You’re Not in Kansas Anymore: 3 Tips on How to Stay Motivated in School When Far from Home

Originally written on October 20th, 2017.


“Home, yes I am home, home is wherever I’m with you…”
Being far away from home whether 2 hours or 20 hours away for a while can be painful and sometimes make you want to give it all up and run back to your families’ loving arms (I know the feeling all too well, trust me). The transition from home to college life can be very robust and can lead to significantly low grades, losing the will to go to class, becoming discouraged, and an increase in stress. When September came around, I would cry EVERY TIME I heard from my parents. Not only that, but I’m from NYC so coming from a place where the streets don’t sleep and waking up to salsa music to complete silence and snowfall that occurs before Thanksgiving had taken a SERIOUS toll on my schoolwork, as well as my mental health. Here are some tips (that I still use to this day) to stay motivated while far away from home.

Tip#1: Video Chatting!
Let me tell ya, ever since I brought myself an IPhone this summer I couldn’t be happier being able to see my parents and boyfriend with such clarity. Whether you have an IPhone or not, the technology we have available to us today can connect people from overseas. Sometimes all our hearts yearn for is to see the face of our loved ones; to see them smile, laugh, occasionally scold you, and wave hi. If you’d like to try, you can even study with them too! You and your loved ones can download a video-chatting service and talk till the sun comes up. (A phone call works too though.)

Tip#2: Countdown Those Days Sweetie!
Universities aren’t going to keep you all year (at least I hope not.) You are permitted to go back home when the holidays come around, so find yourself a dry erase board or even a calendar and write down how many days until you get to see the gang! (Believe me when I say that when you see 90 days rather than 3 months, your heart will thank you.)

Tip#3: Find some thing interesting to do.
When your mind is running on back home, consider joining some clubs or sport teams to take your mind off of the heart ache. I wouldn’t advise pursuing other people though; sometimes you just come across people who don’t have similar goals as you or even can be toxic. Make sure you pursue interests, not people. When you find things you love to do, the right people will show up.

Don’t give up on you! Remember, you also are not restricted from going home either. If you can come up with the money, save up so you can buy a bus or airplane ticket back to the place you know and the people you love; but also do not forget that your people are rooting for you. Even if they may not be, I am rooting for you. Change and improvement happens when you step out of your comfort zone. Continue to think positive and have a great day and/or night!



Author: Leylany Martinez

A beautiful mind powered by the strength of community and "The Office", with my cat in my lap. Pleased to meet you.

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