Think of your shift as an adventure. There’ll be stressful parts, but ultimately it’ll be rewarding.
Some people spend their whole lives in the same town or city. It’s easy to see why – everyone’s familiar, you know the best places to hang out and you never have to face the prospect of lugging everything you own to a new location full of strangers and weird shops.
But uprooting your life and starting afresh somewhere else has plenty of romantic appeal. Whether it’s for work, study, a change or a challenge you’ve set yourself, it’s bound to be an adventure.
This means it won’t always be easy, and sometimes you’ll wanna go hooooome. But with these tips, you’ll get on the right path and (hopefully) have some fun.
If you can, team up with other newcomers
One of the main reasons people move is to study – and if you’ve shifted to Sydney because of school or uni, it’s likely that other students are in the same boat as you. Take advantage of any “getting to know each other” sessions, and make the effort to connect with as many people as possible.
Sometimes this means putting yourself out there when it’s the last thing you feel like, but it’ll be worth it once you have a few people you can tag in Insta pics.
Force yourself to explore
Have you ever taken a cat to a new home? The first thing they do is find a couch to hide under while they make sure the coast is clear of enemies. It’s tempting to stay in your new place, especially once you have the internet connected, but the best way to settle in to these alien surroundings is to go for a walk.
Find out where the nearest shops are, get yourself a coffee at the local cafe and – if you’re feeling extra-adventurous – try to strike up a convo with the barista about how you’ve just moved in. They might have some tips for you.
Look for locals with similar hobbies
If you’re a skater, find out where the local ramps are. If you play bass, keep an eye out for girls carrying guitars. If you’re a gamer, visit the local game store and find out what people are playing.
Shared hobbies take the pressure off having to make friends straight away, because you can focus on whatever you’re doing instead of trying too hard to make conversation. There’s a site called Meetup that’s great for finding people who share your love of cooking, training for marathons or whatever…
Give yourself a break
Don’t feel like you have to be switched on, exploring and making new friends all day every day. Sometimes you’ll feel exactly like that couch-lurking cat, and that’s fine – especially if you’re an introvert. Take the time to veg, recharge, read a book, play a game, paint your nails and enjoy the comforts of your new living space.
Celebrate the differences
When everything’s different to how it was back home, it can be stressful. Try to look at things from another perspective – you’re expanding your experiences and learning new things without even meaning to. This might not seem obvious, but the first time one of your old friends comes to visit you’ll see how much you’ve grown into your new home.
Keep in contact with your old mates
Which leads to the final point – don’t neglect the relationships you’ve already built up in life. Whether you’re sending funny Snapchats to your mates, texting or having actual phone conversations, it’s important to keep a lifeline to home. Try to keep this up even once you’ve settled in.