The stereotypical perception of our parents letting us travel or take a gap year is almost impossible for us. Even when you just got to UNI after 13 years of schooling and you’d really like to see what else there is outside of education…it would still be no.
They would say things like
“Why do you want to go to Europe? Stay here, its dangerous there!”
I can’t speak for other ethnics but I know the vast majority of Asian parents would not allow their children to take a gap year or travel alone.
So how did i do it? (Convincing guide)
Well first, you need to understand what your parents want, every parent or the majority of parents only want the best for you, they only want to guide you in the right direction so you’re not making a mistake, if you understand this, then you’re closer to finding that sweet spot.
2. Formulate the your goals
So next you’ll need to formulate this goal of what you want to achieve, and evaluate all the potential outcomes such as what you will give up if you choose to partake in this trip.
My evaluation was:
What i gain – learn, experience, understand, fulfilling my goals set for my self.
What i lose – precious time with my family & friends
At the time when I evaluating this, I was lost, I didn’t know what I wanted to do or be, I needed time to be alone where I was able to think heavily for myself.
You know those times when you’re alone in the city or out in nature with your camera and you start to question and think deeply about everything without interruptions, or what other people wanted you to see or think, you just followed your own instincts, did you what you wanted to do, rather than anyone elses, that was what I needed.
3. The pitch
So I explained to them why this was important for me as it could potentially be the stepping stones that form my future, I needed to see the world for myself, why each countries perform tasks as they do and how? E.g economically 😂 Why some cultures think something is taboo while another doesn’t?
For example in Japan, slurping your noodles is seen as that you’re enjoying your food, where as in western countries it would be considered rude.
Or gifting cultures, in Chinese culture you’re not supposed to gift someone a clock or watch for birthday as it suggests their time is almost up or clock is ticking where as in western culture it is completely normal.
Once I had given them a reason on why it would be the better option for me, they would understand and bound to let you make up your own decisions, as ones life can’t be caged up,
Just like a flower, you don’t teach it to grow, you let them blossom themselves.
This is the stage where they are already convinced of what the best path for you is, but they can’t help to worry and fear because it’s something completely new to them.
This is where you’ll need to do a risk assessment of all the potential scenarios that could happen, mine was pretty funny… not
Worst case scenarios
– Get kidnapped/sold/trafficked
– Die in plane/car/boat crash
– Fall off cliff
– Become extremely sick
Yeah…. these are some pretty bad scenarios however, realistically it does happen to people,
But I mean it could happen to me even while I’m at home? So why’s it stopping me?
Once you calculate the chances, you’ll find that the more likely situation that would occur is someone pick-pocketing you in Italy,
yes that happened to me, luckily my friends spotted the group of pickpockets and stopped then. Thanks Fanny & Nikki if you read this!
5. Easing their fears
Next you’ve got to ease your parents fears and explain why these scenarios shouldn’t be likely to affect your trip as you’ve planned backups even if it occurs, (not the death part sorry)
6. Acting upon your plans
If you don’t commit towards your plan and live up to the words you’ve pitched to your parents, you can kiss goodbye to it all.
7. Love your parents because even if they may have stopped you from doing something that you really wanted to do, it all leads back to them just trying to guide you in the direction of what they think is the best for you.
Hope you enjoyed the read,
let me know what you think,