork Launch Party inside the Sofitel Legend The Grand Amsterdam.

The Oriole Bistro blends a relaxed ambiance with a stunning interior to create the perfect setting to celebrate Mediterranean cuisine in all of its freshness and simplicity. Located inside the Sofitel Legend the Grand Amsterdam, it was the perfect place to kick off all of the great things to come for our newest International Afterwork Events city!

Thank you to everyone who attended for making the night an incredible success! Thank you to the team at Oriole Bistro for their hospitality and service through the evening. We loved meeting all of you and hope you enjoyed the photo booth provided by our partners Sharing Box.

Thank you again to our partner St. Germain Benelux for sharing this journey with us! We hope you all met lots of new people and had fun. The enthusiasm for our launch was much appreciated. Your patience was especially noted as we worked with out host to move the line along. We definitely can’t wait to see you soon Amsterdam. Be sure to like our Facebook Page to stay updated about our next Afterwork

Photos © by the talented Alize Barthelemy