Dealing With Reverse Culture Shock After Your Gap Year.

Reverse culture shock refers to the experience of isolation, disorientation and struggle to readjust after you come back from your gap year, and it can hit you hard if you are not careful and should not be ignored or underestimated as it can lead to a lot of serious mental health problems. Here are some ways you can deal with the shock of returning home from your travels around the world.

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Michael Huxley is a published author, freelance travel writer and founder of Bemused Backpacker. He is also a charge nurse by vocation with an interest in emergency nursing and travel medicine, but his real passion is travel. Since finding his wanderlust a decade ago in South East Asia, he has bounced from one end of the planet to another and has no intention of slowing down.

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34 comments on “Dealing With Reverse Culture Shock After Your Gap Year.
  1. I love your videos, really wish you would do more of them! And especially on important topics like these, mental health is such an important topic and rarely gets talked about like it should do.

  2. Kath says:

    I’ve had reverse culture shock after my gap year ended. Life at home can seem so pointless afterward and you need to fill our life with something other than just work and catching up with friends. I’m planning my next trip as we speak!

  3. Kieran O Neill says:

    I have just returned home from over 6 months of travelling and I started to feel some of the things you talk about here so am taking your advice and am planning to do it all over again, except this time I plan on saving enough money to travel for at least a year. I think that alone has given me purpose and made the 9 to 5 work I am doing have some meaning, and that has helped focus everything again. Great video.

    • Thanks Kieran, having that purpose genuinely does help,and also knowing that your adventure isn’t behind you and is certainly not over. That definitely makes the interlude of work worth it!

  4. Erica says:

    Thank you so much for this video! I have been dealing with this myself since we came back from 6 months in Thailand and Vietnam. I really appreciate this post. There are no easy answers but it does help to know you’re not alone.

  5. Jenny says:

    I never knew that reverse culture shock was an actual thing, never mind a thing with an actual name but I’ve felt it myself I just didn’t know what it was at the time. Its actually nice to find out I’m not the only one.

  6. Maria says:

    I find it so hard to relate to those at home after my (just over) gap year. My priorities have completely changed now and it seems like nothing has changed at home, everyone just cares about what is on Netflix or who is seeing who or work. Stuff that I just can’t get myself interested in any more.

  7. Rachel says:

    This so hits home. It took me weeks to semi readjust to being home after my gap year. I burst into tears when my plane took off. unbelievably grateful for the time and experiences I had but just did not want to face the fact they were over. Planning a new trip really helped

  8. AlekZD says:

    Something I never gave much thought, but you’re absolutely right!

  9. Alex Jones says:

    We were away for 2 years and returned home just a few months ago and you are so right, NOTHING at all had changed, same old same old, and it felt like we just didn’t fit in anymore.
    We tried our best, but after a few months home we’re planning to get back on the road – open ended!

  10. Lisa says:

    Wow what an amazing video, it is so true! Thank you for saying this, I honestly thought we were the only ones!

  11. Alan says:

    Amazing, mental health is such an important topic.

  12. Phil says:

    Well said.

  13. Valerie says:

    When my year in South America ended and i came home, the moment I got home I was so lost. It was nice to see family and friends after a year away but there was so many things upsetting me and making me angry as when you come back that sense of loss you talk about is very very real. I lost my freedom. you see everything differently but everyone wants to put you back in that same box as before. I honestly couldn’t fit back in. Now I am in Malaysia and loving it. I feel I have found everything I had lost again.

  14. Celia says:

    There are some really interesting thoughts on this video and my trip doesn’t end for another 6 months (I am in Peru at the moment) but I am definitely going to work on some of these ideas. This has been the time of my life and I really don’t want it to end.

  15. Samantha Creswell says:

    Thank you for making this video. I don’t feel quite so alone now.

  16. Jane says:

    I found one of the best ways I dealt with coming home (and it is really hard I agree) was to cook a lot of the foods I ate when travelling, I love cooking and did a lot of traditional cookery classes while I was away, so cooking all those traditional meals brought back all the smells and tastes of my travels. It really helped bring back all those memories.

  17. Cillian O'Reilly says:

    Great advice. I am really not looking forward to ending my gap year (okay, gap year and a half, I extended it!) But plan to save up for my next big trip so hopefully it won’t be too bad.

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Hi, I'm Michael! I'm a published author, qualified nurse and world travelling professional adventurer! I have spent 15 years travelling over 100 countries and I want to inspire you to do the same! Want to know more about me? Just click here!

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