Relocating to a large city from the countryside or a small town can be a shock to your system, regardless of your reasons for going. It will take a couple of months for you to adjust to the clamor and fast pace in a busy city. But remember, cities are exciting, too, and you needn’t feel overwhelmed. These tips will help you acclimatize and start making the most of city life.
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In most cases, packing up and relocating from a small town to large urban center means downsizing your home. If you’re used to a three-bedroom bungalow, you might find it hard to squeeze into a tiny, possibly damp apartment on the fifteenth floor, with neighbors on all sides. (But look on the bright side: a tiny apartment requires less tidying and cleaning, right?) Easing your transition from a spacious house to a small flat begins even before you leave your old home. Before you get started on your packing, it’s worth working out which of your belongings and pieces of furniture are essential to your comfort and happiness, and which aren’t.
Start by designating boxes in three categories: “essential”, “re-home” and “maybe”. Remember, you have to be cruel to be kind sometimes—you’re not doing yourself any favors by hanging onto things you don’t really need, and that doesn’t bring you joy. When it comes time to pack up the car and head off to your new city, take only the boxes containing your essentials. That doesn’t necessarily mean that your “Maybe” items won’t ever make their way to your new flat. Ask a friend to stow those boxes for you in their attic, or keep them in storage for a couple of months. While you may think storage costs won’t fit into your moving budget, this promo code could help you out. (You’re welcome!)
Once you’ve unpacked your essentials in your new home, you’ll soon find out what things in your “maybe” boxes you miss, and the little extras you actually do have space for. That way, you have control over what to reintroduce into your new life, rather than ending up in a small flat cluttered with things you won’t use.
Accept That Noise is Part of Life
One of the most noticeable changes, when you move to the big city, is the constant din of construction and traffic. This never-ending noise can be really tough on someone who has come from a place where you can hear the crickets at night. When the noise starts to stress you out—and it will—try reassuring yourself that after a few months, you are likely to stop noticing how loud everything is. The roar a city bus the scream of police sirens won’t make you jump out of your skin anymore.
While you might learn to zone out day-to-day noise, the sounds of the city at night can be more troubling. Noise from outside can negatively impact your sleep if you don’t find ways to noise-proof your apartment.
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Rebrand Noise & Activity as Exciting Buzz
The noise of the city and the feeling of being jostled in the street might wear on your nerves during your first month or two. When you’re feeling stressed, and even tempted to move home to your nice quiet town, remind yourself that the constant din and fast pace of city life are signs of the intense activity and rich life of the place that beckoned to you and possibly drew you to the city in the first place. Looking at these stress-provoking factors in a more positive light won’t make people stop pushing past you in the line for bus tickets, but it could help you feel more positive about the experience of being in the city until you begin to feel more at home.
Get Your Head Around Public Transport
If you got around your hometown in your own car, getting your head around using public transport may present a challenge. While it may be intimidating at first, don’t let yourself avoiding catching the bus or the train. Once you’ve taken that first ride, and been around the city a couple of times, you may start to see that the system is not as complex as you feared. You just have to get your head around the routine. Those intimidating ticketing systems or the incomprehensible route maps may scare you at first, but navigating your new city will soon become second nature.
Whether you’re moving to take an exciting new job, or you’re moving for love, leaving your old life behind for a new life in an urban center won’t be easy. These tips will help you adjust to the new pace of life.