Why you should embrace culture shock

The desire to confront the greatness of nature brought Romantic wanderers to travel. Also it's said that opening your eyes to new horizons will open your mind as well. This is all so poetic and awesome, but what about culture shock?

culture shock

Culture shock seems to be one of those things that only cool people experience, like jet lag, or that horrible feeling when your Louboutin heel gets stuck in a drain cover. Seriously though, when you are abroad, better if alone, you get to live a whole new life. Not only because no one knows you, but because the 'you' you used to know, with habits and priorities, it's basically gone. 

The first stage of culture shock consists of excitement and depression. Sometimes at the same time. The second stage of culture shock is a deeper understanding of those 'habits and priorities'. You discover your real values when they're being tested, and culture shock will either get rid of, or reinforce them. This is why they say that you have to travel to find yourself. 

When you realise that everything around you is new and no one knows you, you really can start writing your own adventure. Along with the newly discovered values, you can erase your previous habits and be inspired to become the person you always wanted to be, not the one people around you shaped for you. I've always found such concept utterly inspiring.

What if your new self turns out to be completely different from who you were when you left home? Well, I guess that's called growing up, or evolving. To put it bluntly: life. Of course you could have stayed in your Hobbit hole eating and smoking the best Old Toby of the Shire. If that's the case you would have never met the Elves on your adventure, and you would have lived a peaceful life. Here you are, instead, lost in some kind of realm and alone, if the words that come to your mind are: excitement, and depression, then you are ready to embrace culture shock.

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