Update: We did an updated article on how to cope with homesickness at college
1. Schedule Visits
Even if you’re so far away that the only time you’ll be heading home is for Christmas break, write it on a calendar. Don’t obsess over the date, but take note of it every day. This gives you something to look forward to and will help you grasp the (likely much quicker than expected) passage of time.
2. Make This Your New Home
Try referring to your new surroundings as home, even if only to yourself. Yes, it’s temporary and you probably have a room full of stuff still at mom’s, but put that logic aside and try to convince yourself that this is a comfortable, familiar place. It may not seem like it, but the “fake it ’til you make it” approach really can be effective in this situation!
3. Decorate Your Space
And not with a giant collage of family photos! There are lots of great ways to personalize your new surroundings on a budget, even if it’s just hanging up a few of your favorite posters!
4. Write A Letter Home
You don’t even have to send it, but taking the time to sit down, focus, and put your emotions into words can really help you cope. If you don’t have anyone specific at home that you want to write to, write to your “home” as an entity; “Dear Home, I really miss you right now, etc”. Be as detailed and emotional as you can be. Pour everything you’re feeling onto that paper, then seal it up and send it away.
5. Be Optimistic
Think of everything you’re about to experience. Sure it can seem scary and stressful at first, but you’re embarking on a whole new stage of life, one that could turn out to be a blast. You’re finally on your own and that doesn’t have to be a bad thing at all. It’s the perfect opportunity to get to know yourself and what you’re capable of.
6. Realize This Is Not Forever
If nothing else on this list works and you’re still miserable, remember that time passes pretty quickly and it really won’t be long before your circumstances change. Make the most of this experience for as long as you can because inevitably this is not your permanent location.
7. Get Physical
Turn on some music and dance. Jump on an exercise bike. Go for a jog. Join a yoga group. The endorphins released from physical activity can help you to overcome even the most severe homesick sad times! Plus it might just keep that freshman fifteen at bay!
8. Be Social
Even if your gut says to stay inside and weep over pictures of your siblings, go out! There are a million ways to get involved and meet new people at college, people who are actually going through or have gone through exactly what you’re feeling. It will help to realize that being away from home does not mean you’re alone!
Just don’t think about it. Yea, it’s easier said than done, but you can do it! Stay busy and when you feel yourself starting to wallow, get out and do something! Check out a coffee shop or take a tour of your campus, anything that snaps you out of the sad mindset!
10. Call Your Mom
(Or your dad, or your brother, or your grandmother). When all else fails, picking up the phone and talking to the person/people you’re missing so badly isn’t a bad thing. If it only makes you feel worse, perhaps resist doing so next time, but in all likeliness you’ll feel a little bit better after hearing their voice(s).
What can you add?
What do you do when you’re feeling homesick at college? Let us know your advice in the comments section below!