Thursday, January 1, 2015

Advice and reflections

So I have been teaching English in South Korea for seven months now, and I thought I would offer advice to those who are pursuing a career teaching English in another country, based on what I've experienced so far. 

1. Do your research: I unfortunately did not, and I have to deal with many issues in the workplace that I have not adapted to very well. 

2. Start a budget: When you are in another country, it's easy to spend a lot of money traveling, buying food and watching your money disappear. 

3. Learn the language: I'm still working on this one, due to time and money, but it's important to talk in the country's language if you live there for a while. 

4. Be yourself: Yes you will have to adapt to cultural norms in a new country, but that doesn't mean you have to change completely. You're amazing the way you are, and no one should tell you otherwise or try to change you.
5. Try new things: I'm braver now that I've stepped out into a new corner of the world. Being away from the familiar is an opportunity to be a bit more daring. I don't recommend doing something too crazy, but take a few steps out of your comfort zone for a bit. See what happens. 

6. Keep up with your hobbies: If you love writing, painting, drawing or anything crafty, keep it up while you're here. There will be weekends where you may want to chill. 

7. Enjoy it! Even if you are homesick, or having a rough time, do your best to enjoy being in another country. You're almost a long term tourist, and it's a lot more fun to go to other places on weekends. 

Living in another country is quite an experience. There are times that you'll want a piece of home, especially during difficult times, and then there are times that you feel lucky to be in another country, and able to travel to other places so far from home. 
You'll meet people from all around the world, and you'll learn so much about who you are and what you're able to do. 
Like everything in life, there are ups and downs, but a positive attitude can help you get through anything. 
It really is a life changing experience, and an important step in anyone's journey, regardless of their major or goals. 

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