You can find many examples of students from abroad. It is always incredibly exciting to travel, to get to know new countries and live in a new city – it even doesn’t matter if it’s only for a short period. For youth, especially when a person is a student, there is the possibility to have all of those things while combining it with education – become a student from abroad! Of course, there are many tests and application forms which may not be the same as in your country, but without passing them you will not have a chance to go anywhere. But, it is always possible to prepare to a test, while it is not as easy to get used to the new conditions of life.
Not everyone can easily leave a family and friends, even if it’s for some years, and start an independent life in new country. For someone, it is easy to adapt to a new country, while others feel themselves unwell. Here comes the homesickness, or a kind of depression which we feel while being away from our families. It is a widespread problem for all international students. That is why we gathered the main tips about this phenomenon and how to overcome it.
The Impact of Homesickness
Sometimes, you can hear that homesickness is good and you must have it. Of course, you should have the feeling of missing your native place anyway, but the real homesickness is worse than that. The first one is an ordinary feeling, while the second is a psychological illness.
Homesickness is a deep depression. You can be the happiest person in the world, you may win the scholarship programs and pass the exams for the best marks; you can even be the best student ever – but it all doesn’t mean anything if you are not ready to have an independent life far away from your intimate people. The feeling of homesickness spoils all time spending abroad and you will not have a great time there. It may also affect your educational process, which is the actual purpose of your arriving to another country.
Rules of Self Preparation
Being a student from abroad is an unforgettable experience, so if you do not want to lose it, you should do your best to fight the homesickness. It is worth your attention to prepare yourself at the beginning, just at the time when you make a decision about becoming a foreign student. If you are not ready to live without your family at this stage, think about your plans one more time – maybe you should change them.
When you are sure about moving, you should concentrate on some general needs. It’s important to start the preparation for living alone when you are at home, before leaving. It means cleaning, cooking, washing clothes etc. It is necessary to learn how to take care of your everyday life when you are still with your parents. You can ask them about everything right now, because you will not have any time for it later. Note, that the preparation ends when you leave your house and go to the airport (or the train station), and your time is limited.
Take Some Memorable Things
You can have a couple of souvenirs and beautiful trifles (just some memorable things and other tiny things), that you may have in another country. Of course, you will get a lot of presents from family and friends before you leave, so you will have a variety of choices. However, it’s not necessary to have all these things with you, because plenty of memorable things can also become a cause of the homesickness. The best option is to take some pictures, photos and maybe your favorite books, since those things may become useful to be closer to home while staying a part of your new life.
It goes without saying that when you come to the new city for the first time, you are scared. The best way to suppress you fears is to find a new group of people, because friends distract you from the sad thoughts. In the modern society, there are plenty of ways to get connected with your future fellows – you can find out about the hobbies of your group on the Internet. It means that you may add the students on different social networks – and bingo, you’re not alone anymore! It is also good to find new friends among foreign students from your native country. Of course, you may be students in different places now, but these people can understand you the best and even support you because they know your feelings.
It is always cool not to be at home, especially when you have your first days in a foreign country. You can ask your new friends or fellow students to go for a walk. But if you didn’t find a company for a pleasant time spending, you can go out alone. In some cases, it is even better, because you can it is easier to become accustomed to a new place alone. In this way you can pay attention to different things which may be of importance for you. Do not be at home no matter what! It is not an arduous task to find a place to visit in a new country because there are so many things to see and to do.
Keep in Touch with Your Family
In most cases, the feeling of homesickness is caused by our dependence on the family to be there for us. We get it into a habit that they do almost everything for us and we can do whatever we want without having to worry about anything. However, when you move to another country, you face the problem of dealing with your life on your own.
Nowadays, there are many ways to find the connection with anyone else, even if you are far away from each other. Try to communicate with your family as soon as you can during the first days, and then reduce the number of your conversations. In general, international students speak with their families 2-3 times per week. But it is your personal need, so mind the way it makes you feel and adjust accordingly.
The Relationship with Family
Not only missing your family can become a problem: when you are far from each other, a lot of problems can appear. Relationship with the parents is one of the biggest concerns of every student. In the end, some of them get homesickness, while others break all the ties. Your moving means beginning of the adulthood. The clash of self-dependence and parental care in most cases leads to a conflict between the student and his or her family. It is good when both you and your family are ready to face your growing-up, as there will not be any conflict. But when your and your parents’ opinions are completely opposite, you should be ready to give in to the demands or defend your position.
To begin with, explain your family that you have grown up – you have to convince them that it is very important to be able to face the reality and solve problems on your own in our modern society. It would be great to introduce your parents to the parents of other students who are convinced of the need for adolescence. They will change their mind faster if they hear the confirmation of your words from someone of their age. But do not forget to speak with your parents completely – they love you and they wish you only the best.
Focus on the Current Problems
You have a lot on your plate after moving to another country, so any amount of homesickness may distract you from other important things. Concentrate more on your future and suppress your past. Everyone knows that the new students always go through a kind of fighting with oneself – hiding fears and showing one’s best sides. The first impression of you should be positive and pleasant, because it can make your first days easier. Friendly and sociable students can find friends more quickly, thus overcoming their homesickness faster.
Start planning your first days in the university in advance. Choose your best clothes, shoes and a bag, take notebooks and pens, think about your behavior. There are indeed many tasks for you, so do not waste your time on feeling homesick.
The best advice is, probably, not to focus on the homesickness. Find yourself an occupation and spend your days with benefits for your future. You will get used to a new life in no time – you just have to wait.