Some of us might have to make a big decision in life that require a relocation. The reason can be marriage, study or work change.
Whatever the reason, this change of location can be an exciting prospect to look forward to.
But then, there’s a lot more in the package. It’s not only the excitement. The fact that the place is totally new to us and there’s hardly anybody we know, is something that can be worrying, daunting, and disheartening at the same time.
It takes a lot of courage and determination to pursue something that takes us away from our comfort zone. Especially, when we know that we will be left to our own devices once we moved away. And we’ll feel homesick from time to time.
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Top 15 tips to overcome your homesickness
The following are things that you can do to overcome your homesickness. You will learn to master them 😄. Because, even if you think you’re already settled in your new place and made it home for yourself, sometimes you will still find yourself missing your old-home, your old life. This can lead to homesickness again and again.
So, every now and then when you feel like going back to your homeland, you can go back to the list to try to overcome your homesickness
1. Let go of your emotion
When we feel homesick, we will feel sad. And our chest will be full of so much emotion. This emotion needs to be released. So, let it go.
You can put a brave face in front of others, but do find the time and a place for yourself to release your grief.
Cry hard if you can. Sob if you need to. Just let your emotions flow out. Don’t hold back. Take your time. Let it finish naturally. It will stop eventually. When you stop crying, you will feel your chest a bit lighter even if the sadness is still there.
2. Write down your mind
What the heck? I know I know. You think I must be crazy. But really, writing down what you feel inside your heart and mind, is actually good to release out your emotion. Also, to avoid negative thinking.
You can write at the same time you cry. I do. It’s like mapping out your emotions and hope at the same time.
I personally write what I feel at the time and what I hope in the future. Or sometimes, I write it as a letter to whom I feel strongly miss at the time. Although I mostly miss either my mom or my sister 😊. These letters never got to see either of them though, Because I don’t want them to feel worried and sad. So I keep all the letters. And when they become too many, I destroyed them 😃.
So yeah…. write down every emotion that you feel and thoughts that you have in mind.
3. Wash your face
This may sound trivial. But it does help. Trust me.
So, when you feel that you already cried hard enough and that all your sobbing ended. Get up and wash your face. Enjoy the cold or warm water…..whatever you prefer…let the water touch and wash your face. If you wish, you can even have a shower or a relaxing bath with a bit of a spa feel.
Basically, you want your skin to touch the water. Because water is the most natural calming property…… (this is my personal claim by the way 😉 )
4. Meditation and/or prayer
Prayer and meditation are good to calm yourself down. You can use whatever method of meditation. You can pray according to whatever belief/faith you have. Just focus your mind on the action.
Be mindful of your prayer. Be mindful of your meditation.
Listen to your body. Feel every part of it as you pray/meditate. Listen to your heartbeat as you say your prayer or meditate.
If you listen to relaxing music for your meditation, listen and feel every sound of it.
5. Physical activities
The next thing you want to do is drag yourself to do something physically active. You want physical exercise. So that your body will give you more Endorphins. The hormone that triggers a positive feeling.
This exercise doesn’t need to be a fancy one. You don’t really need to go to a gym for it. Though there is nothing wrong with it if you can.
You can even just do house works, for example: cleaning the house, hoovering, mopping the floor, etc. Or you can do the walking, jogging, aerobics (using Youtube…..hah!) …. anything. Just move your body. Be active. You can listen to music at the same time to pump up your mood. Just make sure you sweat after that….. 😄
6. Give yourself a treat
Everybody loves a treat, right? Especially when you just finished a hard work.
Yes, you’ve worked hard through previous steps, so now give yourself a treat. Buy something that you can enjoy. A small treat. It doesn’t have to be big and expensive. It can be as small as ice cream. But make sure it’s something you like and enjoy.
Because it’s pointless to treat yourself with a cup of cappuccino when you hate coffee and prefer a cup of tea anytime.
7. Surround yourself with people
When you feel homesick, force yourself to be around with people. Don’t isolate yourself alone for too long and too often.
You can simply go to public places like public libraries, shopping malls, cafes, restaurants, anywhere you can see and hear lots of people.
Perhaps, you can do this at the same time you want to treat yourself with a nice lunch of your homeland cuisine (if you can find a place that does it). Or, when you want to get yourself a nice cup of tea with a delish piece of cake. Your choice.
Just get yourself out there!
8. Go outdoor
One of the things you can do to get rid of your homesickness is going outdoor. Especially going somewhere you can see the beauty of our mother nature.
Anywhere you can see trees, blue sky or water. Anywhere you can hear the sound of chirping birds, trickling water or even sound of the wind.
If we pay attention to every detail in our surrounding nature, we can actually learn a lot about life (I’ll talk about this in another post), and we can get sort of peace of mind.
9. Call your loved ones
You may wonder why I put this as 9th on the list. Assuming you do all the things mentioned above, I’m confident you are now feeling a bit if not a lot better.
Naturally, you won’t get rid of your homesickness 100% by now, but I trust you will feel more positive and emotionally better. You’re kinda more in control of yourself.
So, go ahead. Call your loved ones. Call anyone whom you miss most and share all the things you’ve done so far from number 5 to 8. Tell them stories of your observation over your new place when you do number 5 to 8.
This way, you will send a positive feeling to your loved ones. They will be happy for you too. And they will wish well for you instead of worrying about you.
