Our Tips/Tricks to Getting Through Homesickness

Carly Harward Student Life Officer


January 23, 2020

Though exciting, study abroad can also be a difficult adjustment to living in a new city, navigating through a new culture, and missing friends/family back home. Whether it's missing hanging out at your favorite spot, longing for your favorite homemade dish, or wishing that you were back at your home school for the big game - homesickness can impact everyone and manifest in a variety of ways. All of our staff here at Arcadia Ireland have experience in living/travelling abroad. They've given their top tips/words of wisdom for how to navigate through the feelings of homesickness when it arises! 

Find Another American and talk about home

The Arcadia Ireland community is a great place to reach out to American students living in Ireland that are likely going through some of the same processes that you may encounter! 

Create structure when there is none

One thing many students express upon arrival is their concern for having free-time again (something many students may not have had since the first few weeks of freshman year). Join clubs and societies at your Irish university that interests you – this is a great way to bring a bit of your home routine into your study abroad experience and will also be a great way to meet local students!

Schedule Homesickness Time

Sometimes it can be helpful to schedule a time to miss all things from home! This might mean blocking off an hour that day between 5-6pm where you can feel nothing but homesickness! 

Plan Something Nice to Look Forward to

You are still working out your schedule and it all seems a little chaotic right now. Something you can do is think about the places of things you would like to do or see. Then be specific and put the date on the calendar. The thoughts of anticipation can often lift the mood and take you out of the darkness of homesickness.

Go for a walk

Get outside for a 30-minute walk. It will boost endorphins, lift your mood, and give you perspective. Go for some fresh air and take the time to explore and experience your new home while giving you the time to process through these feelings.

Talk to others about how you’re feeling

Sometimes with homesickness it helps to talk it out and feel supported by those around you. Talking through your feelings/experience with those currently around you as opposed to those at home (because they are sad and missing you too) can sometimes help you feel more encouraged and supported. Connect with those that are had to have you near them now. 

Studying abroad can be an adjustment for everyone so give yourself time to become comfortable and familiar with your new surroundings. Homesickness may arise when you least expect it, so give it time and give yourself what you need in that moment! Even though Ireland is an English speaking country and there are many similarities to the US, it is still a different experience and far from home. Homesickness can happen anywhere.