Understanding how settling in works
Moving to a new country and new ways of doing things can be challenging for many people and their families. Some people settle in quickly. For others, getting used to life here may take some time.
Support while you settle in
Most people when they settle in a new country go through six distinct stages. This is what is known as the Settlement Curve:
- Forethought: This is a positive time as you plan the move to New Zealand. It is important though to have realistic expectations about your new home country.
- Fun: The excitement of new people and new places means those who arrive feel very positively about their new home.
- Fright: At some point, something will happen. It might be a big thing or a small thing, but it will make you feel frustrated and/or unhappy.
- Flight: If something happens and newcomers don’t have a network of friends or family to call on, they may look at moving on or returning to their country of origin at this point.
- Fight: This is the turning point, when people become realistic about what it’s like to live here and consciously decide to stay and make their life here.
- Fit: By this stage, the challenges are more about the usual things that people think about every day, not about being in a new country. People have decided to stay and contribute and this leads to a sense of ‘fit’ .This means they believe they have made the right decision and New Zealand is where they want to be.
Almost every person who arrives in New Zealand goes through this ‘curve’ of emotions over their first 18 months to two years.
It is important that you, and your employer, understand this process and that it is perfectly normal. It is important too that you feel you have support and that you can ask your local Settlement Support New Zealand contact about anything you need to know to help you settle into your local area.