In Turning International, psychologist and researcher Catherine Transler presents a comprehensive guide to understanding how to find a new balance after relocating in a new country. Using cutting-edge discoveries from the fields of psychology and neuroscience, she explores how a move abroad can drastically alter our emotions and social relationships and offers strategies and exercises that will enable readers to engage in constructive behaviours, adapt to the foreign culture, and take advantage of the new opportunities it offers. Turning International offers many potentially life-changing ways to find the resilience and outlook needed to feel truly fulfilled in an adopted culture.
**** Half of the profits from this book sales will go to Kiva, the organization providing loans for working men and women living in poverty. www.kiva.com.
**** Quotes: "An essential guide... This book should be on the reading list of everyone planning their move to a new country." - Emmy Coffey Mccarthy, Best Expat of the Year 2012 in the Netherlands, Founder and Director of Amsterdam Mamas.
"A book full of understanding and countless exercises designed to get internationals on the road to becoming happy and healthy." - Deborah Valentine, executive director Access Netherlands, and lifelong international
"A must read for anyone who has moved abroad for the first time." - Brian Friedman, CEO The Forum for Expatriate Management, www.totallyexpat.com
"Regardless of how you see yourself - expat, global nomad, serial wanderer, world citizen, cross-cultural, international – Turning International is one book that certainly belongs on your bookshelf." - Linda A. Janssen, www.adventuresinexpatland.com
"I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in equipping themselves with knowledge and actionable guidance to overcome obstacles, deal with ongoing change and build resilience to not only survive but thrive in their life abroad." - Megan Fitzgerald, Expat and International Career Coach, www.careerbychoice.com
Using her profound knowledge in psychology as well as her own experience of expat life, the author has managed to make a thorough summary of possible hurdles an expat (new or not so new) might encounter. Loneliness, making friends, settling in a new country, chronic stress, etc… are indeed quite frequent issues even for the most prepared expat-to-be. Certain chapters of the book are more “hands on” and provide the reader with really useful pointers and tips. Other chapters of the book (that discuss psychology and the research applied to expatriation) are also very accessible to even the non-knowledgeable reader and I finished reading the book with the satisfaction of having learned something (even though I have been an expat for over 20 years). Her book would be a nice addition on the book shelves of relocation offices, expat groups (support groups and social). I also think any family planning a move to a new country will benefit from reading this book and will be better prepared.
A good introduction to the idea of culture shock and settling in, "Turning International" nonetheless is focused significantly on hand-holding and did not have the scope of explaining cross-cultural relocation and interactions for the expat's benefit which I would like to see in such a text. It is a very basic, beginner-level text worth picking up from your library before a move, but not worth purchasing. Such texts should be written not only for the novice expat but the experienced traveller who may yet struggle with adaptation, but Transler's work unfortunately manages to cater to the former and not the latter, providing a challenge for anyone seeking further information and techniques for adaptation.
The inclusion of what felt like 30% anecdotal stories also detracted from the book for me.