This is your life now. Whether you’re just thinking about a change of scenery or you’ve recently moved across country, relocating to a new city can be thrilling and terrifying as you attempt to navigate your new surroundings and meet new people.

It won’t always be easy, but it always be a learning experience. And while you’re on this journey, remember these 4 lessons:

1. Don’t be afraid to explore on your own

When you first move to a new place, you may feel isolated yet terrified to go out exploring on your own. Unless you lose your fear of meeting new people, you’re going to fall into a dangerous rut. Even if you do know people in your city, see the sights and explore off the beaten path without a soul beside you. Experience your environment from your own perspective and form your own opinions before your existing friends convince you of theirs.

2. Make your home a place of comfort

After you’ve spent a day out of your element or when you’re exhausted from tracing your steps in order to remember the way back home, your dwelling should be a place of peace and comfort. Even if the rest of the town or city makes you feel overwhelmed, make your space a place you want to come home to and unwind. It’s not going to feel like your home just yet, and it’s not going to feel as warm and inviting as your childhood home right away, but it’ll get there. Give it time.

3. Stop comparing

Comparison is the thief of joy. When you begin comparing every last detail of your life to your previous experiences and places, you’ll get sucked into a downward spiral of disappointment. Your new city might not have your favorite cozy coffee shop or the friendly neighbors down the street that might as well be your second family. But it might have a gorgeous park just around the corner or a nice grocery store across the street. Embrace what you have and accept your surroundings without comparing them to what you once had. You can’t change it; you might as well enjoy it!

4. Never forget where you came from

Just because you can’t walk over to your best friend’s house for the afternoon, or make the short drive to your parents’ for supper, doesn’t mean you’re without those relationships. Sure, not seeing the important people in your life face-to-face is going to take some getting used to, but relationships are all about effort. Make time to call your siblings and keep up with their lives. Keep tabs on your friends and check in with them every so often. When it feels like the world is spinning in your new life and your feet are far from touching the ground, pick up the phone and give a family member or friend a call. They’ll keep you grounded when it feels like you’re running too fast.

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