I grew up in a single-parent household with three other siblings, and for at least ten years of my life, we were moving to a different house. At times we could stay a little longer, but there were also times when we would only be there for a couple of months before we would eventually move again. I remember how draining it was for me to be moving constantly, and having to readjust to the neighborhood again, getting to know other people, making new friends. It was a difficult time in my life with all the change that was going on.
Honestly, this pandemic situation caused me a lot of mixed emotions. First, it stopped me from getting outside and doing the things I usually do. It made me deal with a jobless situation and face the uncertainty without anything on my hand. Second, it took away my sense of security because I was not sure how to deal with my financial and social issues. Third, it gave me stress and anxiety, which is, by the way, is the worst of all because I live alone in my flat. Now I think about all the things in my life. I knew the fear I have caused an emotional and mental dysfunction. So how am I surviving despite all this stuff?
Do What You Can Do
One thing I learned from the experience of living alone in my flat is always to use the things that are available. Never wished to have something that is not there because it would only make you feel less focused on finding a solution to a problem. Let say, for example, you need to have food on the table. With regards to convenience, you would want to have your food delivered to you by someone from the outside since you are on lockdown. But why not make your meal? That way, you can avoid exposing yourself from the virus because you might never know if that person in your doorstep is a carrier of the infection or not. As for me, I never relied on food deliveries because I also want to secure the other person’s health in some ways.
Stay Motivated Even Though You’re Alone
It is always a struggle for a lot of people to be alone. It causes sadness and emptiness that somehow leads to isolation. Honestly, I was there. I experienced the entire emotional dilemma that I know I wasn’t supposed to have. But as I viewed myself in this pandemic situation, I thought that I only have myself in this battle. Thus, I have to get motivated. So every time I woke up in the morning, I started my day with a smile. And even though I sometimes felt that life is unfair, I knew I have to stick to what is more important. That is to stay focused, healthy, and alive. But note, it took me a couple of weeks to finally come to my senses and think about that. So I guess it is never that easy.
Take Each Moment To Be Thankful For Everything
The problem with most individuals is that they do not often like to compromise. Some are insensitive to understand that there are things they cannot control. With that, they filled their lives with complaints and regrets. But as for me, I liked how I spent time alone with myself. Honestly, this pandemic situation made me realize I am more than what I think I am. I became aware of the people surrounding me, and I saw their significance in my life. I became conscious of the things I can do physically, mentally, and emotionally. Somehow, it made me think that even though I am alone right now, there is nothing much I should worry about as long as I had my overall balance.
Well, despite the uncertainties of this Coronavirus situation, I can say that I appreciate the way I handled myself. Again, it was never easy, and I struggled a lot. However, those struggles I experienced were not enough to make me quit living. And with a positive mindset that I inserted on my head, I survived my home quarantine experience.
The 2017 Migration Conference tackles how the changes in our constantly shifting world move people away from their homeland to foreign lands surrounded by a different society. Millions of people travel miles looking for a new home as circumstances force them to migrate.
Different people move houses for various reasons. Some simply want a change of scenery. Meanwhile, for some nations and their people, they have no choice but to flee as their lives are threatened by war, violence, and unrest in their very homeland. They are forced to migrate to other countries hoping for a better life. However, multiple issues may arise from this:
Safety In A Foreign Land
Escaping from violence only to run into another hostile and discriminating community is a collective experience and problem for immigrants. Many societies are aggressive toward them, and they are often seen as threats and outsiders who do not belong. Immigrants often get threats to their safety when they are merely searching for a place to live in peace.
No man is an island. We all live in a society with different cultures and practices, and we tend to conform to these norms to fit in. Perhaps as a response to the threats they receive, immigrants attempt to change to fit in better and belong in their new settlement. In turn, this leads to the last but equally pressing issue.
Each society, nation, and group in human civilization has its own cultural identity that makes it unique to others. For displaced people, spread far and wide, away from their homeland, and surrounded by foreign culture, it can be challenging to hold on to your nation’s dances, rituals, beliefs, and practices. Losing this may mean losing your connection with your homeland and for others, their selves.
With these problems faced by displaced nations, is it still possible to find their home away from home? The world is vast and full of different people. Many are violent and discriminating; some are forceful and threatening. However, there are also plenty of open arms and welcoming smiles. Settling in a different country is filled with challenges, but it is not impossible. Be brave, move forward, and never forget who you are and your nation’s story.
I understand that not all people are like me who find complete happiness in the toxic and stressful parts of the city. But honestly, I like it that way. I respect that some individuals find it more relaxing and calm to live in rural areas. There are trees everywhere, and the sound of nature is very amusing. But for the likes of me, I can’t live being away from the busy streets for long.
I prefer to live and stay in an urban area because I do not like the feeling of being alone. Yes, there is stress and pressure in the city, but that is what makes it challenging. As much as I want to calm and keep my mental and emotional health intact, I appreciate the way how the city is making me susceptible to overall damage. That is because I can allow myself to think through things for the sake of physical, emotional, and mental survival. I can say that the toxicity of the city helps a lot in creating an adaptive personality that can withstand stress and anxiety.
