In life, every transition comes with many challenges. Transitioning from high school years to now your next 4 college years possess many challenges. From figuring out how to afford it in the first place to deal with symptoms of homesickness a few weeks in. Transitioning is never easy, especially when many aspects of your life are changing along the way.
Homesickness is often defined as the feeling of longing for home when one is absent. About 69% of students reported feeling homesick during the first few weeks of their freshman year in college.
Like many students, you might feel out of place and missing home more than usual. You started a new exciting chapter in your life, and we want to do everything in our power to help you enjoy every bit of it.
We are here to help you obtain the easiest and smoothest transition possible.
Bear with me:
- Contact your loved ones whenever you see fit
- Find distractions (join school activities)
- Make college your home away from home
- Make new friends
- Think about the bigger picture
I broke down each of the tips to further explain each of them
Call your loved ones
We’ve all been there before, so you’re not alone. Whether you are 1,000 miles or just 20 miles away from home, there will be times when you’ll want to see your loved ones. span style=”font-weight: 400;”>One of the best ways to feel at home, even when you’re hundreds of miles aways is by continually communicating with your loved ones (preferably through video chat). Share your weekend plans or just tell them how much you miss them. They’ll probably motivate you to keep pushing through and remind you why you’re in college in the first place.
Distracting yourself works wonders
Having the same daily routine and being on campus at all times can get old and boring. To reduce your feelings of homesickness, take a walk/drive off-campus, and explore the area. It doesn’t matter in which part of the world you’re, just be open to exploring what’s near your school. Join in activities and events, go to farmers’ markets, and try to get used to your surroundings.
Once you develop routines and get to know your new location, things will start to feel more and more like your home away from home.
Now that you know how important it is to contact your loved ones when you miss them and distracting yourself, it’s time to make college homier.
Make college your new home
I mean this one in every sense of the word. Find ways to bring a little piece of your home with you. This can range from bringing your favorite blanket to convince your mom to send you home many cookies at least once a month.
Unless you transfer schools, college really is your home for the next 4 years. It can take a little bit of time to settle in, but surrounding yourself with comfort items can be a huge help.
The more time you spend by yourself, the higher the chances of you actually becoming more homesick. Stay away from your bedroom as much as you can.
Make new friends
College is a great place to meet people who share similar interests as you. You might be missing having your mom’s famous dish for dinner or cuddling with your pets, but this is the time to take advantage of new experiences. You are at the stage where you have the opportunity to meet people from all around the world.
You might meet new people who will be down to doing schoolwork with you. From my own personal experience, I think staying away from your room when you’re not sleeping or relaxing is the best option. If you have to work on class assignments, go to the library, or work with someone in your class. This will be the perfect distraction.
The less time you spend by yourself, the less likely you’re to feel lonely or in need to go home. Go have a meal at one of the dining halls, instead of eating in your room. Most schools offer orientation and floor activities to encourage students to connect with each other and start this fun and important journey together.
Take advantage of the opportunities your school gives you to meet new people! Chances are, those students are also looking for a new group of friends that will help them feel less alone.
In times when you feel like you’re ready to go home, remind yourself that you’re doing this for a greater purpose. You’re going to college to pursue an education and follow your dreams. It can be tough to adjust to the first few weeks in college but think of it in terms of short term struggle that will actually better your future.
We know transitioning can be tough, but once you start adapting things will get better. You’ll begin to feel more at ease with being away from home little by little. Over time you’ll feel better, and this will all just be part of the process.