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Saturday, October 1, 2016

Why I Love Japan

One of the most frequently asked questions I get is why I love Japan. I get this question from relatives, friends, and strangers. I've thought about this recently and it has occurred to me that I've been giving typical answers like "I love the culture" or "I like anime." Now, all of that is true. I freaking love the culture to death, and anime is what got me started on Japan. But the problem with these answers is that it's not my real, true answer. I've been giving easy answers out. I thought I did this because I get this question a lot and was just sick of answering it all the time but its actually more personal.

Me in an anime store. Anime is what got me interested in Japan first.
Here's the answer to this question, if you're willing to listen.

Short Answer:
I love the lifestyle in Japan and the morals of most Japanese people.

Long Answer:
Is it sad to say that I've never fully been myself for most of my life? I've been taught the whole "be yourself" motto but as you get older that motto gets stepped on. It's hard to be yourself when people expect you to be a certain way. Or even better, when you show them who you are but they kinda give you a look of confusion. You start forming different personalities in order to make everyone happy and to like you. I remember in high school I played stupid. I joked around and pretended I was stupid in order for people to like me better. In reality, I was smart and had a lot to offer. I didn't really show that side of me until college. But even so I still have to act a certain part. I want to be a kind person, the real me, but I can't because I always have to defend myself by debating with people or being "100%" with them. Why do people have to be jerks? Why are my surroundings like this? Why do I have to have an opinion about everything?

Every person is an individual, but the Japanese lifestyle fits my personality perfectly, or at least the person I really want to be. The Japanese have a motto: before you speak or take action, think about if what you're about to do or say will effect others. I love this motto. I wish I could live by this motto but it's hard where I'm from because everybody has to have an opinion and pressures others into fighting with them. That's all anybody ever does these days, is fight. I don't want to fight! I just want to live my life peacefully and worry only about myself and the people I truly care about. In Japan people have their opinions but it's left at that. There's no pressure in fighting with people or trying to "convert" other's opinions to your own.

Japan in general is peaceful for the most part. Most people are polite, helpful and caring. Their work mentality is amazing! I hate it when I'm at work and I'm hearing employees complaining about their work. If you hate it so much quit, and if not then shut up and do your very best! I try to give my all in everything I do. I try to do things that are not even expected of me. I like this way of living, and it reflects the Japanese lifestyle.
On a path through Ginkakuji Temple in Kyoto, Japan. Such a peaceful place.
So, why do I love Japan? Japan makes me a better person, or at least it makes me want to be a better person. I don't have to pretend to be someone that I'm not. I can just have fun and be myself.

Sorry for the sappiness of this post, but this is my real answer to that famous question. Would you believe that it took me a month to write this blog post? I was very hesitant to post this because it's super personal and I've only told my husband about this way I feel. I decided to open up in hopes that maybe some people out there feel the same way I do and hopefully make them feel like they're not alone like I felt.

On a brighter note, follow me on social media and here on my blog for more Japan content! Thank for reading!

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