So many people dream of moving to a new city, but not as many people actually do it. That's because moving is scary, and the idea of starting over fresh somewhere far away can be enough to make you stay put. But if you're brave enough to give it a try, there are some ways to make adjusting to a new town a little bit easier.
I've moved a lot in my life, and I've found that the times where it was my idea were a lot easier. This of course makes a lot of sense. Being forced to move somewhere (maybe for a job, or because your family moved) can be a heck of a lot less exciting than going somewhere just because you want to. We'd all rather move because it's a life goal than because someone is making us.
But in either situation, moving to a new city should be viewed as an exciting opportunity. Think about it. So many people spend their whole lives in a few square miles of land, and here you are in a brand new place. I say take advantage of the opportunity, and look for ways to have fun and meet new people.
Moving can be scary and overwhelming, but trust that you will eventually feel at home wherever you end up. Here are some tips for speeding up the process and adjusting to life in a new city.
1. Find Your Local Go-To Spots
Whenever I move to a new town, I know I've finally made it when the locals start recognizing me. Barista remembers my order? Cool, I'm obviously a full-fledged member of the town now. It may seem silly, but being recognized does make you feel like part of the community. But this won't happen if you hole up all day at home. So try to live your life just as you would have in your old town — get a favorite coffee shop, bookstore, and bar — and you'll soon become a known face in the community.
2. Say Yes To Work Outings
It doesn't matter if you live for happy hour, or hate the very idea of mini appetizers and karaoke. You should still make an effort to hang out with coworkers. You'll bond with them, which will make work a lot easier and more comfortable. And it'll give you the chance to meet other people who may end up becoming close friends.
3. Volunteer As A Way Of Meeting Nice People
I've volunteered so many times in my life, and not once have I disliked any of my fellow volunteers. That's because anyone whoever is going to give up their time to do something for free is bound to be pretty darn nice. And when you're cold and alone in a new city, who better to hang out with than nice people? Think about putting in some time at an animal shelter, a youth group, or soup kitchen. You'll make friends and help out your town in the process. What's better than that?
4. Join A Meet Up Group
You can leave meeting people up to chance, or you can take it into your own hands and join a Meetup group. Metope groups bring together people with like interests, so you're pretty much guaranteed to have something in common with whoever shows up. There are meetup groups for pretty much everything, but if you don't see one you like, go ahead an make your own. Then rejoice in all your new friendships.
5. Get A Library Card Right Now
Whenever I move to a new town, I make sure to get my library card as soon as I can. I look at it as a rite of passage, just like getting a license with my new address, or new plates on my car. Of course everyone can hang out in the library, but only bonafide locals get the privilege of checking out books. It'll definitely make you feel like you're right at home.
6. Be A Tourist For The Day
Your knee-jerk reaction to being in a new place may be to put on some sunglasses and blend in. But there's nothing wrong with strapping on a fanny pack and being an obvious tourist for the day. In fact, I say go all out and get to know your new city the old-fashioned way. Sit next to a bunch of foreign exchange students on a tour bus, take pictures, visit monuments, and take photos of everything. You'll get to know your city, which will help you avoid getting lost, and you'll also learn all the history of your new home.
Moving to a new city can be scary and overwhelming, but if you get out into the community, you're sure to feel like it's your new home in no time.
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