No matter how old you are and what stage at life you’re at, uprooting your entire world and relocating to a new city can be a nerve wracking experience. Between finding new neighborhood favorites, maintaining sociability, and overcoming anxiety, the whole move can leave you feeling mentally, emotionally and physically exhausted.
But who says the adjustment has to be intimidating? Settling in a new city has the ability to push you beyond the reaches of comfort and force you to grow as a person as you discover the joys a brand new world awaits you.
To help you make a smooth transition and have that new city feel like home, we share stress-free ways to cozily settle in, and take the next chapter of your life to greater heights.
Find the right place to live
Moving to a new home, let alone city can be tough. But regardless of the situation, it’s essential to find the perfect place to live. While “perfect” is subjective to everyone’s own needs, it’s important to consider logistics with regards to your job and any immediate needs — not to mention, your budget as well. For instance, the suburbs might be less expensive than that city apartment, but also further out from amenities — what can you sacrifice for a happy living? How long is the commute? Find your sense of place by utilizing apps and websites like Trulia and Zillow, which help make it easier to find the quintessential spot.
Use social media to understand “real” experiences
One of the best ways to really figure out a new city is by reading up on it. Travel guides and books can only tell you so much, but the really nitty gritty of a city you’re moving to lies deep within the internet — we’re talking forums like Reddit and groups found on Google and Facebook. Moreover, head to review sites like Yelp or Instagram to get a firsthand look of neighborhoods. Additionally, MeetUp, which has about 25 million monthly users, offer a little more than 200,000 meeting groups unified by common interests like politics, hobbies, careers, movies and fitness.
Take a walkabout
One of the best ways to settle down in a new city is to act like a local and take a walkabout. Do as the locals do, embrace culture and fashion; frequent popular hot spots like the fabulous restaurants, theatres, farmers markets, malls or boutiques and whatever else interests you. This will expand your mind to new possibilities and opportunities, while also making your more approachable. Take initiative — do your part to get involved with like-minded people and engage in activities or hobbies that are meaningful to you. Additionally, walkabouts can help you find comfortable spots outside work and home that is bustling with community. In many cities, this is the “quiet” afternoon café.
Consider friends of friends
It might have been easy in college to make friends, but things are a little different when you’re an adult. Ask friends from your current city if they have friends in the new city you’re heading to with the hope they will introduce you. From there, keep connections via email and social media until you move, that way you have friends the moment you arrive and won’t feel as homesick as you initially imagined. When the time comes, plan or accept invitations to get-togethers and events in hopes to expand your social circles. That said, never forget your old friends and make sure you connect with them on a regular basis.
Give yourself time to feel comfortable
No matter how prepared you might be, give yourself credit for trying and know that it will take time to really adjust. You might feel lonely and a bit dislocated, but it gets better. There’s no point in pining at home, looking through old photos on social media of the life you had and wondering what everyone is doing — you are in a new city and should seize the moment no matter how you feel. Don’t be afraid to explore on your own. This is an empowering way to reinstate your independence and confidence, while helping you to find peace in your new environment for a more resonated presence.