6 Ways to Make Your House Abroad Feel Like ‘Home’

I find that one of the biggest root causes of ‘homesickness’ is that you become overwhelmed with the sense of unfamiliarity around you – Especially in your new house abroad.

Suddenly, your surroundings have changed so dramatically that you feel out of place wherever you go. This can then lead to those awful pangs of loneliness or isolation as you crave everyday items, people and places that you find comfort in and know what to expect from.
Not having even the smallest of these ‘comforts’ available to you in your new house abroad is only going to increase your struggle to adjust. It is therefore so important to try and build a sense of ‘home’ in your new surroundings for you to take solace in.

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As soon as I officially moved into my new home in Canada, I made a conscious effort to feature small pieces of my native country around me. It surprised me how much these small additions soothed me whenever homesickness started to take its toll. I took power from them and felt like I missed my home country just that little bit less, as my current space was able to provide me with the reassurance that I needed.

Looking to improve your new house abroad to reflect your native roots and decrease homesickness? Look no further than these surprisingly simple Top 6 Tips…

1.  Décor

It may seem superficial but the power of aesthetics in your living space should never be underestimated! The simple act of hanging a classic London ‘Red Telephone Box’ canvas print in my bedroom has given me endless moments where I wake up and smile at it with pride. Pick a print from your native country (a famous landmark, animal or landscape) and display it proudly!

If that’s not your thing, research some inspirational quotes and place them around your home to give you a much-needed boost when you’re feeling down, or choose a popular design, colour scheme or flag from your native country to feature on throw-pillows, blankets or bed sheets. You don’t need to go crazy with it, just a small splash of ‘home’ can make such a difference.

You can even spend some time getting creative! There are tons of DIY craft blogs out there to help you create some unique home décor to suit your tastes – and you’ll feel accomplished knowing that you made it yourself and that it truly reflects who you are!

2.  Food

What better way to feel at home than to have your favourite snacks or meals available in your kitchen cabinets?

Load up on your native staples whenever you visit back home or, even better, find a local store near you that offers the food you crave! The number of times I have felt a pang of sadness missing home and treated it with a big fat Galaxy chocolate bar…
Buy yourself a recipe book or ask your Mum for her secrets and have some easy-to-make meals on hand for when you crave the taste of your native country. Food has the power to take you right back there!

3.  ‘You’ Zone

Lisa at Lisa Designs Life says that “Our living environment subtly, yet constantly influences our mood and psyche with colours, shapes, textures and indoor climate. Therefore, feeling like you are a stranger in your own home is a recipe for stress and depression.”

After moving to a new country, it is very important to create a living space for YOU. Somewhere for you to go to whenever you need to be alone, to spend time doing activities that you enjoy and to reflect on your journey abroad.

Invest in a comfortable chair and bookcase to read your favourite books, set up a peaceful yoga spot in your apartment or organise an office area in your bedroom full of inspiration and mood boards. Anywhere that ignites happiness and calm inside you is a winner!

Read Lisa’s ideas (as well as a free self-care check-list) HERE

4.  Photos

To me, a house is not a home until the faces of my loved ones are proudly displayed for all to see! There is nothing more soothing than taking some time to look at the smiling memories that I have featured throughout each room. New friends that visit can ask about the photos which kick-starts easy conversation and I can start to add photos of my new experiences abroad to successfully merge my two worlds together.

5.  Smells

Is there a certain smell that reminds you of home?

Since I was small, I have always loved the scent of fresh linen (it reminds me of crawling into freshly washed bed sheets) so this is always my top candle scent choice!
Take some time to think back on your childhood memories or experiences in your native country and pick out some smells that resonate with you. Whether it’s fresh lavender pouches in your clothes drawers, a spiced candle or freshly cut lilies in a vase in the kitchen, you should be ensuring that your new house abroad surrounds you with comforting smells whenever you spend time there.

6.  Entertain

One of the best remedies for homesickness is building friendships in your new home. Ensure that your living space compliments a new and exciting social life! Create welcoming areas for any guests that stop by and make the role of host as easy as possible for yourself. Ensure you are always stocked up with coffee, tea and easy-to-grab snacks and you’ll be the ‘Monica from Friends’ of your new town before you know it!

How have you styled your new house abroad? Have you found pieces of your native country sneaking in….?

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    September 26, 2018 at 1:01 pm

    i deff want to keep this article handy for when i have kids!!

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