Teaching English in Japan

night-market
So, I’m thinking about teaching english in another country. I’ve always liked the idea, but never took action on getting a teaching certificate or applying without one. Until yesterday. I don’t even know exactly where I’d like to teach, but I’ve applied to various places in hopes that they will see my potential and give me a chance! I love new cultures. I love languages. New foods. Interesting people. New sights.

Ahh, I feel like a kid again just imagining going out again on travel abroad. I use my imagination and creativity to come up with the wildest stories of what could happen or what might come out of it. I grow so much from travel, so I look forward to that aspect as well, learning what true compassion means, and applying that to my daily life.

I just now (literally like 5 minutes ago!) finished an application to teach children english abroad in Japan. They required a 500 word essay that I wrote in like 20-30 minutes. I thought I’d share it on here for all to see, if you’re at all interested in understanding why I would like to go abroad to live and work and experience daily life.

Now, without further ado:

Why I Want to Teach English to Children in Japan

Teaching abroad is an exciting adventure. It’s a time where the instructors can get out of their home country, and experience many new things. There are several reasons for people to desire working abroad, but I’ve chosen 3 main reasons for myself. I hope to be chosen to teach English abroad in Japan in order to give back to the community and help children, to submerse myself in Japanese culture and share my own culture with others, and lastly to explore the natural beauty Japan has to offer.

First, I want to give back to the community and help children. My purpose in life is to serve a higher purpose than myself. I believe I am supposed to help people in a big way, and I can do that through teaching abroad. I can improve the english skills of Japanese children with the skills I grew up with and have refined over time. I enjoy giving. I believe it is vital to life, to give more than we take. I feel it just makes the world go round a bit nicer.

Next, I’d love to submerse myself in Japanese culture and share my culture with others. And by that I mean the food culture, the music culture, and the language culture. I follow a strict vegetarian diet, so much of the japanese food culture interests me very much! I hope to try many ethnic foods including vegetarian gyoza, sushi, and soba noodle dishes. When I visited Thailand a couple of years ago, I enjoyed going to the open food markets and buying local food from the street vendors. I hope to see what the markets are like in Japan, as well as support the local vendors and the Japanese economy with my purchases. I love the music of Japan. The sound of the Koto is so relaxing. I imagine it would be a wonderful sound to meditate to. (I should try that soon!) Foreign languages interest me a lot, especially asian languages. I have studied Mandarin Chinese, and Thai both, and would greatly enjoy learning Japanese as well!

Lastly, I can’t wait to explore the beauty Japan has to offer, including it’s forests, mountains, and the waters. I am a person who has a deep love and respect for nature, connecting with it in a very deep and beautiful way. Forests are my sanctuary and have so much to offer to us humans. I would love to explore the forests of Japan, and view the mountains stretching high into the sky. I’d also like to visit the sea and ocean, as they have many meditative qualities to them. The sound of the waves crashing upon the shore feeds my soul. Since Japan is an island, and fully surrounded by water, I believe it would be such a sight to see! What an experience it would be to view all the beaches and coastal lines as far as the eye could see!

Concluding, I understand that Japan is a very unique and sacred place on this earth, and I would enjoy more than anything to be able to explore it, while at the same time giving pieces of myself back to the community, to the children, and to the school. I am excited for what this life has to offer me, and I believe that being able to experience Japan in a real way by teaching english to children would be an unforgettable experience of a lifetime. Thank you.

Thanks for reading! I love you. Please feel free to share any thoughts that come up for you after reading, I’d love to hear!

With a ton of gratitude and love,
❤ Brittany

Advertisements

Personal Responsibility

CAM00506 copy

One of the most freeing ideas I’ve come to learn (and am still learning) is about taking personal responsibility. Here are some things I’ve learned:

1. Everything is my fault.

Wherever I am in life, right now, in this moment, is MY FAULT. It’s my own fault that I do not have as much money as I want. It is my fault that I fight with my husband. It is my fault that I am not as good on the piano or guitar as I wish I were. It is my fault that I have more fat on my body than I want. It is my fault that I read slow. I can always find truth in these statements, because they are true.

I could learn more about business and make more abundance for myself. I could choose to back down or be more understanding when my husband and I have an argument about something. I could practice more intensely and get a mentor to become an awesome musician. I could read more, take speed reading classes, and work harder towards reading at a quicker pace. I could eat less food and exercise more (in a healthy way) in order to get fitter. It is nobody else’s fault- not my parents’, not my husband’s, not my genetics, not God’s, nor the universe’s fault. Everything is always my fault. Period.

2. People treat me the way I teach them to treat me.

I’ve played the victim a lot in my life. I’m naturally a people pleaser and a giver, so in the past I’ve gotten myself into situations where I’ve felt very taken advantage of and unappreciated. I’ve learned that I have to set boundaries for myself (which I still fail at most of the time.) If I were to have set more specific personal boundaries for myself in the past, I could’ve saved myself a lot of hard feelings.

For instance- Before I got married, I was in an unhealthy relationship. My boyfriend-we’ll call him Frank- and I had a very dependent relationship and unrealistic expectations for each other. Frank was lazy. He played video games all day, had no job, and was messy. Like, really messy. He ate a lot of junk food in wrappers and boxes and drank sodas in cans, which by the way would be left behind for someone else to pick up later. He did not clean up after himself. Ever. He did not do his laundry. It would sprawl itself all over the floor- I literally could not walk from one end of the room to the other because of the massive piles of filth. It was in a word, unlivable.

