“You will depend less on other people and start believing in yourself”

Studying abroad does not only provide you with the possibility to attend a university in a foreign country and to explore the world, but it can turn into one of the best experiences of your life and change you personally. Here are 5 ways studying abroad changes you:

1. Independence

A girl in a yellow dress is standing on the top of a hill of an island in Indonesia.
Your semester abroad will shape you for life. You will become more independent! Photo by Kilian Pham / CC BY

Even if you already graduated one or two years ago, you might decide to keep living at home. And even if you share a dorm at college, the majority of students still have the support of their parents. If something happens, your friends or parents are there to help, even if they are not nearby. But when you decide to go on an adventure far away from home, you will be on your own. This is your chance to evolve! At first it will be challenging, especially if you don´t know anyone. But this experience shapes you: You will have to be creative and figure things out on your own. After a while, you will depend less on other people and start believing in yourself – you will realize what you are capable of.

2. Open-minded

Two men are standing in a tunnel made of orange poles while they are making a picture in China.
You will meet so many new like-minded and inspiring people during your time abroad. Photo by Brevité / CC BY

At home, you always see the same people. If you live in a small village and don´t get around that much, you may not have much cultural diversity at home. Living abroad will teach you to be open-minded and broaden your perspective: You will meet so many new people from all kinds of different countries, cultures and religions. At first it can be difficult when people with completely different mindsets live together. But if you open up and respect each other, you can truly bond and have a great time despite all differences!

3. Confidence and getting out of your comfort zone

A view from an airplane window whereby you can see the wing of the airplane during sunrise.
Dare to get out of your comfort zone, only then will magic happen! Photo by Nils Nedel / CC BY

Studying abroad can be challenging and will most likely take you out of your comfort zone. But this is the chance to do the things you never dared to do at home – even if it’s just little things like wearing clothes that you would have been judged for wearing at home. If you’re anxious around people – go out and meet locals or fellow international students. Everything you do to expand your comfort zone will put you in discomfort first. But you will not regret it! After a while you will dare to defeat bigger fears. Travel to a foreign place for a weekend and go bungee jumping if you are afraid of heights. There are endless possibilities to increase your confidence – but you have to make an effort. Nothing and nobody can stop you to do your own thing. You will make unforgettable experiences.

4. Addiction to traveling

Two men are walking on the stairs of a white temple in Thailand.
Being away from home is exciting and an adventure. Once you had one, you want more! Photo by Jordan Le / CC BY

Once you go and truly make the best out of your experience abroad, you will not want to go back home. And once you are home you will miss it. The reason for this is quite simple: After a long time away from friends and family you will have changed, but if you come home, people expect you to be the same as when you left. You will miss the times when you were traveling through foreign countries, seeing breath-taking places, meeting new people and maybe even speaking foreign languages, as hard as it was. Being away from home is exciting and always an adventure. You never know what will happen – life at home is more predictable and generic compared to being abroad.

You might also be interested in: 6 Tips How to Make the Most Out of Your Study Abroad 

5. Appreciate the little things

A person is laying on a rock in front of palm trees and a sea in Thailand.
Being away from home is exciting. Sometimes you forget to realise it in the moment. Photo by Evan Krause / CC BY

This aspect is more than just about materialism. Yes, you will care less about your possessions as you learn to live out of a suitcase or backpack. But there are also other things you will learn to appreciate, more than just your possessions.

Being at home can feel annoying at times, because it’s always the same. You don´t see what´s so special about your way of living and your home country. But as soon as you live abroad with complete strangers and new cultures, you will see how easy things were at home. Especially in the beginning of your journey, when even the smallest things like unknown food can bother you. Furthermore, studying abroad will probably not be cheap. You will learn to live on a tight budget and still make the best out of it. You will see that breath-taking adventures don’t have to be expensive!

Should you ever be able to study abroad – do it! It will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience you don’t want to miss! Have fun, challenge yourself, get out of your comfort zone and explore the possibilities! And most importantly: enjoy it!

Find out more about studying abroad

Asia Exchange is a Finnish company providing study abroad opportunities in Asia Pacific for students from all around the world. Want to get travel tips and new blog posts straight to your inbox? Subscribe to our monthly newsletter! If you have any questions about studying abroad, feel free to contact us! We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

This text was written by Maureen R. for StuDocu!

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