Being able to spend my 20’s living in New York City is amazing. I recognize that this is not an opportunity that everyone has and I have these moments when I am strolling down the streets of soho, hailing a cab in midtown or even waking up to sirens in my little east village apartment where I think to myself “this is the place to be”.
However, with that said, there are definitely positives and negatives about living in New York City versus other places, specifically the suburbs.
Everything is at your fingertips: Everything from restaurants, bars, gyms, workout classes, shopping and so, so much more is right there at your fingertips. No matter what you are craving, need or wanting you can find it and access it. It especially never ceases to amaze me how many drug stores there are. There is literally one at each and every (and I mean every) block. I live in the east village near one of the main subway stations so I am usually able to subway or walk mostly everywhere I go. Great exercise and saves money! Also, if you are too lazy to go places using Seamless or Postmates you can pretty much get anything delivered.
Tons of career opportunities: Just like there are many people in NYC, there are also tons of businesses, companies and therefore opportunities. No matter what industry you are in, there are typically multiple openings that fit what you’re looking for. That way you can hopefully have the opportunity to weigh your options and even negotiate your salary. In addition, there are tons of networking opportunities in NYC whether it be a casual happy hour in the financial district or a more formal gathering led by an organization in your industry.
The city that never sleeps: It’s true what they say that New York City never sleeps. It’s normal to be out to dinner until 11pm, a bar until 3am and never feel alone no matter what time you are walking the streets. This is so unlike the suburbs where everything shuts down at 10!
The shopping! The eating!: This is similar to the first one, but it’s so amazing and important that it’s worth touching on again. I find that all of my favorite stores are always better in New York City. They are bigger and there’s much more selection. No matter what you need to shop for and what your budget is, there is something here for you. Same thing goes for the eating. You can literally find every single cuisine here with the option of delivery, casual eat-in and high-end trendy atmospheres.
Lack of fresh air and nature: Whenever I go back to New Jersey (where I grew up) for the weekend I always notice those fresh, nature smells that I miss out on in NYC. Living in NYC you miss out on the beauty that comes with nature, which is why I think it is so important to escape for the weekend every once in a while. Especially during this time of year where being outside is just so refreshing.
People can be selfish: A lot of times I feel like everyone is just out for themselves in this city. We are so used to passing homeless people, seeing fights in the subway and being on the defense just walking on the sidewalk that New Yorkers have becoming partially immune to paying attention to others who are asking for help. Sometimes people are in a rush to get somewhere or maybe they are hesitant to help because they have been burned by helping before, either way it’s a tough place and you need to be strong to get by.
Not having your own car: I miss jumping into my car which is parked in the garage and driving directly to my destination. Living in NYC you have to strategically plan each stop and make sure that a subway goes there, you can walk there and you’re wearing the right clothing and shoes or that the cab is not too expensive.
It’s loud: Remember how I said it’s the city that never sleeps? Usually I appreciate that more than I dislike it, but sometimes when you’re tired or sick all of those people and all of those loud noises are just straight up annoying. It’s times like these where a car would come in handy!
There’s certainly pros and cons to living anywhere and I am SO happy and blessed to be living where I am. Also, I am someone who if I can’t solve a negative I find ways to combat or move past it. In this case, I do that by taking weekend trips to soak in nature, staying in my apartment on days I need quiet and being my toughest self when it comes to the whole selfish nonsense.
If anyone is on the fence about moving to NYC feel free to shoot me a message. I like to think I have a good sense of the pros and cons and can help you decide based on your priorities.