The Good Habits I’ve picked up in Korea
The Good Habits I’ve picked up in Korea . The respect to elders when pouring and drink to the extreme use of honorifics in the Korean language. You adapt to it. But for the first while it is a task which can stress you out. But It’s all to show respect to your fellow human being. Here is some habits I found that Koreans do really well, that have rubbed off me when I wasn’t aware.
I seem to do this automatically these days when saying hello to someone or when not waving good bye (cause I’m busy bowing). For a really long time I wasn’t aware of this since it obviously just became a habit unconsciously picked up. Now I realize it and can’t stop it. When I do notice what I am doing, it’s already too late. Get some funny stares sometimes too from older people. Bump into someone in the street, you expect to hear a sorry and go along your way. But in Korea, a bow is the accepted form of apology. So if you are planning to come to Korea, you may wanna practice your bowing skills!
As a Westerner for 25 years or so. Coming to Korea and then being told you can’t enter a home unless you take off shoes changes your strategy to what kind of shoes you buy. Convenience is King. Simple and easy to wear shoes make life easier for you. Especially when you go to a restaurant where you need to sit on the floor. You don’t want to be the slowest one to all the delicious food and alcohol do you? In my opinion, It’s a very nice habit to acquire. For one, Its less vacuuming, Since none of the dirt from outside is brought in by your shoes. It also gives your feet a break from being trapped inside shoes all day. Air those toes out and give them a wiggle!
- Singing Karaoke: To be honest, I need to be drunk to do this one, But when I get over the pre karaoke jitters, I normally have a blast. All the pent of rage, frustration, sadness, tough times can just be all pointed at the microphone and BOOM! I feel like I have taken the weight of the world off my shoulders and can fly high for the whole night ( being drunk aside).
- Eating Kimchi: I hated Kimchi for a long long time, would literally look at it like it was my long lost uncle Tom who finally decided to leave for the life of a hermit in the mountains and came back without taking a bath. Anyways when I first tried it, I couldn’t get over the spiciness and overall texture and feel to it. But through some careful and precise pork belly (삼겹살) training. Now I can have it with any sort of Korean meal (But I can”t believe it when Koreans can’t survive a western style meal without eating some kimchi).
- Keen nose for good food on the cheap: Living here, you develop a keen sense for what is tasty and what isn’t. Cause you just have to have the most delicious food right? You can follow where the locals go. But then you might just be waiting half the day. Up to you though. But for me, I wanna find those little treasure troves of food down the alleyways of Hongdae.
These habits I’ve picked up from living in Korea I believe are good habits for me. Kimchi for health. Taking off the shoes cause really who likes to clean? Keen nose for good food cause who doesn’t wanna get fat?
What about you guys? Picked up any habits without realizing you are slowly becoming more koreanized?
Sound off here.