Now, here I am, a complete NEAT FREAK. Imagine how I feel when I walk into this horrific scene as I’ll call it, because that’s really what it was for me. I couldn’t help but NOT clean. Take out the trash. Do laundry. Dishes. And this, by the way, was all in order to spend some relaxing time in a clean space with someone I cared about. Frank got used to me playing house-maid. He practically came to expect that from me. And when I wasn’t doing it, his mom was. I personally taught and trained Frank to get really accustomed to never doing anything himself. I taught him how to treat me, and got what I asked for. Learn from my experiences and teach people to treat you the way you want to be treated and deserve to be treated.

3. I create my own reality.

I have the choice to create my own reality, exactly how I want it. Every day we’re constantly being forced-whether we like it or not- to make decisions. I can either let life happen to me, or I can take control of my life. This isn’t to say that we have COMPLETE control over EVERYTHING, I’m basically stating that what we DO have control over, we get a say in it. This was scary for me to realize. Once I found out that my personal choices I make on a daily basis are LITERALLY creating my destiny? You best believe I took note.

I experimented with that, and still am. Sometimes I’ll purposefully make choices and look for opportunities in a certain direction I want to take my life. Sometimes, I get lazy and don’t feel like making decisions so I let life happen as it would without my consent or opinion. I’ve learned that when I choose to have a say in my life, I generally will get what I want. I can literally create the life I want to live because I can choose. It takes a whole lot of effort, persistence, a VERY CLEAR VISION of what it is I really want, but I’ll take that over the alternative any day. I’ll admit, it’s not easy. But it’s definitely worth it.

So my question to you is this: What will you choose to take responsibility for right now, in this moment? Perhaps it’s your health. Your failing marriage. Your debt. Your dirty house. Your bad moods. Your lack of skills. Your lack of success. Or perhaps something else? In the end, each and every one of us has the power of choice. What will you choose?

I love you from the moon and back a thousand times. I’m so grateful for you.

Take care, my friend and remember: When you take full responsibility for your own lot in life, there you will find true freedom. 

Peace & love, and a whole ‘lotta gratitude,
❤ Brittany

Questions and comments are always welcome below!

Picnic for one

CAM00583

I decided to take myself out on a date. It was so romantic. I took myself to Oak Grove Park. (Or at least that’s what me and my husband re-named it!)

I figured a picnic would be fancy enough, but not too fancy. I didn’t bring a sheet. Or a basket. Or a bottle of wine. (Like I said, not too fancy!) 🙂 Simple is best, and that’s just the way I like it.

Beneath a tall oak tree, I watched children play. And laugh. I laughed with them. Then I just sat there quietly and ate.

Salad. Water. Just sat. With myself. Pondering about life. Pondering about all sorts of things.

Screen Shot 2015-05-07 at 1.59.48 AM

Doing anything alone always frightened me for some reason. I don’t know what I feared exactly, but all I knew was that I didn’t like even the thought of doing anything alone.

Ever.

I always lived by the motto: “The more the merrier!” And that’s the way I lived my life for years. Any time I’d go somewhere, I’d try to invite as many people as possible.

It doesn’t sound all that appealing anymore. I think now: “The more, the messier!” And that’s generally true in most cases. More drama. More gossip. More waste. More clean-up. Over the years, after trying things out for myself, & being alone more often, you could say I’ve learned a few things. And I’d be glad to share them with you today:

Lesson #1: I’ve come to learn more about myself and who I really am.

This is something that happens on the inside (like deep down.) I’ve learned more of the things I really enjoy. Things I really don’t enjoy. Things that surprise me. For instance, I learned that when I sit beside a big oak tree, in the afternoon sun, during the springtime, with my shoes off, close my eyes, I feel connected with the earth. I feel calm and centered. I feel at peace. I never could’ve learned about myself if I hadn’t been truly present. In the moment. Just me and nature.

Lesson #2: I enjoy myself more.

I always thought I’d feel lonely, scared, and bored with my thoughts. But the opposite is more true. I became more joyful, and giddy, and playful. I felt like a kid again. I could use my imagination. I found my imaginary friend again. Me.

When I’m by myself, I don’t have to look to others for approval. Approval of where ‘we’ go. What ‘we’ will do. Whatever I want, goes. And that’s just the way I like it.

Lesson #3: I learned how to become my best friend.

I started noticing nice things about myself. I started noticing my thoughts, and how they reach out to others. I started to respect myself and think highly of myself. Not in the sense of bragging, but more like I was realizing who I really was inside and taking note. Kind of like I would another person. I started more positive self-talk, and talking to myself like I would a friend. I’d say things like: “Nice outfit you got there,” or “You’re so funny,” or “I love the way you laugh.” Life is more fun when you’re not being your worst enemy. I’m pretty sure I literally hugged myself at some point. And, (I’ll admit) it was actually quite nice!

I mean, after all, we will be with us the rest of our lives, so we better get a start on liking ourselves a bit!

CAM00584
So these are a few things I learned from my own experience.

My challenge for you is this: Go do something solo today. Go to lunch, on a walk, or treat yourself to a fancy lattè. Breathe it all in. Truly experience it.

Tell yourself all the things you would a ‘real’ best friend. Tell yourself how adorable or handsome you look. Tell yourself that you’re so glad you get to spend time with them. Tell yourself that there’s no one who could ever replace you. Give yourself a hug (literally, hug yourself!) and tell yourself that you’re so glad they could make it out today. Thank yourself for being perfectly on time.

And most importantly, tell yourself “I love you.” And mean it.

I love you. I truly do. Thanks for reading. Thanks for stopping by. I hope you’ve gained something 🙂

Peace & Love my friends,
❤ Brittany