Benefits of Having Friends From All Around The World
3 minutes read
- Written by Yubo Team
What are the benefits of having friends from all around the world?
There are so many perks to having international friendships, it is hard to fit them all into this blog. To list a few: you can have valuable cultural exchanges, pick up pieces of a new language, get local recommendations, and so much more. At a minimum, having friends from all over the globe gives you a deeper understanding of the world we live in.
There are plenty of ways to make international friends!
With the power of the internet, you can easily chat by messaging or video with people you have never met before living in places you never even knew existed. You have probably had online interactions with people from other countries without even knowing it. Look at Yubo for example, you have access to the whole world in the palm of your hand. You can literally live stream with people from another country anytime you open the app. One of our users even wrote an article about his experience making international friends on Yubo. Friends from all over the word don’t always need to live in another country or be met on some grand adventure. It can also be as simple as having lunch with an international student or someone who has immigrated to your community that you welcome with open arms.
Does having friends from all over the world make you more open minded?
The answer to that is 100% yes! When one of your friends is from another country there is a constant cultural exchange going on. It helps you practice multiculturalism, which helps you be more accepting of others: whether it is religion, skin tone, culture or ideology. There are countless things we take for granted or think are normal everywhere. For example, if you live in Switzerland, you probably think everyone has convenient access to the world's best drinking water right from their tap, but this is far from the case. In some countries, you can’t drink any of the tap water. And if you live in Hawai’i you are likely used to rinsing your plates before using them in case a cockroach has scrambled across it. But, that might sound real freaky to someone who lives in New York. There are infinite comparisons you can make to highlight the world's subtle differences, but those differences are fascinating and can make for great conversation starters.
There is so much to be learned from different cultures and perspectives. For example, in Samoa they still have strong ties to their history, despite being colonized multiple times. Every landscape or food source has a story behind it. That mountain range is not just a mountain, it is actually a sleeping giant who lay there to rest for so long that he became part of the earth. Even coconuts have fantastical lore behind them. These rich friendships make you more empathetic towards worldly topics and issues. By knowing how different cultures and countries can be, it is impossible to look at a global topic as black and white.
What is the coolest part of having international friends?
The priceless cultural exchanges you have are the best part. Don’t get me wrong, having friends from across the world makes traveling a lot more fun! It adds locations you would have never thought to go to, like why go to Italy when your bestie has told you all about the wonderful sights in Tahiti? On top of that, you are able to get a genuine local experience in that new environment. You won’t get caught up in the surface level tourist traps, which are never good for the locals by the way. Instead, you have the chance to immerse yourself in a new community and culture with local recommendations directly from a friend. Opportunities like that are hard to come by.
Who needs Duolingo when you can actually speak with someone in another language. Apps and translators are definitely helpful for getting the basics down, but often they are not common phrases or the way people actually speak with each other. At a minimum, with international friends you will at least pick up a couple phrases or words. You might even incorporate some into your own vocabulary. If nothing else, it can at least be a quick flex. You might even run into the perfect opportunity to actually use those words or phrases. I always like learning how to say thank you in other languages because it just might brighten up someone else's day. For example, I learned how to say thank you in Thai and the next time I went to one of my favorite Thai restaurants, I used it. The owner’s face lit up with a big smile and they got a little excited and said it back. Sometimes, it’s the small things in life that can make the biggest differences.