It’s January and you’re back to school after almost a month at home for Christmas. Though you enjoyed being cooked for and sleeping in your own bed, you probably eventually got bored at home and started craving the freedom you’d experienced in your first term.
A few weeks into the new year however, you may start to notice that things are getting to you a lot more than they previously had. You’re fed up with how messy the kitchen always is, it’s a hassle avoiding that one flatmate you can’t stand, your halls are actually way too noisy and your tiny room is so cramped and you spend so much time in there watching Netflix that you actually might be going a little bit stir-crazy. All of a sudden, you just want to go home.
The horrible feeling of being homesick crept up on me when I returned to Uni after the Christmas break in First Year. I moved all the way from London to Edinburgh to study because I really wanted to experience living somewhere else. I absolutely loved being a fresher and meeting new people. I loved Edinburgh and having a new area to explore and, having not experienced any nightlife in London, I made it my mission to be out all the time.
However, after being at home for such a significant amount of time over Christmas, it’s only natural you should miss home comforts when you leave again. Perhaps the novelty of Uni wears off slightly as nothing is as new or exciting as it was back in September.
Here are ten top tips for dealing with feeling homesick:
- Accept that you’re homesick- It’s important to recognise that you don’t have to be okay with being away from home. You’ve been through a huge change in moving away and you don’t have to pretend to be handling it perfectly.
- Talk to someone- Talk to a flatmate, friend or a family member. You will realise how common feeling homesick is, as someone will almost definitely be able to relate to how you feel and talk you through it.
- Keep busy- The easiest way to deal with homesickness is to distract yourself. The more you sit alone in your room and think about the fact you miss home the worse you feel. Continue to go out with friends and try not to shut down.
- Continue to make new friends- You don’t have to stick with the friends you made in Freshers week- get out there and meet even more people to hang out with. This should keep you busy and make being away from home exciting again!
- Spend time on your own- It is important to not push yourself too hard and to have the odd evening in on your own to relax and be alone with your thoughts.
- Exercise- This goes hand in hand with being busy; being active really is the best medicine for a fed up mind.
- Find something familiar to keep with you- Moving away doesn’t have to be all change; you should try keeping familiar things near you, such as the same duvet cover or dressing gown as you had at home. It helped me to have photos of friends and family all around my room.
- Don’t drop your hobbies- Make sure you still do the things you loved to do at home. Keep listening to the music you love, watching the TV shows you love and playing the sport you always have so you don’t feel like you’re losing yourself.
- Keep in contact- Calling your mum every day may actually make the homesickness worse- but staying in touch daily through something like group chat is a great way to still feel like a constant part of each other’s lives.
- Explore- Remember that you’ve moved away from home in order to experience different surroundings. So get out there and make the most of being in a new place; get involved in local activities and find new places to hang out!
These top ten tips should help you cope with being homesick and enable you to enjoy your freedom at University again.