7 typical responses that you’ll get when you tell people that you’re going abroad
(And reasons why you should completely ignore them!)
When you tell people that you’re going far far away for an extended period of time, their reactions, though sometimes well-meaning, can really take the wind out of your sails. “Don’t you like this country? So why travel abroad?” There are many different ways that people can react when you say that you’ve decided to spend some time overseas. Maybe they don’t want to be abandoned or they’re concerned for your safety. Whatever the reason, it can be a challenge to ignore those around you and defend your decision to go abroad. That’s why we’ve assembled this handy guide of reasons why you shouldn’t worry about their worries.
1. “Are you sure it’s safe?”
The risks and danger associated with being abroad are overplayed by the news media. News coverage is all about showing the rare (and oftentimes violent) events taking place around the world – not the common, boring, safe reality. Violence and danger sell. The risk of going abroad is perceived – not real. Barring a few regions, most of the world is just as safe as where you’re from. Safety abroad should be something on your mind – but shouldn’t keep you from having the adventure of a lifetime.
2. “But it’s so far? Why would you want to move so far away?”
People have different interests – yours can be international travel while someone else can really love sports. There are plenty of people in the world that are globally-minded and share a keen interest in the world. Living in just one country, even for a few weeks, can be a paradigm-shifting experience for someone who has never left their home country and is curious about the world.
3. “I wish I could do that but I have to worry about my career.”
Not only does experience abroad look good on a resume, but with an internship abroad you can earn relevant work experience while living in a foreign country. As the world continues to become increasingly globalized, more and more companies are looking to hire employees with multicultural competency and understand how management styles need to vary in order to adjust to different cultures.
4. “But I’m going to miss you too much.”
Real friends will support you in your endeavors, even if it means saying goodbye for a while. They want you to stick around so that they can hang out with you (they are your friends for a reason, after all). And that’s OK. But they’ll soon realize that this is the opportunity for you to become a happier, stronger and more independent person. Just don’t forget to stay in touch when you can!
5. “But you can’t speak Spanish?”
People travel all over the world without speaking a lick of the local language. Not knowing Spanish or Mandarin, or any other local languages will not hold you back. It will challenge you to learn a new language and figure out non-verbal ways to communicate.
6. “But you’re going to miss…”
Missing someone or something is not a reason to say no to new experiences and take advantage of the freedom of your youth. You’ll always be able to come back home. You won’t always be able to travel the world.
7. “What if you never come back?”
So what if you don’t? (Just kidding!)
Photo 2. based on Travel, by Moyan Brenn, CC-by-2.0