Leaving your home country to study abroad is a life-changing decision that can open up plenty of incredible opportunities to broaden your horizon, explore the new environment, forge new friends, create lasting memories and grow as an individual. However, being away from home can be tough especially if it’s your first time. There are moments that even the most independent person in the world misses his loved ones and home country. Occasional feelings of homesickness are completely normal when studying abroad and it can affect people of all ages in almost any situation. However, there are ways that you can take to prevent homesickness while studying abroad and learning to love your new environment will enable you to explore the opportunities therein.
- Get Involved and keep and yourself busy
Homesickness usually originates from feeling like you don’t belong and not knowing what to do when in an unfamiliar environment. A powerful way to deal with this feeling is to get involved in activities on campus as well as in the local community. Most universities promote a diverse global atmosphere, and joining an international student society is a great way to meet fellow students experiencing a similar situation like you. These students are also likely to be missing home, which means sharing your experiences with each other will open up a friendly and understanding support network you know you can rely on.
Universities are also well-known for hosting fun and lively campus activities. Getting involved with some of the clubs and societies are an effective way to connect with others and integrate with the community. If you are a sport lovers joining the international sport team can be your chance to show the new environment your gifted talents and since most of your home friend would not be there with you, watching some videos online will be a creative way to improve yourself and outshine your international student counterpart. However, there are innovative ways to watch Netflix online and learning the methods will assist you in surfing online.
- Keep in touch with home
Keeping in touch with your family and friends will make you feel that you are part of things back home. However, but don’t spend all of your time talking to them, life is about balance. Skype, Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat are all free ways to have your moment with your loved ones and share your experience. Remember you need to be doing fun stuff in between as well so you have stories to tell people back home. You can also further ensure security in your communications with a VPN service like ExpressVPN.
- Make your new home feel like home
Do everything you can to turn your new home into a familiar place that makes you feel more at home. Doing this will bring more comfort to you. Whether it’s your favorite teddy bear or your favorite cozy pillow, home comfort can serve continues reminders that you are not so far from home. If you are not sure of what to bring, check out these tips to be aware of essential things to take along with you.
- Don’t hesitate to ask for help
If you find all the above tips difficult to combat you homesickness, don’t hesitate to ask for help from the staff at your host university. You deserve to be happy, healthy and to enjoy your study abroad. If you are shy to ask your colleagues, seek out guidance and counseling services and see how they can help to improve your situation. They are there to ensure you are comfortable and help you feel at home. They are trained to handle your situation; they understand the challenges international students have to face and have the skills and expertise to be able to guide you to the perfect source for help.