I've been working at a company in Japan for the past 6 months. I really am not enjoying my life here as much as I thought I would (both at work and out), so I am thinking of handing in my resignation and returning to my country for a bit.

What would be a good reason to give for resigning if, ultimately, my only reason is that I don't like living here? I'd like to leave on the best terms possible but I realize this is difficult given the fact that I'm leaving after only half a year.

EDIT: Now that I think about it more there are several reasons. At work, my boss quit a few months after I joined so I had to take on a bunch of responsibilities which I didn't want or ask for, or know how to deal with properly. I also had to take two interns under my wing, one of which had been there longer than myself, which I thought was ridiculous. That intern has quit now so this leaves me and another guy to do all the work. Outside of work, I am just not really thrilled of living in Japan anymore as I thought I'd be.

  • 2
    Why do you feel you have to give a reason?
    – AakashM
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 8:23
  • I don't want to leave on bad terms
    – DaniG2k
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 8:31
  • 4
    You're homesick, that's all the reason you need to give and I'd be very surprised if anyone pressed you further. Especially if you stress that it's not that you don't like Japan it's that you miss home
    – motosubatsu
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 9:16
  • The question as asked sounds like a duplicate, but I feel this one has an important culture shock/homesickness angle that warrants a different response.
    – Seth R
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 14:45
  • I agree that being homesick for your native country is a perfectly valid reason to resign from a job. Heck, here in Toronto, Canada, it's not uncommon for people to resign because the commute is too long (ie: they want to work somewhere closer to their own suburb.) Maybe things are different in Japan, but I don't think anyone here would bat an eyelash about the idea of an immigrant employee deciding he wanted to go back to his home country.
    – Steve-O
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 15:44

3 Answers 3


Wanting to return to your home country will virtually always be considered a valid reason for resignation. In fact, the reason is so generally accepted, you probably won't even need to cite other workplace-related reasons.

Having said that, emigrating to another country is often difficult - especially if there is a language barrier. These things take time - but if you already now feel that your expectations and reality are too far apart to ever really meet, perhaps it is time to cut your losses.

  • To elaborate a bit more on this, if you think that under the right circumstances ( guidance for your by a senior, hiring a replacement to offload the overwhelming work balance ) it can work you might as well give it a try. If you consider they dont plan to do anything about it, by all means mention nothing other than you feel homesick and be on your way.
    – Leon
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 7:21
  • 1
    We've been trying to recruit a senior - I've been doing so many interviews for it - but once we start negotiating the salary most people do not want the job as it pays very little compared to what engineers in this position normally get. So it's doubly stressful because people aren't willing to on-board and I am being tasked with more things
    – DaniG2k
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 7:49

What you are going through is entirely normal. Given your time frame, it sounds like you're right in the middle of what's called the "trough of disillusionment", which is a typical stage in the process of culture shock. I'm going to take a guess: When you first got into the country you were having a lot fun. All the differences of the new culture were exciting and you really enjoyed exploring your new surroundings. But then over time it started getting annoying. You started missing the comforts of home and the strangeness of your new location really started to set in. This was compounded by the fact your job started getting hard when your old boss left and now you just want out, you're done.

Most people go through a cycle like this when they immerse themselves in a new culture. At first everything is fun and exciting, but over time it wears down and can get downright depressing. This is very common. But if they stick with it and fight through that trough, what they find is things tend to get better. Eventually their new surroundings start becoming more familiar and eventually they feel just like they're at home.

So before you make any decisions, ask yourself if you really want to go home now, or if you are just in middle of the low point of this very common cycle. Do you know anyone else from your home country? Go out to get a coffee with them. Call a friend at home. Try and find some little comfort that reminds you of home. Maybe a restaurant that serves food fro your home country. Take some time for yourself and remind yourself that things will get better. It would be a shame to give up on a cool experience like this just because of a temporary bad feeling.

Unless you have a contract locking you in place, you really don't need a reason to resign. Employment is generally a free will thing. You can leave for any reason or no reason. So, if you decide you really do need to go home. That it is all just too much to take, I think saying you miss home and want to go back is a perfectly valid reason to resign. But I would ask you to consider whether that is something you really want to do first.

Good luck!


If they ask why you resigned after six month, I'd think a "I was returning to my home country" would be a reasonable and acceptable reason, that really would not require further elaboration.

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