1) Before you move, network!
Get in touch with family, friends, friends of friends, fellow alumni, old neighbours, and whoever you may be able to. If these people live in the city you're moving to, they could become great friends (if they aren't already). If they lived there in the past, but have now moved away, don't be afraid to ask for tips! Knowing about where to shop, the best neighbourhoods to live in, fun things to do, etc, before you move to the city, can save you valuable time settling in!
2) Get help with your move!
I speak from personal experience when I say that taking along a friend or family member to help with the move and initial settling down can be very helpful. It's even better if this person can stay a few extra days and explore your new home with you!
3) Make sure to stay in touch with family and friends from home.
Moving to a new place doesn't mean losing touch with those who're far away, and staying in touch with these people means that they're still an important part of your life! Again, I speak from personal experience; sometimes, distance works wonders in making these relationships even closer.
4) If you've already found a job in your new city, ask your co-workers for tips .
Maybe they know about the amazing restaurant down the street that has half off on Wednesdays that you happened to miss. Or the concert that you should definitely check out. Either way, many of these people have probably been in your situation before, and understand what it's like to move to a new place where you don't know as many people as you'd like. Maintaining good relationships with your coworkers is also a great way to make friends!
5) Look for networks you could join.
For example, when I was in Iowa, I started attending meetings of the American Marketing Association. I didn't stay long enough to join, but I definitely got to meet some new people, and learn new things! Most big cities have young professional networks, and some that are more specialised that welcome new members.
6) Get to know your neighbours.
When I was in university, most of my best friends were people I lived close to freshman year. We may not be in dorms anymore, but getting to know the people you live around can be very helpful; not only will you probably make good friends, but you'll know that you can rely on them if you need to (and vice versa)!
7) Sign up for a class you've always wanted to take.
New city, new start right? If you feel that in your old place, it would have been kind of weird if the straight-laced software engineer wanted to take up creative writing, now's the time to go for it!! You're in a new place, and have a chance to do things that you've always wanted to, but never got to because you were in a comfort zone of sorts.
8) Remember to be open to new experiences and new people.
I'll say it again; you're in an entirely new place, and it wouldn't be fair to expect it to be like the place you moved from. Be open and ready for experiences you wouldn't have encountered before, and be willing to meet people who may differ from the people you usually socialise with. Go ahead and have some fun with life!
9) Don't be afraid to go out on your own.
Whether this is a new city where you know a few people, or a new city where you don't know anyone at all, one of the best ways to get settled in is to go out exploring on your own. So go ahead and make reservations for one at that fun Italian restaurant you drove by, or sign up for a nature walk by yourself. One thing though: remember to be careful and do your research! Let's just say that you don't want your adventure alone to take you to any unsavoury neighbourhoods.
10) Push yourself.
You're going to have to be more active about doing things. As the new person in town, you're going to have to make the effort to go out and meet people, to learn about your city, to get comfortable. Don't wait for things and people to happen to you; go out there and familiarise yourself with your new home!
Do you have any tips for adjusting to a new city? Leave them in the comments below!