"Homesickness is... absolutely nothing. Fifty percent of the people in the world are homesick all the time. You don't really long for another country. You long for something in yourself that you don't have, or haven't been able to find."- John Cheever
That's right, you are not the only one feeling homesick. Although, we adults don't express much about how terribly we miss home and family when we are away, all of us know the feeling of sadness and depression within. Homesickness in people occur when they need to move out from home due to work or higher studies, which is done by the majority of people in the world. It's a mixture of emotions, where on one hand you are happy to move towards a better career growth, and on the other hand, you are sad about staying away from your loved ones. A perfect example to the saying, "To win some, you need to lose some!" Isn't it? It's human to resist change, it affects us both physically and mentally. How? Below are some signs that show the degree of emotional and physical impact of being away from home.
Signs of Homesickness in Adults
It's so ironic that we tend to resist change in spite of knowing the fact that things never remain the same! We want to grow, see the world, but all this without being homesick, which is practically impossible! The main reason for homesickness, is the time and difficulty which we face to adapt to the new and changed environment! At least children can cry out and express how they feel, but we adults just sulk.
The following points will give you an overview of the signs of homesickness when we are away from home.
- Feeling sad, lonely, depressed and helpless.
- Uninterested exploring the new place.
- Loss of appetite.
- Falling sick, like a sudden fever, headache, and lack of enthusiasm.
- A strong feeling saying that you don't belong here. Wanting to leave everything and go back.
- Not being able to enjoy fully.
- Constantly missing home and crying remembering them.
- Lack of concentration at work/studies
- Not being able to get comfortable and be a part of your new life.
Being adult is another way of saying we cannot run away from our responsibilities. But the good news is that, if you give yourself a little time, homesickness is just a temporary phase. No other species hate change more than humans, and no other species can adapt to change better than humans! Therefore, coping with changes is something which comes naturally to us. Since family and home is a synonym to emotions, it just takes a little more time and effort in coping with homesickness.
Dealing With Homesickness
Overcoming homesickness can be a bit of a challenge at first. One really has to push himself towards coming out of the depressive state of mind and body. Take the following steps toward preventing and treating homesickness.
- Be Positive: Being positive towards new change is the first step to come out of homesickness. We always wear a mask so that others don't know about the jumbled up negative and confused thoughts within us. If you really want to adapt to the change, you need to REALLY look at the positive aspects of things. For example, If you are away from your wife and kids due to work, instead of focusing on the fact that your family is not with you, focus on the fact that you are away from them today to give them a better tomorrow.
- Explore Your Surroundings: Another important step you need to take is to step out of your "homesick zone" and explore your surroundings. Go for walks in the evening. Check out the specialties of the new place. Know more to tell your family about. Who knows you might come across something that your family would love to know, or may be visit when they come over to meet you. :)
- Take Initiative to Communicate: Communication is the bridge to all gaps. Since you are new to the place, don't expect people to give you special attention. It's you who is trying to adjust and be a part of the new environment. So make new friends and talk to them. Who knows you might end up meeting someone who is missing his/her family too! Sharing your feelings and exchanging your thoughts would definitely make you feel better!
- Bring Newness to Your Words: By saying this I mean, that instead of telling your family how much you miss them, and your friends, and your dog, and your locality..., try telling your family about your new friends, about what did you explore, places that you will take your family to when they come over. This will act as a cure for both you and your family, as they are missing you as much as you are. But telling them that you are getting adaptive, will make both you and them feel better.
- Take Care of Yourself. If You Don't, Who Else Will?: This statement might get you a little sentimental, but you have to accept the fact that your family is not there to take care of you anymore. Imagine how bad they would feel if they found out how you are treating yourself? Or how would you feel if you knew that your mom has stopped eating properly ever since you have gone? So eat properly, involve yourself in activities that would divert your mind and help you become a part of the new environment.
I hope the above points have helped you on how to deal with the terrible feeling of homesickness. These are all well-known and recommended steps that everyone knows within themselves, but are too deeply engrossed in missing family, that these steps are left unheard and undone. To conclude, I just want to add this quote:
"Back home, people are really, really friendly. We grew up playing the same games and doing the same things. It's different here because we don't have the same connection. We're homesick most of the time, but we know we are here for a purpose and you try and make your dream happen." - Alfred Aboya
All you should remember is that homesickness in adults is a temporary phase, give yourself time to let the saddening time pass by. Every morning will get a new sunrise. Take care.