Starting over is hard. Whether it’s moving to a new state, or picking a college far from home, the life you knew becomes a fading image in your rearview mirror and suddenly the future looks like a flat desert. Here’s what I learned from my experience starting over.
1. It’s okay to spend a Saturday night in with the parents.
2. You will miss your old life, and it will hurt. But it shouldn’t make you regret your bold choice to move on.
3. Try not to let your old life consume you. You moved for a reason, right? Embrace that reason and push through it.
4. Just because it’s not as easy to meet friends as it was in college doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you. These things take time.
5. Having a lot of free time means you get to find new things to love and enjoy. Explore your options.
6. Enjoy the time you get to spend with your family because there may be a time when you move away from them again.
7. When you do make friends, it’s okay to fill up your schedule with them.
8. If the choice is between a spontaneous late-night movie party and sleep, choose the movies. Sleep is overrated but memories aren’t.
9. Don’t question how your friendships are made. If you bond with someone the first day you meet him or her, cherish that.
10. Alcohol isn’t always necessary for a good time. It is always acceptable to take a break from the bars.
11. Your new friends aren’t replacing your old ones. Let the two groups integrate. Beautiful things can happen when all of your people are in one place.
Finally, and most importantly…
12. This is a chance to recreate yourself. Fix the things that weren’t working in your old place, and enhance the things that were. You have a clean slate, so make the most of it.