I think we can all agree that while starting over in a new place can be exhilarating, it can also be terrifying. I distinctly remember the day that I moved to New York- I was all smiles, telling my mom + friends that I’d been dreaming for this day – that I couldn’t wait for my suitcases to hit the floor and for my freedom to finally set it.
But when I hugged everyone goodbye, locked the door behind me and was alone in my room, I instantly began panicking. I realized I had almost no savings account, barely any furniture, and didn’t even know how to get to my new office for my first day of work! I was a complete puddle of tears within minutes. Murray Hill, the neighborhood that I had been dying to live in the entire time I searched for an apartment (anyone who lives in NYC knows that this is the most cliche thing of all time – Murray Hill is filled to the brim with 20-something year old professionals who split their time between cheap drafts at Bro J’s and batting off the under-aged jail bait from Westchester + Fairfield County who sneaked in at Turtle Bay) was suddenly the worst decision I ever made. Or so I thought.
It took me a couple of weeks, but I finally got used to the idea of becoming a New Yorker. I no longer screamed when a rat came across my path on the sidewalk (I definitely still jump a little now and then though), I could confidently shove my way into a subway car and tune out the angry sounds commuters make during rush hour, and I learned to truly appreciate Seamless in all of its glory. For those of you in an area where Seamless doesn’t reach, I’m so sorry. Please call your local councilman and right this terrible wrong- you’re being robbed!
Here are 5 things I wish I knew when I first moved to the city:
- Use Uber/Lyft/Taxis as little as possible. I don’t know why but when I first moved here, I acted like a Rockafeller. I was taking a cab to work almost every morning because I didn’t want to deal with the cold or the 10 minute walk to the subway. a $12 cab ride (give or take) wasn’t a big deal. Except it was, and I ended up spending literally $1,500 on cabs to work in the first 6 months I lived there (if not more). DO NOT DO THIS. You will regret it when it’s time to pay the bills and you can no longer justify the premium subscription to Hulu. Pro tip: Always go with the premium subscription to Hulu.
- Limit yourself to 2 nights of Seamless a week. This may seem cruel and contradicting to what I said earlier, but this is a must. Not only did my clothes seriously hate me after a while, but your bank account will take a huge hit. Seamless is AMAZING (I would never knock it, fr), but orders often have a minimum spend (so you end up ordering more food than you would normally eat), and then also have extra delivery fees and tipping fees. You end up ordering pasta from the diner and paying $25.00. It might be better for everyone to throw some chicken and minute rice into the microwave and call it a day once in a while.
- You will fight with your roommate (passive-aggressively or otherwise). I’m not a huge fighter. At least not in the sense where I enjoy confrontation and lots of yelling. I also hate feeling awkward and uncomfortable in my own home because of a situation I’m in with a roommate. Unfortunately, both of those things have happened since I’ve moved to the city. I’ve had a roommate where I literally said 15 words to her on a weekly basis and was constantly talking to my mom + friends about her annoying habits (conveniently forgetting that I had my own) – and I’m sure she did the exact same thing with her friends. I wish I’d said something to clear the air, because it made our living condition v. uncomfy for an entire year, and tbh, I still roll my eyes sometimes when I scroll past her feed. I just cannot with her.
- Swipe right. You know what I’m talking about. Bumble, Tinder, Match, whatever app it is you’re using, swipe right and then actually GO on the date. I cannot begin to count the number of times I’d swipe, match and talk to a guy for a few days, and then I’d be too nervous to go on a date and nothing ever came from it. Literally took me a YEAR to go on a date after swiping. What a WASTE, let me tell you! Free meals/activities and the potential for a good old fashioned make out? DO NOT PASS THIS UP, LADIES.
- You will get to a point where you feel like it hasn’t been your day, your week, your month, or even your year…. Seriously though, true story. The day will come when you started off spilling coffee all over your new white blouse from Zara, followed by a few work disasters/your boss chewing you out, a commute home that takes 40 minutes longer than its supposed to, and then a good cry in the shower because you feel like you can’t do anything right. *LISTEN* to me- IT’S NOT TRUE! There have been too many days for me to count where I called my mom in hysterics, telling her I wasn’t cut out for this, that I can’t do it and that I want to quit and come home. Honest to God. She quickly reminds me that living in her basement and becoming a professional stay-at-home daughter is not an option (I blame the Bachelorette for this idea- there was a guy on JoJo’s season who was a professional stay-at-home son #goals). She reminds me that this is the time to work hard, to hustle, to prove my worth in my industry – that all my hard work will pay off later. Pro tip: She’s right. If you’re having a bad day, turn on Friends and watch Ross find out that his Thanksgiving Leftover Sandwich with the Moist Maker has been taken from him, and then reconsider if you’re really having as bad a day as you think…