How Making Friends Isn’t So Easy After School

So now that life has calmed down a little and I don’t have to run around like a headless chicken trying to get things done anymore, I have realized how lonely living in a foreign country can get.

I like to think of myself as an outgoing introvert; I enjoy spending time with people I love and genuinely get excited about meeting new people- although I might be awkward at times, but I also enjoy my alone-time (maybe even more). But the funny thing is that I even though I could spend my whole weekend watching Netflix by myself, I do get lonely.

As an exchange student, which I was four years ago, you are bound to meet new people and make friends as you’re all in the same boat + you’re probably around the same age. For me it was the best year of my life (so far) and that was hugely because of the amazing people I met during that time and all the things we went through together ❤ I still keep contact with my exchange friends and thankfully some of them I can see even more now that I am in Japan!

But coming to Japan four years later, hoping to stay for a while in this country I love, it’s actually quite lonely at times. Although Osaka and Sendai are like my second homes, Tokyo is still a bit strange for me -most likely because I don’t have a lot of friends here.

And it really isn’t easy to make friends working in a foreign country, especially Japan. I feel like here it’s hard to have meaningful encounters, unless you already know someone or there’s some kind existing connection between you (like school or work).

Obviously I have my Japanese friends from my exchange and through my boyfriend, but only one of them lives in the Tokyo area. We do meet every two weeks and have a lot of plans for the coming months, but weekends like this when I don’t really have any plans are quite new to me. In Finland I could’ve just called up a friend to go for drinks or barge into their place (you know who you are <3), but in Tokyo I don’t really have that yet.

And this isn’t me complaining about my situation; I have amazing friends both in Japan as well as all around the world who I can call up whenever I get lonely + even some great encounters in these four weeks here in Tokyo, which makes me feel so happy and so so excited for things to come. I just feel like it isn’t as easy to meet new people, and most of all, open yourself to people once you’re out of school and in the working life, not to mention in a foreign country. I’m sure I’m not the only person going through this.

I’m sure my situation will change in a month or two since now I feel more motivated to actually leave my house and meet people, but today I will enjoy my Netflix alone-time.

Just wanted to share my thoughts on this on this gray day in Tokyo 🙂

Anni

13.10.2018

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