October 1st, 2009 Jamie
After the busy buzz of Welcome Week activities and the whirlwind of the first few days of classes, it’s not uncommon to get a case of the blues. Living on your own–and trying to make a whole new group of friends!–can be overwhelming. Add that to missing your family and friends from home, and you’ve got a full-blow case of homesickness.
Here’s how to punch homesickness right in the (figurative) nose, no matter what your personality type.
For a former ASB President/Football star/lead in the school play like you, college is a wide wide world of opportunity.
Start the year off right by getting a weekend crowd organized. Celebrate the end of the week by throwing a bonfire, s’mores roast, or cookout while the weather is still nice, and invite as many people as you can. Use your leadership skills to get food, music, location, and rides organized.
Having so much to do–and something to look forward to–will help get your mind off that pesky lonely feeling.
Want a bigger challenge? Figure out how to show an outdoor movie.
Shy Guy (or Gal)
If you’re a naturally shy person, breaking out of your shell in a brand new place may be more than a little challenging. Luckily there are some less in-the-spotlight ways for you to beat the homesickness bug.
Start by trying to meet some people–even if its just a few people you can chat with and sit by in each class. Consistent interaction with fun people is a nice energy boost on a rough day. Also, find out what intriguing clubs or sports are on campus, and try to hit a couple of meetings or games. Be confident, and when you’re feeling scared, remind yourself that you can skip out any time.
Meeting people takes time, so while you’re working on that, keep up a steady stream of contact with your already-established friends. Video chats can make you feel like you’ve just had an hour of hang time with your BFF, and emails or texts keep you in touch at the click of a button.
Above and Beyond
Just a few more ideas to get you out of the rut…
- Helping Hand. One of the best tactics for overcoming homesickness–or any form of self-pity, really–is to focus your energy outward. Instead of worrying about how you feel, focus on how the people around you are feeling, and try to help them out. Whether you’re complimenting your roommate’s shoes or volunteering at a retirement home, making other people feel good will help boost your own mood!
- Work Through It. While I still encourage you to take time to meet and greet new people and create a friend base at school, on the really bad homesick days, you can decide to throw yourself into your studies. And if you have a career goal in mind, put more energy towards networking, interning, and volunteering so you can get a handle on your future.
- Touch Base. Just because you’ve moved doesn’t mean you have to give up the relationships you already have. In fact, as you become an adult and pursue a career, you may find yourself moving several times. Keep the love (or friendship) alive by remembering birthdays and keeping in touch via facebook, texts, phone calls, emails, Skype, or whatever works best for you.
Entry Filed under: academics