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  #21  
Old 02.04.2015, 16:54
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

"Some men go thru a forest and see no firewood".

Maybe that`s because they`re gazing ahead and upwards at the trees, not looking down at the ground where the dead firewood is lying in abundance?

Which brings me to think that one should perhaps keep one`s eyes on the ground, and not up in space, hoping for "something" - which is ethereal, in a way?

Which I relate to some basic advice dished out by old-fashioned parents at the dinner table .... "Keep your eyes on your own plate, and mind your own business".

I forgot what this thread is about - but it inspired me to wax lyrical anyway in my own stupid manner.
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Old 02.04.2015, 17:30
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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But how much does that [our childhood and upbringing] really influence the adult life of many educated, well travelled people?
Frankly, I find that a silly question:

You'd be a different person had you been brought up differently. And had you not been among the lucky few from the first world you'd simply be unable (read: not wealthy enough) to be "well travelled", as you put it. Except if, maybe, well travelled would then mean having been to the neighbor town, which requires a 2-day walk.
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  #23  
Old 02.04.2015, 17:43
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

I don't even know what cognitive bias means. Far too intelligent for me by the sounds of it.
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Old 02.04.2015, 18:12
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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I don't even know what cognitive bias means. Far too intelligent for me by the sounds of it.

Cognitive bias means "not normal", alright? Creeps and wierdos, but maybe in a Thom Yorke love song kind of way....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFkzRNyygfk

like '...I don't belong here'. Very lovely.
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Old 02.04.2015, 18:58
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

i don't really buy this too much. to be honest- 'expats' who are well-traveled and don't seek to bring their motherland with them is a bit of an illusion, isn't it? and why do they somehow adjust better than, immigrants- or those who aren't well-traveled or educated or whatnot.

i agree with mathnut fully on this one. i'm not sure there is anything so amazing about people living abroad and getting on with it. people have done it for a very long time- there are people who pine for their old life and former ways and those who don't. likewise there are those who never leave their hometown and are open minded but just happy where they are. funny that the option of living abroad is typically open to not a very broad scale of the world population, so saying that those who do have that chance are anything more than those who don't is a bit of an unfair statement.

i'm not sure that all or even most who live abroad are doing so because they are risk takers. it's switzerland, after all not some completely different way of life or terribly foreign culture. if getting by without brown sugar and having to shut up after 10pm sometimes is openmindedness, what is with all the expats complaining about it anyway .

whatever makes you feel better, i suppose. but i like to stay clear of all this, i'm special because of my circumstances when in the end, it's all just circumstances...
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Old 02.04.2015, 19:35
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

Everybody's special, innit.. If somebody gels with like-minded people, why not have them express it. If risk taking in the form of adjusting to a new place/language/culture/way of life makes some folks feel more global and flock together...why not.

I don't think OP feels particularly superior to those who don't need the same kind of change to practice particular adjustment skills. Some don't even see it as risk taking. And some will never leave their home town.

If people feel like commenting on adjustment skills, it's quite an interesting read for me.

I lived in a few countries and it contributed to who I am now, sure. And the fact I can soak up stuff in a few foreign languages, with that kind of concrete experience instead of trying to learn theoretically.

But that doesn't automatically mean I don't respect those who don't move around. Nor does it make me think they don't learn something else or develop some other kind of wisdom. Nor that there aren't jackasses who no matter how much they travel still stay jackasses.
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  #27  
Old 02.04.2015, 19:38
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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Or maybe - and hear me out on this - maybe not different at all.

I don't see on what basis one can possibly conclude that people who still live in their hometowns must de facto be risk-avoiders, closed-minded, or unwilling to explore... which is the flip side of the coin you're offering.

Comfort zones come in many shapes and sizes and every single grownup I know has left theirs far, far behind. Geography is a particularly visible marker of this but not a particularly profound one.
Or...we chose to move somewhere else, and they didn't. If we wish to be so detailed (cough, nit-picky), that's a difference. No maybes, no needing to hear someone else out. And no, I'm not putting anyone down that chooses to stay put. I'm not "better" than anyone else because I moved somewhere else (I truly don't understand where that came from; I never said it.). I don't quite understand the need to defend those who don't move. All I said was that there was something "different" about expats and proposed some small non-scientific theories about what that difference may be...

