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Your New York City survival guide – words Al Woods
Welcome to the biggest and what many believe is the best place in the entire country: New York City. Maybe living in the heart of our nation’s fast-moving center of gravity has been a lifelong dream for you, or maybe you’ve come here reluctantly to follow a career opportunity or relationship. Whatever your reasoning, you’re here now and, boy, are you in for it.
Don’t get us wrong. New York City is a thrilling, fascinating, and wonderful place. When it’s at its best, it can make you feel comfortable and at home while also reminding you that you live in one of the world’s truly unique and important places. But with all of that said, New York City sure can be a tough place to get by sometimes. Between the high-stress commutes, competitive professional scenes, and crowded city streets, New York City can be a real drain your mind and your overall health.
That’s why we’re here to help. Below, we’ll lay out what you need to do to thrive in this crazy city. Live your best life, and live it right here!
Join the club
“Water, water, everywhere, nor any drop to drink” Samuel Taylor Coleridge wrote. Hi was talking about sea water (don’t try to drink it!), but he could’ve been talking about the crowds in New York City, where there are people everywhere but often nobody to connect with.
Crowds and large groups can be isolating. In small towns, strangers are just friends you haven’t met yet. Here, they’re people that you really should leave alone, but if you never bother anyone in public, it can be difficult to just strike up a conversation, make friends, or even find romantic partners.
Our advice is to Join a club. When you narrow the population down into smaller groups with shared interest and willingness to get to know each other, you will have a much better shot of making the the meaningful connections that can make life more enjoyable.
Care for your mental health
Your mind is important no matter where you live and work — it’s where the real “you” lives, and how healthy it is will color your perception of quite literally everything. Unfortunately, some of the things that your mind needs in order to stay healthy — things like alone time, great nutritious food, exercise, and work-life balance — can be in short supply here in New York City.
But that just means that you’ll have to work extra hard to protect your mind and your mindset. Strive to protect your diet, your exercise, and your sleep patterns. And consider going to therapy, too! Therapy in NY is a great choice, especially given the stresses of the big city and the fantastic mental health professionals who practice here.
Remember: You’re a real New Yorker
New York City is huge and important, and that can imbue some of the people here with an outsized sense of their own worth. That’s part of the reason that you get people sizing each other up as “real” New Yorkers. Were you raised here? Are you from a “real” borough, or Staten Island? Do you willingly go to New Jersey? Have you had all the necessary rites of passage, as determined by some blogger on some website?
The longer you’re here, though, the more you’ll realize how silly all of this stuff is. Most New Yorkers don’t despise the suburbs and don’t spend all of their time obsessing over their own legitimacy. Everyone who is here belongs here, including you so embrace our city and make it your own!