A year abroad can be an adventure to remember, a test of your abilities to cope on your own and, as everybody says, simply the best time of your life. But it has to end at some point. That moment has come for me. Back to my “normal” university and studying routine. As much as I love Scotland and my Glasgow uni, coming to terms with the fact that a year of living by the beach in Spain is over is simply hard. For me it cost quite a long break from blogging. Have you noticed? No? Moving on…
Thinking back about my time in Spain, it has been one of the best year of my life. But now, because I am back I have compiled a little list of things I think can help you avoid the post-study abroad blues.
1 . Take some time to transition
I have not been here for a while. I’ve taken a break from blogging and a break from social media cause I felt I needed time to relax. And I decided it was ok. If you’ve spent a lot of time abroad, away from family and friends at home, it will take time to get your head back to your normal life. It will probably also cause a little reverse culture shock.
Lifehack compiled a list of 6 stages you go through after returning from study abroad.
2 . Organize yourself
If you, like me, had a break from studying, you have to prepare for what’s coming at university. I haven’t had exams or essays to write during my time abroad. Many times, even if you go abroad to study, there is less focus on studying and more on enjoying your time in the foreign country. Spend some time getting back to the real uni mindset if you feel like you need to. It will help you when the assignments and exams start and if you have to combine studying and working.
3 . Cherish your memories
If you’ve had a wonderful time during your exchange you must have taken some pictures, right? Print them out, put them on the wall of your dorm or make an album. You can even just scroll through your Instagram account if that’s where you put them. Reliving our happy memories is an awesome way to prolong our adventure a bit more. When nostalgia hits, you can follow the advice of StudyAbroad.com and always have something to look at to remind you of the great time abroad.
4 . Take advantage of the experience
Whatever you’ve done during your year abroad, you must have learned a lot about living in that particular country, the people who live there, etc. Maybe you learned the language? You can use it to write an article for the campus newspaper, write a blog or mention it in your CV. Employers value such experiences as it shows you’re a more mature and independent person.
5 . Travel
Last, but not least, you can always go back and visit! If you’ve made friends with locals, you will probably have a place to stay and it’s a wonderful experience to go back to a place you once called home.
Your time abroad might have been the most adventurous and exciting thing, but coming back home doesn’t have to be the end of that exciting time. Maybe you’ve gained a new perspective on your own country? Have you had a reverse culture shock when coming back? Let me know in the comments!