Cultural Adjustment, Living Abroad, Student Life Abroad, Traveling, University Abroad

Studying Abroad: the Ups, Downs, and Finally Feeling “At home”! (Final part of a 4 Part Series)

September 20, 2016

Part 4: “The best education is making the most of every day”

An “international education” can be obtained a variety ways. Classroom lectures and discussions by professors and other students are invaluable. However, I also strongly believe that spending time outside the classroom and experiencing “everyday life” is just as crucial. What you experience in public gives you the life skills needed to become a more independent and mature adult. For most study abroad students, we are still in the “forever young, student life” phase. We are also getting closer to the phase where we have to face the “real world.” Without knowing things like how to ride a train, navigate one’s way through a city successfully, avoid drunkards and dangerous people, ask for directions and help, and most importantly, not looking helpless, you are bound to have endless problems.

Learning AND experiencing the struggles of being in packed train in Tokyo...(cry)

Learning AND experiencing the struggles of being in packed train in Tokyo…(cry)

Everyone handles their everyday lives and actions differently; not every action is exactly right or wrong. How one perceives and then handles life’s many challenges will affect the outcome. I know there is so much more I need and want to learn about in Japan. With that in mind, I have decided to take a leap of faith and “say yes!” to many opportunities presented to me. I’m taking a stab at them, knowing I might “mess up” – but I may also spectacularly succeed! And even after I am done with my study abroad experience, I can still look back on the memories I was able to make. It is much better to look back at your study abroad experience and say “what an amazing ride!” instead of be filled with the “coulda, woulda, shoulda” regrets.

Wearing traditional clothing in Okinawa with friends

Wearing traditional clothing in Okinawa with friends

 

Trying squid ink ice cream for the 1st time in Tottori, Japan!

Trying squid ink ice cream for the 1st time in Tottori, Japan!

 

Being brave and doing some solo dining at "yattai" (food stalls) in Fukuoka, Kyushu

Being brave and doing some solo dining at “yattai” (food stalls) in Fukuoka, Kyushu

 

End of a 4 part series

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