Homesickness is the term used to describe the emotions of melancholy, anxiety, or tension that you may experience when you are separated from your usual surroundings and people.

Homesickness will prove to be more difficult than it was before the epidemic for new international students who may be traveling for the first time to study abroad after spending months indoors and with family.

When you find yourself in a foreign land with a foreign culture, sometimes even a foreign language, it can be difficult to be apart from your loved ones (family, friends, or partners), your pets, and your traditions.Even though I didn’t study abroad, I can understand how it feels to miss home because I once moved from my hometown to a huge city where the weather, pace of life, and people were all very different from what I was used to.

We at International Student Insurance would like to share with you some strategies that can help you overcome the feeling of homesickness while you adjust to your new environment and the people around you.

1. Let yourself feel sad and lonely for a while.

Yes, we know that you have to concentrate on your studies, especially if you’re on a scholarship, but it’s better to let your emotions out than to bottle them up. I’ve found a great way to cope is to set a specific time each day to cry or to just feel sad. This way, you’ll release your emotions in a controlled way, allowing you to move on with your day and other important tasks. Another way to deal with your emotions is to write down your feelings in a journal. As time goes on, you will start to feel more comfortable with the thought of being far away from home!

2. Discover a new favourite spot in the host nation.

Sometimes homesickness isn’t just about people, it’s also about places we love to visit. We all have a favorite spot in our city, whether it’s a coffee shop, a library, or just being close to nature like the beach’s woods. For me, it’s the cafeteria around the corner – I go there sometimes on Saturdays for a cup of coffee and a bite to eat, usually with a book. I think being surrounded by a calming atmosphere can really help you when you’re feeling down or homesick. Being in a new country can be intimidating at first, but think of all the amazing places you can explore and how exciting it is to try new foods or do new things!

3. Practice self-care.

Doing small things for yourself can really boost your happiness and make you feel better! Self-care can be different for everyone. Cooking your favorite food, taking a bath with your favorite bath products, or meditating or doing yoga are all great ways to treat yourself when you’re feeling down. Did you know that exercising can help your body when you’re sad? Your brain releases more serotonin, which makes you feel better and gives you more energy. Taking time to do what makes you happy can help fight off those sad feelings.

4. Meet new peoples.

For some, it might be easier than others, but forming new relationships in your host country will help ease the homesickness. Bear in mind that, like you, a lot of other international students are going through the same thing, and you should use this as a chance to meet new people and experience different cultures. Also, make sure your university or college has activities or clubs that you can join, so you can keep yourself occupied and connect with more people who have similar interests or hobbies to you.

5. Communicate with family and friends at home (but not overmuch!)

When you’re away from home, it’s normal to feel homesick, but if you call your family more often than once a week, it can make the feeling worse! So, try to limit your contact with them while you’re away. Also, try to avoid social media, as you won’t be able to keep up with what your friends and family are up to back home. Instead, try to explore your new environment and meet new people.

If you’re feeling homesick when you start your international studies, it’s normal and usually just temporary. But if you start to feel tired and have trouble sleeping, it could be a sign of depression. It’s important to talk to someone if you’re feeling down, as you’re not alone. Many universities provide free counseling for students, and there are plenty of other resources available. Check out some helpful resources below.

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