You are here

Why Study Abroad? Hmmmm....

June 2, 2018

Would it sound too harsh to start off blogging by saying that it may soon feel that study abroad may be a mistake? Because it sure feels that way. I have no idea what an internship at the University of Sydney's psychology department will look like or what I'll be doing there. I’d like to be honest: I struggle with anxiety, and studying abroad is going to be a challenge that I’m not entirely sure I will be able to handle. So why am I throwing myself halfway across the globe from my family, my friends, and everything I know? I'd love to learn that myself.

 

The push and pull of pleasing others has always been a weakness. In my blog, I hope to work through my symptoms publically to aid me in finding the tools I need to enjoy life and recover, while simultaneously spreading awareness of how anxiety can affect individuals who study abroad. So, here’s an official heads up: I am perfectly aware that I can be cheesy and that you might not care to read about me. That’s just fine. Writing this out helps me, and can maybe help some other anxious individuals who wish to travel abroad, and that’s what I care about.

 

It probably seems ridiculous that a significantly anxious person is putting themselves in this situation. The way I see it, I will be preventing more significant stress down the road regarding who I am and how I can find my place in the world. This is something I’ve been working on in college, but college can still be such a bubble when your only real problems are staying up late to study for tests and wondering which dining hall would be less disappointing to have lunch at. How can I expect to make adult decisions in the real world if those are the issues I'm struggling with? This is an anxiety that exists below all my other anxiety- so maybe addressing the main anxiety head on will help with the smaller everyday stuff.

 

I know there will be forehead smacking moments. I know I will find myself sticking out my wrong hand for a handshake, heading to my internship wearing my sweater inside out, or starting an email “dear colleges” instead of “dear colleagues." These mistakes will replay endlessly as I try to fall asleep the next evening. I know that they don't matter- that they will be forgotten by witnesses hours, maybe even minutes after they happen. But I'll remember. Because it reminds me that I am clumsy, spacey, and forgetful. I then try to remind myself that it does not matter, unsuccessfully attempting to banish the painful thoughts. Oh well.

 

What can you do but try to come to terms with it? Laugh in its face. Laugh at myself and my attempts to be perfect when perfect doesn't exist. Laugh and move on. That's my goal and what I will be working on in Australia, along with my people skills, self-care, and knowledge of developmental psychology. It's what will help me grow the most out of everything- what will help me find confidence in myself, move beyond the effects of my symptoms, and succeed in my field. Stay tuned to learn about the silly things I do and how I try to laugh and learn.

From Our Blogs

Oct 14 12:08pm

Those Who Make a Place

by Joshua

The places we travel can be beautiful and awe-inspiring.  Monuments carry profound meaning and breathtaking vistas remind us to pause to soak up the majesty of creation.  The hustle and bustle of the active city brings a rush to our veins. 

Learn more
Oct 14 6:20am

A Pop Punk Paris Playlist

by Sabrina

Hi everyone!

Learn more
Oct 13 9:28am

Finding Balance in a New Environment

by Allie

This past month has been a whirlwind of changes and newness.

Learn more
Oct 10 7:44am

My Weekend in Yokohama

by Sara

There's a whole world outside of Tokyo too!

Learn more
Oct 9 10:58am

IES Abroad Customized Program Introduces Latinx Students to Japanese Culture

by IES Abroad

Since the establishment of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) in 1986 and formal recognition by congress in 1992, Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs) have been leaders in making higher education more accessible to Latinx students.

Learn more
Oct 9 6:56am

At the Movies

by Makai

    I’ve found myself at a movie theater near the center of Amsterdam twice recently. I always get very into going to movies with my mom when I’m home for the summer.

Learn more