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Lifestyle

Living abroad: how to beat homesickness

By BzAimee 21 Jun 2016

For some of you it's not always as simple as a quick trip back to get rid of that homesick feeling.

What is important to remember is that you're not the only one feeling like this and actually, there are things you can do to help overcome this. Here are just a few tips...

  1.  Join a society. Although that initial freshers' rush is over, you're not too late. It's never too late! Find a society that involves something you enjoy, or one that grabs your attention and try something new. You’re guaranteed to make friends and meet others in your position. 
  2. Cook homely foods. Stealing 'momma's recipes' and recreating them can be a fun way to tackle the sadness of being away from home. Introducing these to your flatmates can also help you feel at home in your new surroundings.
  3.  Healthy living. A healthy lifestyle leads to a healthy mind which is key to positivity! Plus exercise produces endorphins (happy hormones) to help you cheer up as you tone up. So go for a walk or for that gym session, and buy some fresh food while you're out! weight lifting gif
  4. Happy Snaps. A friendly face is helpful at difficult times so put up pictures of family and home friends. Check out your university's printing facilities to see if you can save money, and Wilkinson's is great for budget friendly frames. Or put the pictures on your laptop or phone backgrounds instead. 
  5. Get out of your room! If you're finding it hard to connect with flatmates the best thing to do is to venture to communal areas. Spend longer cooking dinner, read on the sofa or go sit at the kitchen table. It'll increase your chance of getting to know people and you'll feel more comfortable in your surroundings.
  6. Make friends with home students too. Having a good friend base will give you support through good times and bad, and the new culture and language is sure to give you something else to concentrate on. Practice makes perfect, so don't be shy trying to learn!
  7. Schedule calls. With free Viber, Facetime and Skype via wifi, there's really no excuse to lose contact with home. But university can be hectic, and time differences can make it harder to keep in touch, so schedule times when you're all available and stick to them.
  8. See what's on! Whether it's day trips to new cities, club nights out, or other social events, check your Students' Union website to get involved. New people and new experiences will make homesickness a distant memory.
  9. Don't let things pile up. If you're struggling with your course talk to your lecturers or student support services. Just don't panic! You've made it this far, so think, 'I can do this!'
  10. Keep busy. The more you sit doing nothing, the more alone you'll feel. So decorate your room, go to the gym, hit the library, just do something. Accomplish something and make yourself feel good!

It's completely normal to feel homesick, whether you've moved city or country but giving these a go will surely help you on that path to overcoming it. 

Your time at university will fly by so embrace it while you can!

 

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