How to deal with Homesickness for College Student
When you move, you become independent, you become alone, it is very very common to feel homesickness.
Especially for college students, who are away from families and old friends, it might be strong.
Let's explore how to deal with it together.
Why you feel Homesickness
Homesickness is an emotional experience many individuals encounter when they find themselves away from their familiar surroundings, routines, and loved ones.
It's akin to a nostalgic yearning for the comfort of home.
At its core, homesickness is tied to our basic human need for connection, familiarity, and security.
Our home environment often represents a space where we feel safe, accepted, and loved. When separated from this environment—be it due to work, studies, or travel—we may feel uprooted and yearn for the comfort and predictability it provides.
Neurologically speaking, familiar settings and memories trigger a release of the hormone oxytocin, which promotes feelings of attachment and love. Being away from these familiar triggers can hence lead to feelings of loneliness and longing.
How to deal with Homesickness
1. Stay Connected with Family
Staying connected with your family can provide immense relief during bouts of homesickness. Your family understands your roots, shared experiences, and the nuances of your life like no one else.
Speaking with them can evoke a feeling of being "at home" even if you're miles away. Scheduled regular calls, video chats, and even exchanging photographs or letters can help bridge the emotional gap.
The beauty of technology today is that it can recreate intimate moments, like sharing a meal over a video call or reading a bedtime story to a younger sibling.
You can use wave app for that, especially you will be able to know their availability better on wave by using online function or wave function which let others know you wanna talk to them.
2. Make New Friends
While holding onto past connections is crucial, building new relationships in your current environment is equally important.
Engaging with new people introduces you to diverse perspectives and can make you feel more integrated into your new setting.
By participating in group activities, workshops, or even attending social gatherings, you create opportunities to meet like-minded individuals. Over time, these relationships can grow and provide a new "home away from home."
Hobbies will help you a lot actually. I started to play basketball again with friends when I started to live alone and it helped me so much.
3. Go out from home
Just walking around is okay, when you are just at home watching social media, netflix hbo etc, that makes you feel so much lonely.
Engage with your new environment. Explore local parks, eateries, landmarks, and cultural hubs.
The more you familiarize yourself with your surroundings, the more integrated and comfortable you'll feel.
Being proactive about experiencing your new environment helps combat feelings of alienation. Plus, the act of discovery can be therapeutic, shifting your focus from what you're missing to the new experiences you're gaining.
4. Away from Social Media
While staying connected through social media can be comforting, it can also exacerbate feelings of homesickness.
Seeing regular updates of friends and family back home, or seeing your hometown's events play out without you, might make the distance feel even more pronounced.
It’s beneficial to take breaks from social media, limiting your exposure to these triggers. Instead, focus on being present in your current environment, engaging in real-time experiences, and giving yourself a chance to adapt without constantly being pulled back into what you left behind.
5. Call with Friends
Friends, especially those from home, are a direct link to your past and shared memories. Engaging in conversations with them can serve as a reminder that distance hasn’t eroded the bond you share. Discussing current events, revisiting old jokes, or planning future meet-ups can keep the relationship dynamic and provide a counterbalance to feelings of isolation. Also, friends can offer an outsider's perspective on your new environment, providing support and advice on acclimating.
Other Small Activities to Make You Feel Better
Bring a piece of home with you. This could be a cherished blanket, photos, or even a specific scent. Filling your new space with familiar objects can make it feel more comforting.
Keep a Journal
Writing down your feelings can provide an outlet for your emotions. Over time, you may see patterns in what triggers homesickness or find comfort in recognizing how you've grown and adapted.
Cooking and Baking
Making traditional or favorite dishes from home can be therapeutic. The familiar tastes and smells can evoke comforting memories.
Engage in Artistic Expression
Drawing, painting, or creating music that reflects your feelings can be therapeutic. Art can serve as both an expression of longing and a way to process emotions.
Listen to Familiar Music
Music is deeply tied to memories and emotions. Playing your favorite songs or tunes that remind you of home can bring comfort.
Joining groups or associations related to your hometown or culture can provide a sense of belonging. Celebrating festivals or traditions with others who understand their significance can be uplifting.
Personal Growth Activities
Take this time away from home as an opportunity for self-growth. Attend workshops, learn a new skill, or indulge in self-care routines.
Adopt a Plant or Pet
Caring for something else, like a plant or pet, can provide companionship and a sense of purpose.
Volunteering can help foster connections with others and provide a sense of purpose. Helping out can also be a great way to feel more integrated into your new community.
Visualization and Mindfulness
Guided meditations that focus on visualizing your loved ones or favorite places can be comforting. At the same time, mindfulness practices can ground you, helping you feel more connected to your current environment.