New Beginnings: 5 Practical Tips for Starting Over in a New City

Starting over in a new city is exciting but also a bit daunting. Everything’s new, which adds to the exciting side of the equation. But everything’s unknown, which adds to the daunting side. To help you get your bearings and find your emotional footing, here are five practical tips for starting over: 

1. Say goodbye to the old city

Ideally, when you embark on a fresh start, you want to spend all your time and attention exploring your new surroundings rather than worrying about your old ones. To avoid the latter, wrap up whatever needs to be done before you leave.

For example, if you need to get rid of heavy household goods in Melbourne before moving to Sydney, make sure you find cheap removalists in Melbourne beforehand. Otherwise, you might be stuck dealing with long-distance logistics rather than appreciating your new life.

2. Become a regular 

Whether it’s the cafe on the corner or a nearby bar or restaurant, find a place you like to go. Then, go there often. Get to know the staff and other familiar faces. Becoming a regular is as easy as that.

Even if you don’t become best friends, having a group of people in the neighborhood who recognize you is a great way to build a sense of community. Plus, it creates a routine that fosters comfort and familiarity in your new surroundings.

3. Attend local events

Kids make friends easily, but that process gets a bit more difficult as you age. Many adults find it difficult to make new friends, but doing so will ease your transition into a new city. Alongside getting to know the staff and locals at a favorite cafe, consider attending local events or joining clubs and groups. 

For some, that may be a bowling or basketball league. For others, something more artsy, such as a painting night or theater group. In either case, find groups based on your interests and hobbies. Then, show up and make friends.  

4. Be a tourist

Places for inspiration

Many locals don’t want to be seen as a tourist in their own city. However, for newbies, it’s a great way to explore a new area, so don’t be ashamed of playing the tourist. Look at travel blogs, brochures, or the crowd-sourced Wikivoyage to find landmarks, attractions, and restaurants worthy of exploration. Better yet, take a guided tour to get local knowledge of your new home. 

If a park, landmark, or attraction strikes your fancy, consider becoming a regular. Even if you don’t meet anyone new there, the place itself will allow you to enjoy the city more.

5. Say yes and be curious

All too often, people get stuck in old habits when they’ve lived somewhere for a long time. That’s why moving to a new city can be so exciting—it provides a great opportunity to shake up old patterns. Not only are the buildings, parks, and cafes new, but so are the people and the opportunities they present. 

The more you say “yes” to those opportunities, the more your comfort zone expands. Furthermore, you’re more likely to make new friends and learn new things. Be sure to stay curious by asking plenty of questions and embracing the unknown. 

Moving from familiar surroundings to somewhere new can be a bit stressful, even if it is exciting. To get over that initial jitteriness and make a new city feel like home, tie up loose ends in your old city, become a regular, attend local events, act like a tourist, and say yes to whatever comes your way. You’ll make friends, build community, and feel like a local in no time.

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