In addition to the vertigo before the prospect of starting a professional career, relocation is sometimes part of the equation. Taking the high rates of youth unemployment in Spain into account, relocation over professional reasons has become an option for youngsters in the last few years. That is reflected in the Labour and Geographical Mobility Statistics report by the Spanish National Institute of Statistics (INE), published in September 2018. Specifically, 6% of unemployed individuals between 16 and 34 years of age would have been relocating over the last 12 months. When we move from city to city for our first job, questions about how to adapt to a new place arise.

Young people are aware of the challenges they may stumble upon when seeking their first job, and 53% of them consider moving abroad as something quite or very unlikely to happen. This is suggested by the study “Youth and employment, from their own view” conducted by the Reina Sofía Youth and Adolescence Centre in 2016. In it, 24% of respondents sees migrating as a good alternative provided there’s a good opportunity, and 32% would do it out of necessity.

If you’re reading this, and with these numbers in hand, it’s quite likely that you are one of those recent graduates who have had to leave home in order to take the first step in their professional career in a new city. If that’s the case, or you’re considering it, here are some useful tips to adapt yourself to the new situation after the move:

Attitude is key

The most important thing is to take it easy, put setbacks that may arise in perspective and not to come down. It’s very likely that the whole process is far from being a bed of roses and that some drawbacks may appear in the way, or simply that you just begin to miss your previous life. That’s natural. Don’t let negative thoughts or pessimism engulf you. Keep in mind that relocation due to a first job is an opportunity to develop your career and that a world of possibilities is opening up before you.

Do not rush to find permanent accommodation

Don’t rush when looking for a place to stay permanently. Make use of digital platforms to rent a room during the first few weeks and thereby you’ll be able to be familiar with the city before choosing one place or another.

Find out about what each neighbourhood has to offer regarding supermarkets, leisure activities or sport facilities. To that end, there’s nothing better than to dedicate some time after work or during the weekend to take a stroll around. Besides, you may find rental ads on the front door of buildings –your dream flat may not be listed on the internet and you may find it the old-fashioned way.

Take into consideration that a great option when moving to a new city is to share a flat. That will help you know new people and go through the experience accompanied. 

Go out and explore

Internet is your ally, but don’t limit yourself to a screen. It’s very likely that Google Maps becomes one of your go-to apps whenever you need to arrive to a certain location or to know where’s the nearest pharmacy, library or grocery store.

But nothing better to discover a city than walking around and paying attention to everything it has to offer. Maybe you find a cozy café, a bookshop or a facility where to play your favourite sport. Get used to note down in your phone the address of those places of interest, so that you can come back again.

Take advantage of your hobbies

Even if you have moved to a new city to start your first job, it is very important that you make the most of your hobbies. If you do any sport, find a group you can run, play football or basketball with. Same applies for other hobbies you may have. Search for clubs or associations on the internet and do not hesitate to reach out to them. It’s a great way to know new people.

Friends need dedication

Leave shyness aside and don’t be afraid to ask your colleagues for advice. Everybody understands how overwhelming arriving to a new city can be. It might have been the case for some of them, and their experiences might be of great help for you.

If you’re proposed a plan, don’t hesitate to join in, even if at first you don’t think you’re going to enjoy it so much. You never know who you will meet, or if the proposer will end up being a friend.

Likewise, you should become the proposer yourself. Be proactive. Don’t wait for people to invite you to have a drink, go to the gym or cinema.

Virtue is the happy medium

During your first days, try to find a balance between standing out and being unnoticed. Here are some tips to achieve that:

  1. Pay attention to group dynamics.
  2. Put some effort on learning the names of other team members and their role in the company.
  3. Try to find a mentor who solves your doubts and helps you catch up with everything you need to know about the working atmosphere.
  4. Have lunch together with your colleagues; this way you’ll fit in quicker.

Sources: INE, Centro Reina Sofía sobre Adolescencia y Juventud and Lifehacker.

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