As some of you may know, I’m about to leave for the US, where I’ll attend grad school. I haven’t yet gotten to describe all my adventures during my previous stays, but it’s safe to say, there are things I could have done better (as in any activity, I suppose).
Apart from the inertness and inhibitions I evinced as a teenager, I can recall a few instances where my deliberate actions, rudeness, defensiveness and the such turned people away from me. I’ll hopefully come to speak of these times later on in this blog, but right now I’d like to jot down a few ideas I think could help me “do better” at fitting into American/independent/away-from-home life this time.
- Think positively/ look on the bright side
No whining about your lifestyle, family and skills. If you’re not happy with it, change it, but since you went for it, it must have looked good, so present it positively.
- Accept other world views/sets of priorities as legitimate.
Even if you aren’t crazy about shopping, or athletics, or pet hamsters, for that matter, make an effort to explore why the person next to you likes them, what they mean to them. Keep your options open – that’s the way to discovering new likes.
- Plan ahead.
Find out what possibilities there are and set some goals in advance. Going with the flow is the surest way of ending up with something you don’t like.
- Get and stay involved.
This one is too obvious to require comments.
- Be sensitive/moderate in your utterances.
Neither you nor your interlocutor know everything, so allow for their perspective while sharing the knowledge you have and they may not.
There’d be little sense to these banal-sounding commandments of mine unless I went back and checked my progress once in a while. Any other suggestions?