Although it’s normal to feel homesick when you start college, homesickness can become a problem if it starts to interfere with your capability to live a normal college student life. You may constantly be checking in with old friends instead of trying to make new ones. You may prefer to stay in your room than go to events and sign up for extracurricular activities. The good news is there are tactics you can use to overcome homesickness and feel at ease at college.
1. Live Like a Tourist
Spend your first few weeks at college as if you were a tourist, exploring the area to discover what’s around. Check out local cafés and businesses and find places nearby where you could spend time on the weekends, such as hiking trails and parks. As you start making friends, you can introduce them to the great places you find — they’ll definitely be impressed.
2. Eat Your Favourite Meals
Make college feel like home by preparing meals you normally eat with your family. If you’re not the best cook, search for restaurants that prepare those dishes. You could even request a delivery and have a meal at your new home with your roommates.
3. Join Clubs
A major part of homesickness is the sense of isolation. You can combat this by trying to meet people straight away. Since it can be difficult to make friends in your classes, a better option is often to join clubs. This will allow you to connect with people who have the same interests as you while you’re also exploring your own passions.
Don’t wait for others to approach you — strike up a conversation and see where it takes you. Many other students are likely feeling shy or uncomfortable and may be waiting for someone to say something to them.
4. Become a Student Volunteer
One of the best ways to cope with homesickness is to help others. When you shift your attention away from yourself, it’s easier to forget about your own problems. In addition, you’ll gain a sense of wellbeing from doing something useful. There will be many ways to get involved on campus, including volunteering at events and joining committees.
5. Talk to Your Student Advisor
If you’re struggling to beat homesickness on your own, don’t be afraid to ask for support. Your student advisor can provide you with further guidance, such as advice to navigate the complexities of student life. Plus, your advisor may be able to put you in touch with a mental health professional. This can be helpful, since it’s often easier to talk about personal issues with a counsellor than with your friends.
You’ll beat homesickness much faster if you live somewhere you can truly call home. If you want your own space but you’d still like to be around other students, the best option is student rentals. Barrie has Arcadian Students, located just 10 minutes from campus. You’ll be able to relax in your fully-furnished suite (complete with high-speed internet) or meet other students in the clubhouse, fitness centre, and outdoor area. Apply now to move in by next semester.