The Feeling of Homesickness: Motivation or Distraction

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One Sunday morning, I was thrilled to be informed by my sister that I passed the exams and will be studying in manila. Although it meant being away from the family, I was excited. I never thought that being away from home would eventually take a toll on me affect my day to day life living in manila. I had a hard time adjusting to the change, missing the familiar environment, and faces. Not noticing how this gradually affects my academic performance, I was shocked to see the results of my grades. That was when I realized that this constant feeling of sadness and loneliness caused by Homesickness affects a student’s academic performance at school.

What is Home? When researched for its definition home is defined as a place of residence, the social unit formed by a family living together or a familiar or usual setting. Homesickness is a feeling of stress or anxiety caused by separation from home (Mason, 2019). It can be likened as a transition between two worlds, adjusting to the change of situation and environment. Anxiety and Depression can also cause or worsen homesickness. Although homesickness is not considered as a clinical condition, it can affect one’s mental state.

Furthermore, homesickness has both positive and negative effects. Although it is common, homesickness can be associated with hard to deal with emotions and experiences (Bologna, 2018). Homesickness is a feeling of being sad and incomplete. It can lead to more serious mental health issues such as Depression (Mason, 2019). Homesickness disrupts one’s focus, preoccupied with concerns such as ‘how is the family?’ ‘Are they safe?’ ‘When will I see them again?’

However, the question: ‘Why do people choose to go study abroad even though they will be distant from home?’ comes in mind. That is because living overseas can build character and independence (Quiao, 2005). Being in a different environment can help you grow as an individual, experiencing new things from day-to-day. It’s normal to miss the familiar surroundings, and struggle to adapt to new ones, feeling homesick is not a weakness. The most reliable way to overcome homesickness is to immerse oneself in their new environment (Mason, 2019). One of the hardest things about homesickness is the feeling of leaving loved ones, and not being able to spend time with them as often as before but with the help of today’s technology, it is much easier to communicate and connect with family and friends.

Therefore, homesickness has both positive and negative effects on the academic performance of the student. Negatively, because it can affect the mental state of the student and focus on school works and other academic-related activities. On the other hand, affect positively in a way that one may perceive it as a motivation to strive harder and remember the true reason as to why they chose to be distant from home. One should learn how to balance and adjust to these changes to be able to overcome everyday challenges and to grow independently.

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