Starting life at university, especially in a new city or country, can be incredibly exciting. However, it is inevitable that, at some point, you will feel homesick. It is estimated that up to 70% of people will suffer homesickness and is perfectly normal.
Here is our helpful guide about how to deal with homesickness so you can make the most of your time at university.
First and foremost, homesickness is not a weakness, it is not uncommon. The truth is, most of us will experience it at some point in our lives. Once you realise this, you can focus on overcoming homesickness rather than being consumed by it.
Get out there
It is natural to see your room as a safe haven whereby you feel protected and you are within your comfort zone. However, by spending too much time in your room you may prevent yourself from meeting other people, discovering the hidden wonders of the city you have moved to and inevitably, start feeling isolated.
Isolation will enhance your feeling of homesickness so our advice is get out there as much as possible. Do some sightseeing, join university societies, take classes and maybe even use this as an opportunity to try something new.
Being positive is not always easy but it is something that is synonymous with overcoming challenges and success. Remaining positive when things are going well is relatively simple, being positive when times are tough is the hard part.
Our top tip is to incorporate a positive message in your room decoration. Your room can make you feel instantly better if it is decorated to your style. Adding positive pictures and cheerful messages in your design will also help to create a positive vibe.
Above all, do as many things that you enjoy as possible, whether it be going to the gym, reading in the library or learning yoga, when you are enjoying yourself you will automatically feel more positive.
Tackle problems head on
At university you will quickly learn that when it comes to problems or worries the quicker you deal with them, the better. University can be stressful, especially during exam periods. If you allow problems to fester and multiply this will enhance your stress levels and increase the prospect of homesickness.
Keep in touch with those back home
Technology today affords us the luxury of keeping in touch with loved ones, thousands of miles away, simply with a touch of a button. Download Skype, WhatsApp and other services that will allow you keep in contact with loved ones instantly and free of charge.
If parents or grandparents are not tech savvy, it is worth giving them a training course before you leave. This will be worth it in the long run.
When one feels lonely it is all too easy to reach for a chocolate bar or order another take-away, unfortunately an unhealthy diet can lead to problems.
It is important to take care of yourself and eat a healthy balanced diet. Better physical health will lead to you feeling happier, thus reducing the chances of feeling homesick.
University is a great place to meet new people and make some new friends. These friends will be there to help you through exams, coursework and will certainly help you deal with feeling homesick.
You can make new friends on your course, when doing group work, through societies you might decide to join and on social media such as Facebook, Twitter and Weibo