Far From Home for the Holidays

Whatever the reason, If you aren’t headed home for the winter break, it can feel lonely. While you can’t fix that feeling there are coping strategies to help you make it through. 

Make the Most of Technology

Thankfully, technology has friends, loved ones and family only a few clicks away. It’s a hectic time for many so make plans in advance for when and how you will connect over the break. If time differences cause obstacles for real time communication, make a group chat and post photos and videos throughout the day to keep up with what your loved ones are up to. You can also get creative with how you connect- play games together virtually, stream a classic movie together, or bake alongside one another. 

Give Back

It can be easier to wallow in your solitude but volunteering with community organizations can benefit both those in need and yourself! Giving back to others can help you to find friends, connect with the community and learn new skills. It also has mental health benefits as it has been found to reduce stress, combat depression and boost self-esteem. 

Find Volunteer opportunities:

Thunder Bay


Treat Yourself

You’ve just wrapped up one semester and are about to dive into another- the break is the perfect opportunity to practice self-care! Self-care looks different for everyone- so whether it’s a netflix binge of cheesy holiday films, sleeping in until noon or playing video games all day- do it without guilt! There is no shame in spending the day doing whatever you want. 

If you ever grow tired of relaxing and are looking for a more productive project- cross off some items that have been lingering on your to-do list: re-organize that closet and clean out that fridge. As long as it make you feel better, it’s the thing you are supposed to be doing.

Finally, make plans for fun! Find time for things your enjoy that you might not have time for the rest of the year.

Host Yourself

Just because you aren’t back home, doesn’t mean you are relegated to delivery apps and microwave meals. Prepare meals for one and re-create traditional recipes if you are missing them- there are recipe converters that can help scale down large recipes so you aren’t left with a week's worth of leftovers (if you are down for that, that is okay too).

Acknowledge your feelings

No matter how much you plan or prepare to fly solo over the break- there are still going to be some feelings of sadness or jealousy. Those feelings, or any other feelings you may have about being far from home over the break, are valid. Allow yourself to feel those feelings and express them healthily.

Reach out for Support

You might feel lonely but you are not alone in this- let loved ones know how you are feeling or reach out to more formal support:

  • If you are in crisis- call or text 9-8-8

  • TalkCampus is a global, student peer support app available 24/7. Use your Lakehead email to sign up.

  • Good2Talk is a 24/7 helpline available to post-secondary students in Ontario and can provide service in 100+ languages.

  • Use the WellUKey to check in on your mental health and see a wide range of supports and resources available to you as a Lakehead student.

-Lindsey Wachter, Health Promoter

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