1. You will get lost, a lot
Your GPS will become your best friend but even still you will inevitably find yourself wondering where you are 9 times out of 10. You will become familiar with things based on the fact that you have previously been lost in that area before. Gradually you will use Siri less and less but get ready for the first few weeks to be filled with “damnit, that was my exit” and the 30 minutes of pure confusion that will follow that.
2. You will be many other things other than excited
Everyone will naturally ask you if you are excited to be in a new city. You will be, because why else would you have moved here? But, beneath that you will be lonely, overwhelmed, exhausted, and a couple of other things people won’t want to stick around and hear you babble on about.
3. You’ll be surprised at exactly what you miss the most about the place you just came from
You think it’ll be your favorite place to grab brunch or meet for happy hour and instead you find yourself in the throes of a small depression when it’s your favorite grocer from Trader Joe’s that always use to bag your groceries. People and places you were sure would make you homesick don’t even cross your mind and yet the little things that you probably took for granted become the most easily missed.
4. You won’t be in love with everything about your new location
Just like a new relationship the first few dates are pure perfection, but eventually, even in the most perfect relationships, you are going to find out things that are a little irritating that you have to learn to live with. When I was interviewing for my new job in Denver I couldn’t talk enough about all the great things about the city — yet now that I’m here I’ve learned that the traffic is out of this world, everything is always crowded and the housing market is the worst thing I’ve ever seen. I’m still more than happy to be living here – but that does not mean you don’t have to accept some negatives too.
5. People will mistake you for a tourist
It’s hard to lose that “fresh off the boat” look when you’re new in town. Sometimes people will refer to places or locations that are staples for locals that you honestly have no idea existed. Other times it’ll be because you’re wearing clothes that aren’t the norm for that part of the country. You’ll want to take pictures of everything and everyone because to you it’s the very first time you’re experiencing it.
6. You will feel like a lone wolf for being loyal to your home teams
You grew up cheering for the Jets (sad for you) and now you live in San Francisco. Ditto being a lifelong Lakers fan who just relocated to Boston. It will be hard for you to swallow that now you are in a city where you your team isn’t obnoxiously cheered by every bar patron and instead you are the only one wearing a worn out Brady jersey in a Bronco’s town.
7. There is a local delicacy and you will learn to love it
It’s different in every city but it’s definitely true. The best thing to do is surrender to it and whatever you do – do not insist your hometown does it better.
8. Making new friends is hard
This isn’t a newsflash to anyone but post college, finding quality adult friends that you can hangout with is harder than finding a potential spouse. Of course, you’ll naturally go out with new co-workers and/or roommates but beyond that you really have to put yourself out there in order to meet new people.
9. It doesn’t solve everything
A lot of people move to reinvent themselves and that’s great but it also isn’t the catch all for all of life’s problems. If you’re in introvert, it won’t make you more outgoing. If you’re always looking for love, it’s doesn’t automatically provide you with millions of dates. It’s a chance to start over but if what you moved for was to run away from existing issues and past mistakes it won’t solve all of that.
10. This isn’t your last move
You’ll get use to the idea that this is your new forever place, and maybe it is, maybe it isn’t – regardless you’re going to move again. Hopefully it’ll just be across town or to a different part of the state, either way you’ll swear to never move again and that will be a lie. Accept it now and enjoy it for what it is – life.