How To Feel At Home When You’re Not At Home

Traveling abroad is one of the greatest opportunities that we have during our lifetime. But let’s face it, sometimes all we want to do is curl up in our bed back at home and surround ourselves with sweet sweet familiarity.

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It’s ok to feel this way, trust me, we’ve all been there. And it’s nothing that we should be ashamed of.  Yes, we’re in a new place and we’ve been afforded this incredible chance to see the world, but it’s not a crime to wish you were home, sitting at your favorite spot with your favorite people.

Unfortunately, when you’re several thousand miles from your hometown and your own bed, there isn’t an easy way to get back home before your flight. But there are always things you can do while abroad to keep in touch with your roots.

Photos

When I studied abroad, looking at the photos I brought of my friends and family helped remind me that while I may be feeling lost, there are always people back home that will have my back. Plus, photos can be a great conversation starter with your fellow travelers. Most likely, they’ll have some photos of their own to show you!

Mementos

I don’t care if yours is your grandmother’s locket, your baby blanket or a beanie baby that you’ve kept around since the early 90s—everyone has one.  If it’s a locket, wear it with you throughout your trip. If it’s a stuffed animal, stuff the little guy into your suitcase. Trust me, you’ll make it fit. Sometimes just knowing that you have these things with you is enough to remind you that even though you’re far from home, you’re never really alone.

Technology

Unless you’ve decided to completely unplug, there’s always some way to get in touch with your loved ones. Take advantage of modern technology and jump on a Skype call. Write a lengthy email and vent to your one friend who always happens to be on the same emotional wavelength as you.  Just the act of writing or seeing someone’s face can be enough to refuel your inner-adventurer and get you ready for the rest of your trip.

Bring home to you!

One of the great things about traveling is the people that you meet. Everyone gets together, swaps stories, shares a few beers and an instant bond forms. Take some time to introduce these people to your life back home. If you guys will be together for a while, find a way to cook one of your favorite meals from back home. Share with them your love for your favorite sports team or discuss your favorite movie, heck, watch it if it’s available. Showing other travelers who you are creates a bond between the two of you that can extend far beyond your current adventures. Remember: even if you feel alone while out on the road, you’re not the only one that’s away from home.

Alexandra Cooper

Allie never says NO to an adventure. She packs more shoes than pants, while she can't travel without her stuffed animal: Monkey. Her favorite country is Italy.

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