Pre-departure Detachment

Rahul Gupta
January 18, 2019

As I prepare for my study abroad trip, I discover more about the importance of detaching myself from materialistic possessions. We have so much stuff and stuff and stuff and stuff…you would be surprised about how much stuff a normal household or person possesses but does not need. Attachment to materials is like a loop; it consumes us and takes us away from real emotions, awkward moments, unimagined connections, unfelt feelings, and from experiencing life.

This is why I want to make my study abroad trip more about being with people, about staying more outdoors than indoors, about staying away from things, and about finding space—space for myself and for the people around me. I want to feel and give before I want to possess and own. With this thought, I start my journey by packing only the things I need.

The first step that I took in order to be an efficient packer and to avoid being sentimental about my possessions was to understand the “just in case” phrase. This phrase is your biggest enemy when it comes to packing. I found myself putting so much stuff because I accepted the “just in case” mentality. A good way to combat this mentality is to adopt the ‘survival mentality’, which essentially means to first pack things you would absolutely need. If we take a closer look at our lifestyles through the survival mentality, we can eliminate a lot of stuff that we don’t really need and make our lives a whole lot easier. Living in a time where everything is so readily available and deliverable, consumerism is becoming a bigger concern; after all, there are only so many resources and so much space available on our planet. We can start working towards a stuff-free life by donating, selling, reusing, and most importantly, buying less. A wise man once said, "Invest in experiences, not in materials," so this is the motto I will try to live by during my study abroad trip and in my life henceforth.

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Rahul Gupta

<p>I have studied in boarding schools for 16 years including college, basically all my life! Being used to living away from home and family has taught me the value of my friendships and the relationships that I share<br>with the people around me.</p><p>Fun Fact: I live on the literal border of India and Nepal and I can speak 5 languages<br>Hobbies: I love playing soccer, making travel videos, hiking, and doing all of them at once</p>

2019 Spring
Home University:
University of Rochester
Rochester, NY
Engineering - General
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