Monday, 22 June 2015

Japan : culture shock

Having  writers block really does suck, for the past week I've been on here thinking of something of quality to write and I thought  there's no point in writing for the sake of it  till I  felt the impulse to write about this topic.
So you may or may not know but I am a massive fan of japan or Asia in general and before you judge no im not some crazy anime obsessed person, I like anime yes but obsessed no. I think what I like about it is that its completely different to the culture I live in ( the UK) not only that but to me especially as s very creative person their seems to be lots of opportunity's as there  are large companies and  people seem to be more outgoing and  ambitious  ! Also for a long time I have loved Japanese outrageous fashion that you might see on Tokyo fashion week and generally Japanese street fashion... also I love Asian food but I've been doing some deep research into life in japan after having a think about my career.

Cultural shock
 From  what I've heard from several you tube channels and good old google, there are a lot of cultural differences I had not even thought of. I thought it might be interesting for people to consider both sides of japan before moving there so keep  reading if you just have an interest in different cultures.
quick disclaimer, I have never been to Japan I'm just sharing what I've read, in no way am I trying to insult Japan either.
Over working staff
 Japan appears as a place that is doing very well but it is worth the lives of staff that have no option but to fully commit to  they're job due to social pressure and  financial commitments. This commitments starts as soon as Japanese students leave university. This can cause people to be depressed in their job and feel trapped. There have been situations where people feel so trapped and over worked that suicide is the only way out and when that's not the case people have  died from heart attack. ( these are worst case scenario's  just to note )

    Showing a lack of emotion
 Many  people may perceive  Japan to be the Disney world of all countries but its not all fun fun fun, people there experience trauma and heart break just like everyone else but the way these feelings are dealt with is completely different. People are often do not display negative emotion publically and it can even be seen as rude or inappropriate to do so. Also expressing your opinion very passionately is not often seen, as a very passionate and chatty person I think I would really struggle with this. On a more serious note, this can cause people to become more depressed and feel unable to voice how they feel. mental health is rarely discussed. Just to be clear im not dissing japan but I'm just putting out the information I've found on the internet.

Things to be aware of  while in Japan
I think its extremely important to understand major parts of a culture before taking a leap and moving there, so I've literally spend hours on end researching . Here  are some of the ones I found .

1.  Taking of your shoes when entering someone's house.

2.  People don't tend to speak very loudly in public  such as trains it's   considered rude( especially on the phone).

3. It's extremely busy even in comparison to somewhere like London.

4. You should wear a mouth mask when your ill it can be considered rude not too. Also worn as a fashion statement.

5. Not a lot of people will be able to speak English, unlike most countries you probably won't get away with not bothering to learn the language.

6. As a gaijin ( foreigner) you will probably get stared at a lot depending where you are  I guess if your in Tokyo its not as rare to see a foreigner.

7. Strangely enough I heard  that its more other foreigners that are racist to each  other and unfriendly than Japanese people themselves

lastly  after all the negative things I've researched about Japan I am still determined to go there and for myself , I hope at least one person learnt something new and still feels as fascinated about Japan as I do !

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