Learning About Myself While Studying Abroad: Being Alone
Before I left for my study abroad people told me when you study abroad you learn a lot about yourself. When I landed in Japan I was feeling the effects of a bad breakup, I was homesick and I was nervous. I was afraid I wouldn't make friends or have people to go do stuff with. First off I was wrong, I made some of my best friends while I was there and met the love of my life so just hear me out.
On my second morning there, I woke up and I decided I shouldn't be afraid about going and doing things by myself. I decided that in order for me to meet the person I wanted to be with in terms of a relationship I needed to be comfortable being a lone, now I was thinking this for when I got back to America not in Japan but the universe had other plans. Even for making friends I thought I have to be ok being alone because there will be things I want to do and others won't and I didn't want to miss out on being able to do them.
I started to do things by myself and inviting others to come with me which really helped build some of my friendships. I just also learned to enjoy being by myself. I was never afraid of doing things by myself but I thought I'd get lonely. To my surprise I didn't feel lonely. I was able to explore more and at my pace without worrying about other people.
I started going to parks by myself, coffee shops or restaurants and museums. I went to different tourist things by myself. I made a list before I came to Japan of cafes, restaurants, stores and tourist things I wanted to do and when no one was around to do something I would just go by myself. Shopping became something I wasn't afraid to do on my own, eating and other things like that.
The hardest thing for me to learn how to do alone is eating. In the US eating alone isn't common and it isn't something I was confident in doing, I would always take my food to go. Well Japan doesn't do take out, and that forced me to eat in restaurants by myself. And now I've brought those skills back with me to the US.