5 Things I Learnt While Studying Abroad

Studying abroad has been a very interesting experience and these are some of the things that I’ve picked up over the way:

Change is good- as someone with anxiety I am not a fan of change in any way whatsoever. Weirdly enough though I love the idea of change but moving to Canada taught me that change in real life is good too and sometimes taking a chance can be the best decision of your life.
You need to find your own happiness- moving to a new place isn’t going to make you happy or satisfied. You need to find your own happiness.
Everything is a challenge- living abroad is not always what movies make it out to be. Yes, it’s an amazing experience if you make the most of it but it can also be extremely difficult. You’re in a new place where you probably don’t know anyone or anything and adjusting takes a while. Doing your research helps though!
Make the best of everything- bad things will happen but instead of fixating on these make the best of the experience and make as many memories as you can!
Every place is unique- every place is unique an beautiful and remember to appreciate this whenever you can! Make sure to make memories while you’re there and make the most of it!

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70 thoughts on “5 Things I Learnt While Studying Abroad

  1. I love this! Studying abroad was the best experience of my life! I made forever friends and learned so much about myself. I’m really grateful I had that experience and I encourage others to do it too!

  2. Your five points could apply to anything, even a virus. I differ with the point on change — as you grow older, you’ll find some changes aren’t positive, but all change is by-and-large inevitable. You don’t have to change location for your location to change around you. However, having diverse experiences is largely wonderful.

  3. The year I graduated with my Master’s, they added a trip abroad for a new program to see how other countries ran their businesses. I was too far into my program to do the trip as it would have required me changing majors.

      1. It was. Be nice if they opened it to alumni as an option. Back then, the trip was $3,000 on top of the $1,500 for the class. Not sure how much it would be today, but I expect it may be cheaper initially once international travel becomes easier. I would need to renew my passport as it lapsed years ago.

        1. Yeah that would be great and I’m sure other alumni would be interested too! Perhaps you should make the suggestion once travelling becomes a bit safer.

          1. I will if I remember it. No telling how long before travelling becomes safe again. The current theory estimates mid to late April may flatten the curve here, but many people are not taking it seriously yet. Saw a group of 10+ people playing basketball a couple of days ago as I was going to get food.

            1. Yeah it’s sad that people aren’t taking this more seriously. They not only put their own lives at risk but the lives of others too.

              1. Agreed. My father’s attitude was prepare for the worst, hope for the best. If he were still around, he would do what I did and shelter in place before the local government stepped in. I started about a week before the County instituted shelter in place.

                  1. Stay safe yourself. I usually go to a convenience that’s close for many things. I do have a Dollar General twice as far where I go for some things. The closest Wal-Mart is too far away for me to ride my bicycle for what I can carry in my baskets, plus it tends to be a lot busier. Sounds like they were going to institute how many customers were allowed in Wal-Mart soon if they haven’t already.

                    1. Yeah I have a convenience store close by to which I usually get most of my items from. It seems likely that Walmart and other grocery stores as well will implement some kind of limit like that soon.

                    2. In theory, they have. Went with a friend yesterday to Walmart and it was letting a lot of people in the store. They had limited access as they blocked the other door, and instituted things designed to create limited access, but weren’t using them in an effective manner.

                    3. Oh okay well maybe they’ve started limiting customers and are going to be stricter about it soon.

                    4. One can hope. The recommendation I saw recently is 1 customer for every 1,000 square feet of floor space for customers. As small as aisle width is, you can’t do 6′ spacing in most decent sized retail chains.
                      At least, many chains are wiping down common areas like card readers.

                    5. A regional convenience store chain is good about doing this. The plus for me is it’s the nearest store to me.
                      Hope you are still doing well.

                    6. That’s good at least if it’s close by you can get to it. The further ones are a little more difficult.
                      I’m still doing okay and hope you’re well too.

  4. Insightful post.
    Travelling is the best teacher. You learn from others, and you learn so much about your own insecurities and in some cases how ridiculous they are. Highly recommend to anyone reading this, that’s in there late teens or 20s, take time out and go travelling.
    The amount you will learn will surprise you. Living in the same place limits your thinking- the world lifts off them limitations, and you grow into the fullness of who you are.

    1. I definitely agree! I feel like I’m so much more open to new experiences and feel so much better about myself now! Travelling is definitely a great teacher!

      1. I didn’t do much travelling myself but did travel to South America in 2014 for year to work with street children. Met a lot of Swiss people who’s countries education system is set up for them to travel.
        Most had been on every continent. All of them where super chilled, nothing seemed to phase them.
        Was a completely different person since i came back and that was only one trip, one different culture. Being Irish travelling is not really in our blood but I felt first hand the difference travelling can make, and highly recommend to all to travel when they have the chance.
        It’s so easy to get locked into one view of the world, what the media tells you, you have to experience it first hand. 🙂

  5. Interesting. i’ve always thought about moving abroad is going to make me happy but it’s fascinating to see someone who thinks otherwise, with regards to what you said about finding your own happiness

    1. Yeah it does sometimes help to change where you’re located but what I’ve found is that it can also become a kind of escapist mechanism which isn’t healthy.

  6. Studying abroad truly is a life changing experience and its so true that every place is unique in its culture and its people, but that there may be challenges acclaiming to a new place.

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