Studying and Living Abroad: The Good and Bad

Not rainbows and sunshine - more like rainbows and stormy days.

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Traveling abroad

It’s been 3 years since I made the fateful decision to leave Singapore for Melbourne. In 8 hours I was transported from the country of skyscrapers, astoundingly spotless streets and sweltering heat to the city of sport, brilliant brunches and temperamental weather. I’ve experienced the highest of highs and lowest of lows these 3 years and, while I could go on endlessly about this topic, have come up with the 2 best reasons why all young adults should live abroad at some point in their life:

 

You’ll be pushed to your limits (that you never knew you had)

I’ve always considered myself a strong person but between university, working and #life, I’ve wanted to give up trying to hold it all together countless times. But it’s in these moments where you’re pushed so far out your comfort zone, when you should hold on a bit longer. Trust me, the hardships will pass and every obstacle I didn’t think I’d overcome, but did, instilled in me so much confidence and honed my mental fortitude. You’ll grow up fast – when my friends back home were deciding what to have for dinner, I was learning how to do my taxes, create a good tenant application, buying groceries, attending university, working and exercising all in the same day. I learnt that where you come from will always be home, but you can create a new home elsewhere. It just takes a bit of time, hard work and finding a good support system.

 

You’ll get to witness a whole new world

Singapore is very different from Melbourne and I’ve been here for a while now but I still find something new to love about this place every day. From the way the city looks at night standing at the edge of the Yarra River to randomly meeting interesting people in cafes, there’s beauty to be found in every nook and cranny, and when you don’t expect to find any. I’m constantly amazed at the magnificent Victorian architecture of the city and always inspired by the people in my life. Having lived in Singapore for almost 2 decades with little variation in routines, coming to Melbourne opened my eyes to a new world, challenged my perspectives and made me appreciate the little things more. I’m a better person today than I was before I took a leap of faith to embark on this new journey.

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Jolene Phay is a literature graduate based in Melbourne. She incorporates her passion for writing and being active into creating the kind of fitness and wellness articles she wishes she had read at the start of her fitness journey. When not at the gym, she binge watches Game of Thrones and takes power naps…between meals.