10 Tricks To Beat Homesickness

Whether you’re having the time of your life during your Kaplan Experience or struggling to settle in, many students experience bouts of sadness that are otherwise known as homesickness. From missing home comforts or friends and family, homesickness is very common. To prevent it from ruining your experience, here's our 10 tricks to beat homesickness.

 1. Put up pictures and reminders of your loved ones in your new home. Putting up pictures of things that make you smile or reminders of your loved ones will help you to settle in, and can help you to feel that your family will always be with you. This will help your new area to feel familiar and homely, and will hopefully prevent you from longing for home.

2. Get into a routine Getting into a routine is a great way of beating homesickness. From going to scheduled exercise classes to after college clubs, scheduling activities and sticking to them will give you something to look forward to, and make your new environment feel like home.

3. Find a favourite place Like getting into a routine, another great way of beating homesickness is finding a favourite place. Whether it’s a certain spot in a park, a coffee shop or the mall, finding somewhere familiar that will cheer you up when you are sad and somewhere that feels like home will bring normality to your life, and will help to ease homesickness.

4. Keep busy + get lost in a new activity Keeping busy is one of the best ways to beat feelings of homesickness. Use this fresh start as an opportunity to try something you’ve always wanted to try, whether it’s a sport or a hobby. Immerse yourself into this new activity and concentrate on achieving something new. The more time you devote to your new hobby, the less time you will have to think about missing home.

5. Make new friends The sooner you make friends, the sooner you will find being away from home more bearable. Having a friend provides you with a distraction from feeling sad and gives you someone to talk to about it. Although making new friends won’t replace your old ones, making new friendships  also means that you have people to make new memories with, allowing you to feel more familiar and at home in your new environment.

6. Join a club Joining a club is not only a great way to fill your time and keep your occupied, but it’s also a great way to make friends with people who share the same interests as you. Love netball? Joining the netball club will help you to bond with like-minded people and keep you distracted from feeling homesick.

7. Keep a journal or diary One of the things we love most about our homes is that they provide a sense of comfort and security. Writing in a journal or diary will provide you with something to put your feelings into, and can hopefully prevent you missing these qualities from your home. Writing things down is often therapeutic too, and is a great way of processing your thoughts and taking the weight of worry off of your shoulders.

8. Make a bucket list   Another great way to control homesickness is to create a project for yourself and set yourself targets. Set yourself targets that will remind you why you decided to study abroad, and targets that will make you feel good about yourself once they have been achieved. The project doesn’t have to be academic; it could just involve making a bucket list of places that you want to see before you leave. This will give you something fun to do, and keep you focused on your current experience, instead of focusing on what you’re missing back home.

9. Host a cooking evening Although you might not realise it, food is often one of the biggest causes of homesickness. Even if you love everything about your new home, it is likely that you miss certain foods and your favourite meals. Hosting a cooking evening is a great way to beat this, as it allows you to cook a meal that you’re craving, while giving you the opportunity to spend time with new people and try their favourite foods.  

10. Be positive A positive mind-set is one of the most important factors for beating homesickness, and being generally happy. Just remember that your time away from home is temporary, and that it’s important to enjoy the experience you are currently having, instead of longing to be somewhere else. Try and make a list of 3 positive things about your new location every day to remind you of why you came.          

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