How to Deal with Homesickness at College

You're away at school and miss home. It's natural, but can be overcome.


Up next in College Freshman Survival Guide (13 videos)

Hey, frosh: Check out the tips and advice in these videos.

You Will Need

  • Patience
  • And persistence


  1. Step 1

    Realize things are different

    Understand that things will be different, and so you shouldn't try to make it home. It's a different time and place, but that's a good thing.

  2. Step 2

    Bring mementos

    Bring a piece of home. Something small will help remind you of home without being solely focused on it.

  3. Step 3

    Think positive

    Focus on what you're gaining. College is a fun and interesting time in someone's life. Focus on the fact that you're getting an education, meeting new people, and experiencing new things.

  4. Step 4

    Know you're not alone

    Know that you're not alone. Most freshmen are in the same boat as you. Talk to classmates and ask how they are dealing with it.

  5. Step 5

    Keep in touch

    Keep in touch. Send emails to old friends—who, incidentally, may be feeling the same thing—at their new school, too. Call friends and relatives.

  6. Step 6

    Get involved

    Get involved. Join a club, campus radio station, yearbook staff, frat, or sorority. Volunteer or run for office. This will help you focus on the present.

  7. Step 7

    Plan a visit

    Plan a visit. Have a friend visit you or go home for a long weekend. You may just miss college life.

  8. Think carefully about whether or not to go home at weekends. Some students find it helps to ease the transition; others find the constant readjustment makes them feel worse.

  9. Step 8

    Keep a journal

    Keep a journal. Write down what you're feeling. When you look back in a year or two, you'll see how far you've come.

  10. Step 9

    Talk with friends

    Talk about your feelings with your roommate or friends.

  11. Step 10

    Visit new places

    Go to new places you don't normally visit on campus so you can see and meet new people. Swing by the photo lab, chemistry hall, new coffeeshop, and so on.

  12. Psychologists suggest spending time away from home as a way to build up tolerance to homesickness.