What to Do When You Feel Homesick

Feeling homesick? It’s a terrible feeling that can happen often your first semester or suddenly creep up on you in the middle of terms. You are definitely not alone! Other students will express their homesickness in different ways as well as cope with them the way they know how. Here are some ways to help curb the homesickness and help you feel more comfortable at college.

First off, schedule time to talk to your family and friends back home. Once or even twice a week is often enough to help you remember that you have people back home thinking about and rooting for you. Of course, the occasional surprise phone call is fine, just try to keep your phone time to a minimum so that you can give yourself room to enjoy school and make new friends, too.

Also, if you don’t have something from back home that will make you miss it less, ask your parents to send it to you. Is it a framed picture you left behind or your childhood stuffed animal? No matter what it is, if it matters to you, make sure you have it near you to help you feel more comfortable.

Maybe you have friends in your dorm who feel the same way you do? Bring it up in conversation, and you’ll find that many of your new friends feel the same exact way. That first step toward sharing just that bit of information may actually make you feel better and get you on your way to feeling less homesick.

Watch movies or TV shows that your family and friends used to love watching together. Sometime an hour or two of entertainment will bring back old feelings and make your transition to school a little bit easier.

Keep yourself busy! Distractions can help take your focus away from home and on to new and exciting things happening around you. Join a few clubs, take up an intramural sport or find a small on-campus job that you enjoy. Take your new friends up on their offers to hang out, explore off-campus or study together.

Volunteer for a cause that is important to you. It’s a form of distraction that can open your eyes to other people’s life challenges and how you can help. It might even make your situation seem not as bad in comparison.

Finally, be sure, as always, to heed the advice of a counselor, resident adviser or other trusted adult on campus. You will be surprised how many students have also come to them missing home. They will have answers from a variety of resources and experiences that will perfectly fit your situation and personality and help you feel better in no time.

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