They chose their life, we chose ours, and I hope we all have the best outcomes. It takes a lot of different people to make the world spin, simple.
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Old 02.04.2015, 19:59
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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All I said was that there was something "different" about expats
Well, I'd actually agree with you on that one.

In my experience, people who describe themselves as "expats" tend to be jumped up, pretentious twats.

In that respect they're very different to the rest of us normal people.
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  #29  
Old 02.04.2015, 20:04
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

Something like that... Right?
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  #30  
Old 02.04.2015, 20:24
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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Or...we chose to move somewhere else, and they didn't. If we wish to be so detailed (cough, nit-picky), that's a difference. No maybes, no needing to hear someone else out. And no, I'm not putting anyone down that chooses to stay put. I'm not "better" than anyone else because I moved somewhere else (I truly don't understand where that came from; I never said it.). I don't quite understand the need to defend those who don't move. All I said was that there was something "different" about expats and proposed some small non-scientific theories about what that difference may be...

They chose their life, we chose ours, and I hope we all have the best outcomes. It takes a lot of different people to make the world spin, simple.
Mm, actually you kind of did. According to your posts expats (or "most of us at least") are more adaptable, more open-minded, more willing to step outside their comfort zones. Those are usually considered positive qualities. So in sum you're saying that you think expats are different from other people in positive ways. Pop quiz, name a 6-letter synonym for "different in a positive way".

What I'm saying is that expats aren't really that different at all: that people are people, all of us just getting on with our lives in whatever circumstances we find ourselves. It doesn't take a special kind of person to move abroad. It's a demanding transition, sure, but human beings - all of them, not just the special expat-type human beings - have incredible reserves of potential to cope with stuff like this.
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  #31  
Old 02.04.2015, 20:33
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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Or...we chose to move somewhere else, and they didn't. If we wish to be so detailed (cough, nit-picky), that's a difference. No maybes, no needing to hear someone else out. And no, I'm not putting anyone down that chooses to stay put. I'm not "better" than anyone else because I moved somewhere else (I truly don't understand where that came from; I never said it.). I don't quite understand the need to defend those who don't move. All I said was that there was something "different" about expats and proposed some small non-scientific theories about what that difference may be...

They chose their life, we chose ours, and I hope we all have the best outcomes. It takes a lot of different people to make the world spin, simple.

So I get along a lot better and like Swiss people who have spent a prolonged amount of time outside of Switzerland. I also favor people who attempt to do something over those who don't. I think travel makes a difference in the broadness of a person's perspective. Although I wouldn't consider them automatically better people. But sure, the fact a person is from some place else does make them somewhat different in the place their in, simply by virtue of logic.

But let's not start grouping ourselves with this "we" business, alright? I am "we"-phobic.
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  #32  
Old 02.04.2015, 20:49
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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Mmhh I think some comments are off topic. The blog post is about cognitive biases, not about expats being better or worse than anyone else.

You with the opening post AND with the included blog touched various different but closely related topics. And you should not take such things personnally. Comments about your post / blog are exactly THIS, comments. And not criticism of you.
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  #33  
Old 02.04.2015, 21:06
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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Cognitive bias means "not normal", alright? Creeps and wierdos, but maybe in a Thom Yorke love song kind of way....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFkzRNyygfk

like '...I don't belong here'. Very lovely.

I do not believe that it is "not normal". For example, when I in a text about an area unknown to be about "mountains" I think about Glärnisch, Mythen, Glarner-Alpen, Säntis, plus Eiger, Mönch und Jungfrau, while the person possibly means the Uetliberg. People from Milano and Torino coming to Zürich come "from the South" but in the view of people in Roma, Milanese and Torinese are from UP NORTH.
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  #34  
Old 02.04.2015, 21:20
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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But let's not start grouping ourselves with this "we" business, alright? I am "we"-phobic.
What makes you so sure you are included in this particular poster's "we"?

