Whether you just started college or transferred to CU Boulder from another university, adjusting to a new town and campus can be challenging. Here are a few tips to help you overcome homesickness this semester.
1. Homesickness is normal and temporary
While it may not always be obvious, many students feel homesick when they start college or transfer to a new school. Remember that it’s normal to experience homesickness when we get separated from the people, places and things that have given us a sense of belonging.
It’s also important to keep in mind that homesickness is temporary. Chances are that feelings of loneliness or homesickness will lessen as you get more familiar with campus life and the people at CU.
2. Stay in touch
While you navigate life on campus and meet new people, it’s important to keep in touch with your friends and family back home. Even if your friends are attending different colleges or living in different cities, checking in and catching up can help you feel more connected. If you’re struggling, reach out to someone you trust and talk through it. Staying in contact with people we love can help us feel like we’re not alone, and it can remind us that we have people we can rely on in tough times.
3. Establish a routine
Adapting to a new campus and class schedule may require us to change up our normal routines. In fact, creating routines can help ease anxiety and uncertainty because we have more predictability in our day-to-day lives.
Don’t worry, you don’t need to create a minute-by-minute schedule—a rough plan will do. For instance, consider taking the same route to and from your classes, schedule time for physical movement, plan out your meals (on and off campus) and make time for regular social activities. Creating a routine, no matter how small it may be, can help you feel more in control of your day.
4. Put yourself out there (even if it’s hard)
Stepping outside of your comfort zone can be challenging, especially if you’re introverted or don’t know anyone yet. Try to ease into it by starting small. For instance, it may be easier to get to know your roommates, neighbors or classmates first. Make plans to hang out in small groups, study together or spend time having fun.
You can also get involved and meet new people by:
Try experimenting with different activities and groups to find what feels like the best fit for you. It’s also important to keep in mind that many people may be struggling right now. Being inviting and inclusive can go a long way. If it looks like someone is uncomfortable in a group, help to break the ice by getting to know them and introducing them to others.
5. Get connected with resources
If you’re feeling overwhelmed or struggling, you’re not alone. There are plenty of resources on campus that can help.
If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis or needs urgent, same-day support, please call Counseling and Psychiatric Services (CAPS) at 303-492-2277. You can also visit the Emergency & Crisis Care page for additional resources and support.