LSE - Small Logo
LSE - Small Logo

Hanseul

June 16th, 2023

How to stay strong in the midst of homesickness

0 comments

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

Hanseul

June 16th, 2023

How to stay strong in the midst of homesickness

0 comments

Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

Homesickness is an unpleasant, yet natural phenomenon that every international student (including myself) goes through at some point of their move-in phase to London. It’s not to discourage you, everyone goes through it. Rather, I’m here to share some key tips on how to stay strong in the midst of loneliness and homesickness so you can feel like London is your second home from the moment you settle in.

  • Do not stay alone in your room during Welcome week

If you’re planning to stay at one of the LSE halls, your move-in day will be in mid-September. Of course, if you’re staying in an intercollegiate hall or opt to live off-campus, you may move in earlier than this. Regardless of where you’ll be staying, you’ll have a full week without any lectures or classes. This is called Welcome. Because this is (probably) the only time of the year where you don’t have to worry about your academic workload or assessments, I’d strongly recommend you to use this time to make friends, get used to the LSE campus, or even tour London. Try to avoid staying alone in your room all day. Trust me, regardless of whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, you’ll feel lonely once you realise that you’re in a brand-new environment, away from your cosy home and family. By utilising Freshers Week as an opportunity to explore London and the school, you’ll find something that interests you. I personally advise you to visit the LSESU Freshers Fair – it’s a fantastic opportunity to meet people from over hundreds of societies, and you may want to join something that intrigues you other than your studies. Your hall may hold Welcome events to simply introduce you to other hall residents. Of course, you’re not obliged to join in. But it’s never a bad idea to attend these events, at least once, to familiarise yourself with the hall facilities and people who you may encounter throughout the year.

  • Have something that will remind you of home

To be honest, homesickness is not something that just disappears once the first few weeks of Autumn Term (AT) are finished. It’s not a one-time experience. In fact, homesickness might return at the very end of AT or even during winter and spring breaks (if you decide to stay in London during that time). So why not grab something that reminds you of home? It could be anything – food, your favourite item(s) from home, video calls with your family, music, films or TV shows. Or, if you’re a more social person, maybe consider joining your LSESU national society and relax with people who also speak the same language as you. 

  • Intentionally make yourself committed to something

This is the tip that worked for me. I joined the LSESU United Nations society at the beginning of the academic year to attend Model United Nations (MUN) conferences. My Thursday afternoons, until now, are dominated by MUN. I can’t talk about my first-year without referring to MUN (I even had a week-long trip to Paris in March 2023 with my fellow TeamLSE people for an international conference!). Although staying on top of my academic coursework while preparing for MUN conferences at the same time was not an easy job, I became so busy, day-to-day, that I simply didn’t have time to feel homesick during the term. I’m not saying that the MUN is the only answer to cure homesickness, but maybe go find something that will boost your social life and keep you engaged.

Yes, moving to a new city is such a huge life changing decision, it may overwhelm you in the beginning. But don’t let anxiety take over your life. You’re at a starting point where the world is your oyster, and you can try out anything you want. Once you take time to explore the new environment you’re in, you’ll feel less and less anxious as time goes by. And please never forget this – you’re not alone.

About the author

Hanseul

Hello, I'm Hanseul from South Korea! I'm currently a first-year undergraduate studying International Relations and History. Apart from my academics, I enjoy writing about my daily life as an international student in London, listening to Kpop and reading.

Posted In: Student life

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Bad Behavior has blocked 931 access attempts in the last 7 days.