The year abroad is difficult – it is hard adjusting to different accents, finding your way around a new town and getting used to a different way of life. However, the positives of this year do outweigh the negatives!
Even so, you’ll probably suffer homesickness at some point on your year abroad and this can happen at different times of the year. Symptoms of this can include:
- Missing family and friends
- Needing to hang out with other English speaking people
- Not wanting to leave your room
"Try to enjoy yourself and do things that you may not have the chance to do at home"
There are ways that you can tackle homesickness; here are some tips:
- If you find it comforting to talk to your family, give them a ring. Sometimes, hearing the voice of someone close can be reassuring
- Write a letter about the things that are bothering you – you don’t have to send this, but it is a good way of getting things off your chest
- Contact your friends, either online or on the phone
- Get yourself something nice, like a bar of chocolate
- Take photos of your loved ones with you, and print out photos from your time abroad too. Seeing photos of a friendly face will reassure you and photos from your year abroad will remind you of the good times you’ve had whilst being away
- Explore the area and do things that you would not be able to do at home. Try and appreciate this new culture and remember that you won’t always be away from home
- Get yourself into a daily routine; you’ll feel less bored knowing what you have to do every day
- Keep a diary of your year abroad that you can read through later; this is a lovely way to look back on the year in the future
- Get out of your room and enjoy some fresh air – a walk or bike ride is great for clearing your head and giving you a fresh perspective
- Read your favourite book or put on your favourite TV show. This will distract you and cheer you up
- Make plans with your friends to do something nice at the weekend – maybe visit a new town or go for a coffee somewhere
The year abroad will be ok. You’ll soon get into a routine, which will help you settle in and get used to a new way of life. You’ll meet some lovely new people and will soon have some nice memories with them to look back on.