Choosing where to live as a post-grad is such a daunting task.
Should you move back home with your parents to save money for a bit? Should you teach abroad for a few years? Should you stay put in the same city where you went to college? Should you take a leap of faith and move to a new city where you literally have no contacts?
The options are endless, and they're f*cking scary. A lot of us believe that deciding where to live after college is essentially where we are choosing to plant our roots…but that’s not always the case, especially considering the mindset of our generation.
Did you know that more and more millennials are waiting to purchase homes and settle down? Until, like, their 30s? It’s true. We are a group of creative thinkers and travelers who want to soak up as much as possible before getting nice and cozy in one particular city. And, even if we do choose to “settle” somewhere after college…we could just as easily uproot and plant ourselves somewhere else not even 6 months after. As a whole, we have a “no strings attached” vibe going on when it comes to living life…and it seems to be working out in our favor.
So, the answer to where you should move as a young adult is…wherever the hell you want. Seriously. Take this time to do all of the crazy shit your heart desires. Move to Thailand and work as an English teacher. Teach surf lessons in Costa Rica. Be an au pair in France. Take a job in a random city you’ve never even been to. If you have the resources and are willing/able to make it happen, then why not?
Likewise, if you think it’s best to move back in with your parents to save some cash…do that! And don’t feel ashamed about it. We are all traveling down very different paths, and they are certainly not going to look the same. Each one is beautiful and unique and special…who is anyone to say what is right vs. wrong when it comes to this sort of stuff? No one, that's who.
Personally? I stayed put in the city where I attended college because that’s where I met my boyfriend, and his parents live here. It certainly wasn’t my original plan. Before I met him, I had two scenarios I would dream up in my head: one was moving to Europe to work at a cafe and write novels and the other (somewhat more realistic) scenario was moving to New York to make it as an editor/writer and eventually work for Vogue magazine. What can I say? A lot goes on in this curly-haired head of mine…I had big dreams. And I still do. They have simply shifted based on my location. I’m still writing (obviously)…I’ve made traveling a huge priority in my life to make up for not living abroad after college…and I still plan on writing for Vogue one day. Just watch ;) Hey Anna Wintour, call me!
I think it’s important to note that, fairly often, we do have to make big, life-changing decisions based on loved ones. For some…that means moving back to their hometown to be close to family. For me…that meant staying in Charleston, SC to be with my boyfriend and build a life together. We don't get to choose when we stumble into relationships that change our lives. And, if you feel that a person is special enough to change your plans for, then they must be a pretty big deal…ya know? It was an easy choice for me, and I have no regrets. I guess the most simple (and cliche) way to put it, is that you really should follow your heart when it comes to decisions like this. Of course your finances, job situation, cost of living, and so many other things will play a big part in making the decision of where to live…but you should always, always, always start with what your heart is telling you. Then, go from there.
The following 25 cities were ranked the ‘2017 Best Cities for Millennials in America’ based on the number of millennial residents, job opportunities, and access to bars, restaurants, and affordable housing. Ranking is based on data from the U.S. Census, FBI, BLS, and other sources.
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