I think you should feel free to indeed express the fact you like to hang with folks who travel or those who do things. Doesn't say anything about why you might like somebody else, or dislike, unless you specify it.

People are too eager to assume. I weigh less than 50 kilos. It doesn't say anything about other people's weight nor why people might weigh more... Might be the same with opinions and views, they happen to different people for different reasons. But if there's somebody who thinks there's a trend, why not let them express it before loading the interpretation of what they are saying, with our assumptions.
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  #35  
Old 02.04.2015, 21:31
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

I saw a "we" and "they" in there somewhere, which most likely leads to some dead end consciousness.

I didn't understand the trend, what was it? Please express it. To the weight comment, I prefer to surround myself with overweight people, because that should not matter, plus it makes me look skinnier when amongst them.
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  #36  
Old 02.04.2015, 21:33
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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"Some men go thru a forest and see no firewood".

Maybe that`s because they`re gazing ahead and upwards at the trees, not looking down at the ground where the dead firewood is lying in abundance?

Which brings me to think that one should perhaps keep one`s eyes on the ground, and not up in space, hoping for "something" - which is ethereal, in a way?

Which I relate to some basic advice dished out by old-fashioned parents at the dinner table .... "Keep your eyes on your own plate, and mind your own business".

I forgot what this thread is about - but it inspired me to wax lyrical anyway in my own stupid manner.
A feather in the hand is worth more than a bird in air - kind of thing? Well, sometimes people take risks, such as the risk of moving to another country, and it's all worth it. They gradually adjust, they feel happy with their life. Some don't.
In my understanding what OP was trying to ask/question is how other people have adjusted to their new "home" - what kind of "tricks" have worked for them.
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  #37  
Old 02.04.2015, 21:54
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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A feather in the hand is worth more than a bird in air - kind of thing?
We say "better sparrow in one's hand than a pigeon on one's roof", probably similar.. I do think big dreams and ideals, when followed, are a worthy experience. Moving across the world might be that. I love pioneering, gutsy spirit. Wherever it shows, if it means moving and up rooting, or changing career, or changing one's look..or any little step out of the ordinary. I do. wouldn't down play it because somebody else thinks staying home might be bad. Nobody says it is. Change can be as little as swapping silverware in hands to try eat mindfully..I respect some for adjustment, others for consistency, others for discipline, selflessness or self-effacement..There's lots of love and respect to spread around.

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In my understanding what OP was trying to ask/question is how other people have adjusted to their new "home" - what kind of "tricks" have worked for them.
Yup, I read it the same way. Not as if OP felt better than others.
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  #38  
Old 02.04.2015, 22:03
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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We say "better sparrow in one's hand than a pigeon on one's roof", probably similar.. I do think big dreams and ideals, when followed, are a worthy experience. Moving across the world might be that. I love pioneering, gutsy spirit. Wherever it shows, if it means moving and up rooting, or changing career, or changing one's look..or any little step out of the ordinary. I do. wouldn't down play it because somebody else thinks staying home might be bad. Nobody says it is. Change can be as little as swapping silverware in hands to try eat mindfully..I respect some for adjustment, others for consistency, others for discipline, selflessness or self-effacement..There's lots of love and respect to spread around.
.
Yes, very similar to the "better the sparrow in one's hand than a crow on one's fence"...that was the translation in English of an old proverb.
(probably they don't even have it and I've trusted the internet too much )

Anyway, totally agree with your post.

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  #39  
Old 02.04.2015, 22:30
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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Yes, very similar to the "better the sparrow in one's hand than a crow on one's fence"...that was the translation in English of an old proverb.
(probably they don't even have it and I've trusted the internet too much )

Anyway, totally agree with your post.
A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush?
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Old 02.04.2015, 22:35
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Re: Expat life, culture clash and cognitive biases

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A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush?
Yep, that was another translation that I found but I liked more the one with the feather.
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