A Journey of Self-Discovery in Japan

Intrigued by the allure of Japan, Jessica Gerrity made the decision to explore and embrace life there. This initial exploration gradually evolved into a permanent stay, leading to a journey of self-discovery for her.

Embracing Japan

Nick: I was reflecting on your life in Japan. And I probably ask this sort of question, maybe at the end of at the end of the podcast, but do you think you found yourself in Japan? Or do you think you created or self-actualized, like a new Jessica, one that would never have come into being if you had only lived in New Zealand?

Jessica: I don't know. I've never really thought about it until you asked me the question. So I kind of just go with the flow. I am a person that does like to plan things out before I go ahead and do them. I don't like having no plan.

However, moving to Japan, I freshly graduated from a master's degree. So thinking back then, this was before the advent of social media and people discovering themselves. So early on, I was just a university student, and I hadn't really thought about self-discovery as such.

However, for a lot of us Australians and New Zealanders, we have our overseas experience where this is our chance to, you know, maybe we've finished university or where we're taking a year off, and we'd go overseas to kind of do our own way and try something different. That's a bit of a self discovery.

That was sort of not, how can I say, I didn't really have that in my mind of what I wanted to do. Therefore, I will move to Japan. It was just, I had been visiting Japan once a year since I started university, and I thought it looked like a really amazing place to live.

I hadn't really given much thought to the language barrier or cultural barriers or anything like that. How would it all work out? Like people say it's such a big jump from New Zealand to Japan, culturally, the language, and everything. Weren't you like worried or scared or whatever.

And I had a job lined up, I had a visa and a place to live. I think the basic necessities of life was sort of sorted there. So a year wasn't this thing. Like I was on a journey of self-discovery, or it was really like a 20-year-old’s kind of thing. I'll just give it a go, try teaching English over there and see what it's like.

And then yeah, I never came back. It was just an adventure and I kind of just followed it naturally. And that's how everything sort of turned out.