I had only visited New York City twice before I moved here! Once for Fashion Week, and the second time to find an apartment. (I guess I instantly knew I wanted to be here!) When I finally got settled into my little studio on the Upper East, I was completely locked into 'adventure' mode. I passed on taking taxies and the subway just so I could walk everywhere and explore every little part of this island that was still so new to me. I felt like such a tourist stopping to take pictures of every cute restaurant or coffee shop that I wanted to try, jotting down lists of places I wanted to come back to and explore further, sitting in every park I could to read and dream, and just breathing in Manhattan.
Treating your new city like you would as if you were visiting for the first time again and again gives you a fresh perspective. Embracing the new with an open, adventurous heart and eagerness to explore will help keep you in a positive mindset amidst all of the changes.
FIND YOUR 'TRIBE':
I don't know what I'd do without all of the beautiful, sweet, talented, and amazing friends that I've made this year in New York. They've helped make this city home for me, and have been a form of family to me here, and for that I will be forever grateful. It was so hard leaving my family and all of my friends in Texas before I moved to New York. I'm so close to my family, and had known a lot of my friends through college. I left sooo many of my best friends back in Texas, and I miss them and my family every day.
Finding a great group of friends is key when making any move to a new city. I knew that I needed to find community in New York in order to make the transition easier on myself and to feel better about making such a big change, so I opened myself up to the idea of meeting new people anywhere that I could. That's the beauty of big cities... They are filled with endless opportunities to make new friends. I met people through: Church, Blog Events, City activities- i.e. concerts, movies, art galleries. The opportunities are endless, and if you go into each activity with an open heart you're sure to meet and connect with some incredible people.
Since leaving college and entering the real world, I've found that it is very important for me to take a step back and reflect, re-group, and re-charge amidst the busyness of the everyday hustle and bustle. It's so easy to get overwhelmed with so many changes: new city, new job, new friends, new home... Trust me, overwhelmed was an understatement for me during my first few months here. (More on that another time.)
Sometimes, we just need to reflect and get centered in order to stay sane. (Especially in a city like NYC where there is life happening all around you on a regular basis!) Whether you do that through attending church regularly, sitting in at motivational group talks, speaking to a therapist, or practicing yoga, there are several ways to re-center and re-group. It's the best way to stay calm, centered, and focused.
CREATE A ROUTINE:
Being in a city that is completely new to you can be daunting and a bit overwhelming at times. It's important to create a routine that helps you feel more at home and that helps you become accustomed to your new surroundings and environment.
When I was back in Texas I had my favorite coffee shops, restaurants, nail salons, and spots that I would frequent on a regular basis. Creating that small sense of 'regularity' around you makes you feel more comfortable and content with all of the new changes.
I've created that same sense of comfort here in New York as well. After quite a bit of exploring within my first year, I now know favorite spots for a morning latte, the best coffee shops to work on my blog from, and can list off a few favorite haunts for happy hours with friends. All of these things, and more have helped make this city feel much more like home to me.
Moving to a new city is a huge step, and such an amazing opportunity to learn, grow, and find yourself. Be patient with yourself throughout the process, and amidst each new change. From finding friends, to creating your routine, and getting accustomed to your new job... things take time and everyone's experience is different.
Make the most of your new city by embracing it's newness in any way that you can, and be open to the opportunity to learn and grow. Change is never easy, but it's all in the way that we embrace it and the perspective that we have towards it that make the journey exciting and worth it.