Post-Erasmus depression? Be gone!
In one way or another, almost everyone suffers from post-Erasmus depression. Here are a few ways to not give in to it.
Your Erasmus has just ended and you have to return to real life. Your Erasmus friends have already left, and you are sitting at the airport waiting for your plane. You are asking yourself: What now?
When you are back home, you meet your old friends and keep talking about your Erasmus experiences: how you hitchhiked to four countries; how you jumped off a cliff on your birthday; how you watched countless sunsets at the beach… However, after some time your friends are tired of your stories and you find yourself depressed instead of happy that you are back home.
We can imagine how hard it can be to overcome post Erasmus depression. So here are some tips on how to fight against it.
1. Motivate other students.
If you like talking about your Erasmus adventures but your friends are tired of it… find a new audience!! It is important to spread knowledge about a study abroad opportunity.. You can contact secondary schools, or your university, and offer them a presentation about your experiences. You can motivate younger students to take part in mobility programmes and give them advice how to write motivational letters, prepare for a journey, survive the first days... basically explain everything you had learnt during your exchange.
2. Find a great job.
Everything comes to the end; and unfortunately, so does student life. Your parents will not give you money all the time, so you will have to find a job one day. And when could be better than right after your Erasmus? You have a proof you are able to speak a foreign language, you are capable of working and living in an international environment and have gained many other skills that employers are searching for. Furthermore, you do not need to find a job in your home country. After your Erasmus, it is understable to want to find a job abroad. On the other hand, if you do not feel too adult, and have a long term job, you can try an internship at first.
3. Join the Couchsurfing community.
Couchsurfing is perfect if you miss physical contact with people from around the world and speaking foreign languages. The main idea is offering free accommodation for other free members with similar mindsets. It is an amazing platform for cheap travelling and meeting people from different cultures. Travel around the world from your couch for free!
4. Travel forever.
If you really don’t feel good staying in one place, and think you just need something more, grab your still unpacked backpack and travel. Travel to Asia, USA, Australia...wherever where you can buy a cheap flight and embrace your adventurous future. You may visit your Erasmus friends and experience a new adventure of a lifetime.
5. Join another mobility programme.
First of all, if you feel really unhappy in your home country and do not want to stay there, you can join another mobility programme or internship. Nowadays you can join the Erasmus+ programmes more than once so why not to take advantage of it?
However, keep in mind that it will not be the same as your previous exchange, but there is the chance that it could be even better. ESN has a whole project dedicated to motivating students to participate in different mobility programmes. It's called Mov'in Europe and it's pretty great. Check it out HERE.
6. Find a new hobby.
The best way to get rid of Erasmus depression is to join ESN. Joining ESN is the beginning of a never-ending Erasmus in your home country. You will be surrounded by exchange students all the time who become your friends and international family. ESN provides you with so many more opportunities: from helping other exchange students to your own personal growth. Find your local section HERE.
This might feel like a very personal piece, but above all it is meant to highlight the inspiration, skills, and self exploration that leaving your comfort zone can bring, whether that’s an exchange, volunteering or simply being honest with yourself.