Dear Worldwide travelers! I hope you are all well wherever in the world you may be. I am writing to you from a personal perspective in this blog and hope I can be helpful with some tips and things to think about while you are far away from home on your internship.
The first time you leave your home and your family and friends you will, of course, encounter many new emotions and hardships. This is normal and there is nothing to worry about, all of your family and friends will always be there for you no matter what. It is only natural that after so many years living in a place you call home and with the proximity of your loved ones it will be a shock once you step out of this comfort zone and start a new path- something totally different from that you are used to. You will feel homesick and sad at times, you will miss not only the people but your daily routines, knowing exactly how to get around, the food, traditions, culture, things to do on the weekend etc. But look on the bright side! You will only be on your internship temporarily so don’t sit around and moan about the struggles of being there, instead make it as homey as possible with everything around you. Sometimes I find it may help to stay away from social media- don’t be tempted to check what your friends and family are doing back home, instead create your own new memories and soak up as much as you can about the place you have just arrived!
Thinking positive and meeting new people that can help distract your mind are great ways of not feeling homesick. Sign up for a dance class or take on a new hobby, go out for a jog, to the movies, museums, take a tour ride, go shopping or just explore a new café that may just be around the corner of your block! Pretend that you are actually moving there permanently and trick your mind into thinking that you MUST find ways to make it fun to be living there. Embrace the nature and other surroundings and remember it all by taking pictures and making a scrapbook to share with friends and family when you arrive back home. They will be thrilled to see and hear about all of your tripsadventures, I am sure!
Some remedies I can tip about are:
Keep in touch with loved ones from home but don’t obsess about texting or talking to them all the time ! You wil not actually be living the things in your new environment !!
Write a log book/diary/jot down notes in your agenda on what you do each day ( it may help you appreciate all the things you do and/or learn there)
Skype with family and friends on your day off, you will have more things to talk about when more days without speaking are accumulated since on a day to day basis many things may not change. Learn to be on your own and not dependant of your parents too much, remember this is your time to shine on your own!
Reading is a great way to get your mind off things if you are having a rough or boring day.
Take the initiative to gather up a group of co workers to go out for lunch or to the mal ; get to know each other and you will learn more about what there is to do around the neighbourhood and make new friends!
Living on your own makes you truly more independent, it helps you learn about yourself, about what you like and what you don´t and makes you try a little bit harder to achieve what you want. It’s kind of a test for survival- all the things you had done for you before now you have to figure out how to do them on your own (cook, clean, laundry, pay the rent, follow a schedule, be responsible for a job, figure out transportation etc.). I assure you though that by the end of your internship you will feel more than satisfied and proud of yourself- it is not easy to be on your own at first, but after a while you will begin to see that you are never really alone !
Gabriella Dominguez, support coordinator in Worldwide Internships