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Best Practices for Maintaining Mental Health While Studying Abroad

Posted on August 12, 2023
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Tips for maintaining mental health while studying abroad

  • Stay in touch with loved ones back in your home country
  • Take up hobbies such as music and art to be at peace
  • Take up meditation and yoga
  • Participate in community activities
  • Be friends with locals and learn about their culture

Best Practices for Maintaining Mental Health While Studying Abroad

Mental healthcare when studying overseas

Studying abroad is the most exciting part of many an individual’s life. It is also the turning point in the life of students as they would have yet to make up their minds fully about the career path they would pursue. They would then encounter unique experiences while studying abroad, including getting to meet mentors or peers who may change the way they perceive their future.

At the same time, it could be exciting as they are on their own and nobody would be supervising them. That said, it is the first time in a student’s life that he/she will stay independently. It would be a tough experience as it would be the first time in their lives that they would have nobody else to make decisions for them. They would meet people from different cultures who think, unlike their friends or peers in their home country. The food would also taste different, the culture would be totally strange, and the language the locals use is something they would have to get used to.

So, besides going to a new educational institution, you would have to overcome all the challenges mentioned above. As a student, you would have to remember that you are spending an important part of your life here.

All these may sound overwhelming, but there would be other foreign students like you for whom such an experience would be similar, and they too would be facing problems adjusting to life in the country. You can still maintain your mental health while studying abroad.

However, All of them can be dealt with if you follow certain approaches.

Stay regularly in touch with close friends and family members

During your first few days in the new country, you can feel alone. During this time, call your friends and family members back home. It can be truly relieving when you hear familiar voices over the phone. They wouldn’t want to see you down as they have high expectations from you. So, they would be sending encouraging messages across. They will motivate you when you are feeling down.

Spend time reflecting on your new life

When you study abroad, everything will seem unfamiliar and new to you. You will be tired both physically and mentally as you try to get over these new challenges. You can think over them and keep a diary of how events in your new home have affected you. You will also become conscious of how certain events have affected you. When you keep a diary, you would be writing down your experiences after giving them enough thought instead of reacting instantly.

In fact, when you write about your experiences in a diary, they will have more clarity because you would have thought twice before putting them on paper. When you read them after a few days, you will be able to understand much more clearly what’s going on in your mind. It will also help you relax a bit. Paying attention to what is happening to you will help you know more about yourself.

Exert yourself physically

It will be better if you work out on a daily basis. It need not be physically too strenuous. You can practice yoga, jog, or walk or got a gym. Exercising in any form is beneficial for both your physical and mental health. It relieves you of stress, makes you mentally agile, and helps you think positively.

Try being more creative

Since this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience of living alone, try drawing or painting, listening to music or practicing singing, or even trying a hand at poetry. You could discover one of the gifts you never thought you had. In addition to easing your stress, it may make you popular with one of your newly discovered talents in your new home. In the bargain, you will feel much better.

Try meditation

Meditation is reported to have helped many people throughout the world. What’s more, it does not require any new equipment or a place. You can do it wherever you are by yourself. The benefits of meditating include relief from stress, improving mental health, and reducing anxiety, among others.


Unlike in the past, mental health issues are also considered real problems. So, it is not unusual if you seek help while trying to adapt to a new place. Many offices and educational institutions have realized this and set up clinics in their spaces by hiring outside professionals to help people needing support and relief.

In fact, students can also make use of digital resources that are available online to help them maintain their mental health while they are studying abroad. Apps such as Headspace, Calm, and Happify, among others, are increasingly becoming popular online.

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