The essence of your home is something difficult to capture. The way it makes you feel, the comfort it provides, and the security it gives sees no parallel. This is why trying to bring those feelings of safety from home to college can prove to be quite the challenge. Whether you’re looking for a few quick tips to cure homesickness, or need a fresh outlook on living on your own, here’s a couple of ideas that are sure to help.
- Make or Bring a Memory
An easy thing many people don’t think of when leaving home is to make a memory. Bringing your family and close friends together for an adventure shortly before you leave serves as a great way to get some closure before you go. It is important to try something none of you have done before on this outing. It helps keep the memory fresh in your mind and makes it easy to differentiate between all the other times you have been together. This experience will then become a positive memory you can easily recall whenever you are missing certain loved ones in your life. This process can easily be repeated anytime you go home for winter or spring break.
Along with making a memory, bringing one can be just as influential on your state of mind. Having a physical reminder of your family and friends is a great way to keep you grounded in the fast-paced world of college. This memory can be something as simple as a necklace with all the first letters of your family and friends’ names to wear every day, or a lucky coin your grandpa gave you as a kid. It truly doesn’t matter what it is as long as it provides comfort and is something you can take with you whenever you need it.
- Bring Scents From Home
One of the strongest ways we remember places and people is by their scent. The instant comfort a candle from home can bring to your room is incredible. Taking some of your mom’s perfume and spraying it on your pillow will leave you feeling soothed from the time you go to bed until you wake up. Even using the same shampoo as your mom or sister can give you a sense of calmness. Bringing any product that most reminds you of a loved one, like hairspray, hand soap, or a type of seasoning from your kitchen can transport you back home anytime you take a whiff.
- Pack LOTS of Pictures
There is no such thing as bringing too many pictures. Throughout the summer, anytime you come across a cute pic in your camera roll, or take a new one, put it in a “college” album. Before you know it, you’ll easily have a hundred pictures of some of your favorite memories to print out and take with you to school. But make sure you have places to display all of these great pics! A couple of cork boards, small frames, and string lights to attach your pictures to are some simple ways to keep yourself surrounded by loved ones at all times.
- Don’t Be Afraid to Call
It’s hard to tell when you’re calling home too much, or not enough. The truth is, you can never call too often. Calling at least once every day helps keep you connected to your loved ones and updated on what’s going on at home. A fun way to keep conversations interesting is to call anytime something weird or funny happens to you. Generally, phone calls sprouting from something so random tend to be short and enjoyable for both people and helps keep you close. It may seem lame, but if you really don’t have time for phone calls every day, Snapchatting your family can really make a difference! Being able to show your mom or older brother a pic of one of your classes or you having out on the quad through snap really illustrates what your new life is like. Snapchat can have the same effect for you too! Seeing a picture of your brother’s smiling face may just be the thing that makes your day.
- DON’T Go Home
This may sound like the opposite of what to do when you’re feeling homesick, but don’t go home! Going home can actually have a very counterproductive effect. It makes returning to school much more difficult and emphasizes the vast differences between your home and your dorm, leaving you feeling more homesick than ever. Plus, once you go home for the first time one weekend early in the semester, it’s easier to fall into a pattern of staying home every weekend. This keeps you from bonding with your roommates, making new friends, and overall just becoming comfortable in your new housing. It may be difficult in the beginning to resist the urge to run back to the comfort of your own home, but it’s worth it to push through. Eventually, the ever unpleasant feeling of homesickness will fade away, and you’ll be left with great new friends!
Being homesick is normal and hopefully, these helped to make your transition a little easier!