I know that for many international students, deciding which country to study in is difficult because of emotional and family factors. Some choose to study abroad in countries closer to them so that they can return to visit their family, and vice versa. Some choose more vibrant countries, where there are many communities of their people who speak in their mother tongue. And also, many of you were very hesitant when choosing Finland as a destination because of rumors such as boredom, depression, unfriendly locals, and a small population. But not so, in my opinion. When you choose to study abroad, you are responsible for more than yourself. As a result, I choose to find joy in the most insignificant things.
Nearly 94%of students have reported feeling homesick at some point. (National library of medicine)
Stay in touch with family and friends
I come from Vietnam, so the time zone difference is quite a lot, about 5 hours. However, I always try to arrange to call my parents and grandparents every weekend. The first is to update my life situation. The second is to make sure they stay healthy and happy. My father used to joke that he didn’t remember me. But every time I talk to my mother, I realize that my father goes to work and always waits until the weekend to receive a call from me.
As for friends, it seems simpler, we are young and we often spend more time with friends. Honestly, it’s because we’re young and no one goes to bed earlier than midnight. Therefore, the possibility that I can contact you is higher, every evening when I have finished studying.
Cook your own traditional dishes at home
In order not to experience the feeling of “craving for home rice,” check out how to cook Vietnamese dishes online or rely on regular conversations with your parents for tips or recipes, then cook for yourself any food you like. This is also an activity that helps you to improve yourself to be independent in life.
Although I live in Finland, I also celebrate the Vietnamese traditional Lunar New Year. Not very lavish, but mainly to spend time with the people I love, Vietnamese friends who have shared many sad and happy stories with me since I came here. Although we were preparing for exams, some were giving presentations, some were a bit further away, we still gathered to do this New Year’s party. Since we are neither in the capital nor in a big city, these moments with the Vietnamese community are precious to us.
Explore, experience, and learn about culture
You already have a lot of benefits when holding a Finnish residence card. Indeed, you can freely move to EU countries to travel, gain knowledge, and accumulate cultural beauties.
Moreover, even in Finland, there are many things for you to experience in this land of thousands of lakes. For example, going to a sauna, picking mushrooms in the forest, skiing, going to museums, and looking for the Northern Lights—even though I’ve been here for half a year, I still haven’t experienced all the above.
Play a sport or pursue a passion
As a student, there will be many clubs on campus or activities coming from the student union. Take advantage of that opportunity to exchange culture and knowledge. Playing a sport or following a passion can help you forget about homesickness without realizing it. For those who don’t like to go out, there are other ways to stay at home, such as cooking, yoga, meditation, or even pursuing an online course.
For me, I am participating in a project from a local non-profit organization. Their activities are basically to increase people’s awareness of sustainable values through activities such as picking up trash, visiting nature, hiking, sharing vegetarian recipes, or simply sitting back and chit chatting by the fire.
In short, the time span as a student, especially studying abroad, will pass very quickly. To this day, I still can’t believe I’ve been here for almost half a year. During that time, all your actions and deeds carry their own meaning. So cherish every moment in life. so that when we look back later, we will not have to regret anything. Follow Edunation on our website and other media, such as our Facebook Page or Youtube.