Do call your loved ones whenever you’re already in control of your emotions. Don’t call them when you’re desperate to cry and sob. You don’t want them to be worried about you. When they’re worried, they would lose the confidence of you being away from them. This my friend, won’t be good. So, be strong and positive.
10. Find and create an interest
Here, I could’ve simply written ‘find and create a hobby’ instead. But the thing is, when you just moved away (or have moved for a while or years) it may not be easy for you to continue your hobby…. or old hobby should I say.
My first passion ever was painting. I could paint for hours and hours. But, when I moved away I couldn’t do it, because I didn’t have my painting kit with me. And it can be expensive to buy and build a collection of painting kit. So I compromised. Instead of painting, I started drawing with oil pastels. Because a box of good quality oil pastel is relatively cheaper.
You can do a similar thing. Find something that amuses you yet keep your mind active. It may be something arty-crafty or sporty.
If you like swimming, then go find a local pool. If you like badminton, search for a local sports center and ask if they have a club you can join. Or if you like skiing and there is no skiing place and it’s the wrong season of the year, perhaps you can start an alternative hobby. Skateboard maybe? Or simply running? Anything that you think you will like it and it’s doable for you.
You can search high and low through the internet. Explore any possibilities of a new hobby. Then start and claim it. Surprise yourself with what you can do.
After more than 14 years away from my homeland, I found myself with tons of new hobbies and interests. Crocheting, sewing, cooking, baking, cake decorating, drawing, painting (I still do sometimes), making jewelry… and I think the list will probably go on still.
So, challenge yourself with a new passion. Make yourself proud!
11. Be social!
We all know that it takes time to make friends. But, we have to start somewhere to do it.
You may not feel up for it. But when you moved to a new place, you have to force yourself, even more, to get social. Meet people and make friends with them.
Perhaps you can start with a little circle of your new family, if the reason for your relocation is relationship i.e. marriage, etc. Or you can open yourself to the possibility of being friends with your work colleague or student fellows if your relocation is due to work or study.
The other option is perhaps you can join a local gym, social club, sports club, community centers, etc. Basically you want to be more welcoming and sending positive signals to people around your new places.
It may be hard initially. And you may not be able to make friends at all for some time. But at least, this mingling process will teach you more about social interaction and how to deal with people. So nothing gets wasted 😊.
12. Engage with your new place
One of the big reasons we feel homesick is that we keep comparing our old-home with our new place. We see the new place from the perspective of our old home.
When we compare the two, we may find difficult to accept the new place as it is. That’s why we have to stop comparing the two places and accept that the new place is totally different from our old home.
We can do this as we gradually get familiar with the place. Go around for sightseeing. Learn a bit about the place. Explore the place.
13. Be positively busy
The last thing you want when you’re alone is having ample time without anything positive or constructive to do.
Similarly, when you’re feeling homesick, you want to avoid being idle too much. It’s ok to have a bit of free time but make sure it doesn’t leave you clueless of what to do.
Find something that interests you and keep yourself busy with it. But make sure it’s something positive. Something that won’t make you regret after you’re done with it.
The easy examples of being positively busy are cooking, sporting, crafting, reading, writing, or even helping your neighbor or friend with a DIY job. Anything that can make you feel positive.
14. Cook your favorite homeland food
This is my favorite thing to do to overcome my being homesick 😊.
It may take extra effort to cook. And you may not like cooking. But, if you see the whole process of cooking in entirety, from browsing the recipes online….(nowadays you can learn how to cook literally anything from the internet) ….to shopping the ingredients. From prepping and cooking the food to eating it…..it’s quite a long way…..but you will feel satisfied and proud of yourself at the end of the process.
This cooking session can be a good reason for you to mingle with your new prospective friends too. You can invite them over and cook for them. Or ask them to teach cooking local food and enjoy it together.
So, you will be positively busy and be social at the same time. Killing two birds with one stone 😄.
Plus, you will have more things to share with your loved ones back at home….next time you call them.
15. Talk to yourself
Please don’t do it out loud in public places so that people around you can hear you 😆.
What I mean by talking to yourself is basically telling your mind and reminding yourself about what’s important for you. Also about the reason why you moved away in the first place. And you do this talking in your head. In your mind and heart.
You can talk to yourself as having a shower. Or during your breakfast. While you’re waiting for the bus. Or when you’re in the queue for your lunch. Anywhere, anytime. Just keep talking to yourself.
Tell yourself both sides of the story. The positive and negative points of you being in the new place. And tell yourself about where you want to be in the future. Explain how important for you to be able to overcome your homesickness by being strong and by getting on to this new place
Conclusion on what you can do to overcome your homesickness
Feeling homesick is not nice. But just like anything that related to feeling and emotion, you can train yourself to cope well with homesickness.
Let’s wrap up the easy things that you can try to overcome you’re being homesick.
- Let go of your emotion
- Write down your mind
- Wash your face
- Prayer and/or meditation
- Physical activities
- Give yourself a treat
- Surround yourself with people
- Go outdoor
- Call your loved ones
- Find and create your interest
- Be social
- Engage with your new place
- Be positively busy
- Cook your favorite homeland food
- Talk to yourself
Whenever you feel homesick, tell yourself that you’re stronger than you think you are. That you can do anything to overcome your homesickness. Although you admit that you’re feeling sad. Embrace the feeling, but let it go by training yourself to be more positive.
Thank you for taking the time to read. Let me know how you think of the tips above and whether they’re useful for you or not. You can leave in the comments for more ideas to share as well.
If you find the post can be helpful for others, please feel free to share it with them.
All the best!