Coping with Homesickness

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While deciding to work abroad is almost immediate, moving away from your family takes time to get used to. We have heard a lot of stories of people who have worked in a foreign country. It is only but natural to struggle with homesickness in the beginning. It is an expected process that a person has to go through after separation from loved ones. However, it must be overcome at some point.

“Homesickness symptoms may vary from person to person, but in general, homesickness can leave you feeling upset, distressed, isolated, or lonely.”

This kind of feeling, if not dealt sooner, may lead to depression. Thankfully, there are ways to cope with this conflict. Here are some of the ways that can help you adjust to your new environment, and somehow enjoy a bit while enduring it:


1. Find Your Tribe.

While working in Saudi Arabia, a Polish Doctor came to work for our university. I observed how she had slowly but progressively adjusted to her surroundings. She left her family in Poland and stayed in an accommodation only for women. After a couple of months, I invited her over for a picnic. Surprisingly, she turned me down and told me she’s going on a trip with her new friends whom she had met at the gym.

Meeting people in a new place is not easy for everyone. Sometimes it is intimidating but it’s not so bad. Start new relationships with people whom you are naturally drawn to. Having friends will make a foreign place homier. It may also make you busy now that you can set activities with some people who enjoy the same things as you do.


2. Explore.

This is the perfect time to plan trips to the place you are staying. If you are working in another country, it will be an adventure to explore its tourist spots and even try their native dishes.

With all the time that you have, you will be able to enjoy every detail of your trip!


3. Hone Your (Other) Skills.

What was that one skill again that you always hoped to make better? Do you like to paint, play guitar, or sew? Instead of moping around when not working, bring your skill to the next level and see how productive you can get. If you do not have any, find a hobby that will bring out your creativity, or simply, relieve your stress. Who knows this may be a new line of career waiting to be charged up?


4. Excel at Your Job.

With less pressure of schedules to keep up with relationships, you are now more focused on achieving better outputs at work. The extra time and energy you have may now be used to develop your ability and establish your career growth.  You may take extra courses anytime, or attend conferences without worrying that some important event may come up.  If there’s one advantage of living alone, that it is owning all your time –  make it beneficial for you and your family by excelling at your job.



Reading Recommendations:

How to Deal When You Live Far Away From Friends and Family


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