By Erica Wong |Staff Writer|
College is frequently referred to as “the best years of your life,” but the initial adjustment may be a bit rocky.
The combined pressure of getting adjusted to an unfamiliar environment, maintaining grades, and meeting new people can really be overwhelming, especially when you’re far from family and friends.
When you’re studying abroad homesickness is something everyone will experience at some point.
There are some methods to coping with the transition.
The most important thing is maintaining a positive attitude and being patient.
Keep cultural differences in mind, the people around you may do things in ways you’re not used to.
Instead of judging, making a conscious effort to assimilate will help you understand your surroundings better, such as listening to the music, attending cultural events, and trying different foods.
It’s also helpful to learn the language, if you haven’t already.
When studying in a place where you’re not familiar with the dialect, the smallest tasks can turn into an ordeal and may be extremely frustrating.
Even knowing a couple of key phrases can take you a long way.
You’d be surprised at how much can be communicated through body language alone.
By the end of your stay you might be an expert in a new language as well as charades.
Being lonely is a huge part of homesickness, so make friends wherever you go. Don’t be shy or afraid to initiate conversation or extend an invitation.
You’ll find that you can have a wonderful time and really connect with someone, even if there is a language barrier.
You can explore your new home and see everything it has to offer.
Enjoy the new city like a vacation at the beginning of your trip.
Seeing all of the popular landmarks and tourist attractions right away will teach you a lot about the history and culture.
After you’ve gotten a general feel for the place, finding a niche will become easier.
Bringing little things that remind you of home, such as pictures will make your new place exciting to come home to.
With all the technology available to us today, keeping in touch with loved ones is easier than ever.
However, be careful not to become so engrossed in what’s happening back home that you’re not making your own memories.
Most importantly, take care of yourself.
Maintaining a routine will help create a sense of normalcy.
Exercise keeps you healthy and is an effective stress-reliever, which is tremendously helpful for anyone feeling a little blue.
Not every day will be the best day, but always remember that the greatest adventures lie just beyond your comfort zone.
Simply letting yourself enjoy the experience with all of the ups and downs will help you grow in incredible ways.
Eventually, you’ll realize that falling in love with a new place helps homesickness more than anything.
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