5 Things To Expect When You Move From The Midwest To New York

Moving to the East Coast is a big decision coming from an 18-year-old Minnesotan. There are a few things you learn along the way. Moving here for college, I was in no way prepared for the obstacles and experiences I would have in the Big Apple. When I arrived, I moved to Flatbush, Brooklyn. I had never experienced Brooklyn before moving here, and was pleasantly and sometimes unpleasantly shocked by the walks of life that unfolded before my eyes.

1. Someone MAY try to push you onto the subway tracks. GET YOUR BEARINGS!

My second month in Brooklyn, I was traveling on the subway back to the airport in Queens. It was approximately 4 am, and other passengers were very few and far between. Standing on the yellow platform with my suitcase in hand, I felt a pair of hands pushing me forward. In order to avoid this, I shouldn’t have stood so close to the platform, my young, blonde innocence was apparently too tempting to some prankster. Yet the incident gave me quite a start, and gave me a lesson in the peopling of New York. As I struggled to catch my footing just before falling into the open tracks, I vowed never to stand so close again. Phew.

2. New York City slows down for NO ONE

Whether you’re running to catch a Q train, or running to find a new job, it is easy to quickly discover that New York is a breeding ground for fast paced individuals. The level of diversity of talents is astounding, and you will likely meet new people every day. This makes it difficult to differentiate between the real and the fake. Where are the real opportunities and those that are merely figments of the city’s bright lights? This skill will help develop you as an individual, no matter where you move across the globe.

3. Cockroaches are unavoidable, you CANNOT escape them

In every apartment in Brooklyn that I’ve ever called home, I have found cockroaches. Or, they have found me. It seems to be something that no roach spray can keep away. They are living beneath the city, in our walls, in our transportation, and in our food establishments. Exterminators can slow the problem minutely. Yet it seems the minute you feel confident there are no cockroaches in your dwelling, one rears it’s ugly head right beneath your refrigerator.

4. No matter where you are in New York, DETERMINATION IS KEY

As a musician, it is easy to get frustrated with the sheer number of other performers in the city attempting to do similar tasks. With so many on the same mission, you may begin to feel like there’s no point in continuing. Instead, JOIN FORCES with those trying to accomplish the same things. In my case, I try to meet as many musicians as possible, in order to further my chances of collaborating, performing, recording, etc.

5. Finally, DO NOT believe everything you SEE in New York City

This city is beautiful and full of life, yet also full of apparitions. Opportunities, people, and engagements are found in plethora in this city. However, many of them may be apparitions in the movement of thousands. Do not become too melancholy if your plans fall through, or you see the holes in the promises of an opportunity. You have yourself to rely on, at the end of the day. And your worth is more abundant than any book signing or record label, no matter what city you chose to reside in.

MAKE IT COUNT. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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