However, I fully understand that some of the elements of stress in the city do not contribute to improving overall health. In unfortunate cases, even if the goal is to become mentally and emotionally healthy, the city’s toxicities cause more damage than benefits. But regardless of those possibilities, I prefer the city because of the help I can get. Yes, in every instance of emotional and mental pressure, the city allows me to seek aid. Whether it is a professional or merely a friendly one, I can quickly get that.
The city can never promise me anything. It can never secure my improved mental and emotional health, as well. But one great thing about living in it is the growth and development of my interpersonal aspects. It allows me to experience interaction, solidarity, love, affection, and social connection. There is room for improvement and commitment. Yes, these things can never ensure a great combination of enhanced skills too. But the idea of knowing and understanding myself through the pressure of fixing my interpersonal aspects, the city elements can become a great help to that.
The city is not at all peace-friendly. A lot of times, it creates and triggers more drama. It causes too much mental and emotional instability that instantly makes me weak and vulnerable. But even if that is the case, the city allows me to become a better version of myself. I get to experience a lot of hardships, struggles, and negative vibes, which makes me more dedicated to things I want to achieve. The city offers opportunities that help in building not only my character but taking my life views to a whole new different level.
Not all people will agree with my beliefs about living in the city. Some people will never understand my enthusiast for keeping city life. But I don’t care. I still prefer to choose to live in an urban area regardless of the circumstances.
Modern cities are not like a typical environment where all of us feel the need to get involved. We know that for a fact, but it seems like there is nothing we can do. We know we like peace, but we agree with the noise. We hate toxicity and stress, but we try to learn to adapt to it by all means. So honestly, what are the issues that we have to solve in this particular scenario when we can alter the design of our physical, emotional, and mental health, and force it to stay in contact with city pressures?
Are Cities Making Us Sad?
Honestly, it does make us sad. That is because of the population density where there are tons of people cramming to fit into a tiny space. At first, we might not be able to notice that. But with all the people that can potentially surround each other, social stress can grow significantly. It can make us feel uneasy and hard to breathe. There are constant complaints and unsolicited opinions that can become an emotional and mental threat. People with different personalities clash, and that often results in the desire for isolation. In some unfortunate instances, too many people in a particular area lead to indecisive character build-up. So imagine how things can become a lot stressful for individuals who only want to have a better life?
If the cities are full of people, then expect it to have more pollution. Primarily, pollution comes in many forms. We experience the endless roar of combustion engines day and night. Chemicals are in the air from vehicle exhausts. There are even noises of different people everywhere and trash all over the streets. Honestly, you can name a lot of pollution for as many as you want. These things can entirely affect someone’s mood. With the mess we see daily, we can say that stuff in the cities is a bit too much. There are many adjustments that we have to deal with.
Can City Issues Cause Depression?
Apparently, yes! A lot of issues that concern city toxicity can cause anxiety and depression. The increased brain activity in forcing itself to comprehend, adjust, and compete with the environment is way too much to handle. Yes, there may be those people who can potentially escape the outcome of city toxicity. Unfortunately, there are those city dwellers that cannot handle it. With that, they become more prone to anxiety and depression, associated with agitation, exaggeration, and exhaustion.
Honestly, we, humans do not entirely understand how social interaction and adaptation means. We only know we need to engage with different individuals for survival. That is, regardless of the space we are at seems compressed a little. It is a mechanism that we understand and believe to be the way for us to survive. But with the reality of stress and pressure we get from the city’s overall demanding ways, there is this sense that it is sometimes not worth our mental and emotional health.
When you try and navigate the city and deal with its rush and business, there are lots of internal thoughts that could go in your head. That is where you experience stress at a different level. With all the toxicity and pressure from a single goal, such as surviving and breaking through, the process of keeping up with the city’s way of life is sometimes exhausting. That is the reason why you have to follow simple guidelines that will help you manage and deal with stress in the city.
New research published a few weeks ago in the journal Nature shows that the brains of city and country folk respond differently to stress. Specifically, when put in a stressful situation, those who either grew up in the city or currently reside in heavily populated areas showed increased activation in areas of the brain responsible for processing negative emotions relative to folks in less populated areas. — Sian Beilock Ph.D.
Learn To Adapt
The city is a busy area where peace and quietness are seldom. If you choose to stick around to the nature of the environment, you have to learn to adapt. There is no way you can make people stop doing what they regularly do. You cannot silence the children on the street, or even stop vehicles from honking. One better way to manage all those things that makes you feel uneasy is by adapting to it. Learning to adjust does not mean you have to contribute to the stress also. Instead, changing means, you have to find better ways to resolve things without throwing a single complaint.
Cognition in its many forms is an evolutionary trait that develops complexity when it provides an advantage. — John M. Marzluff Ph.D.
Find Your Fortress
If the city is where your heart belongs, then you sure know where your fortress is at. One thing that enables you to fight city stress is finding the right spot that allows you to appreciate the busy streets. If in case it is your apartment, then looking at the people crossing down the streets will give you pleasure. If it is the bars, then hanging out with friends and co-workers might be a great moment. If in case it is your job, then being able to do your task can become worry-free with or without you on the field. Finding your fortress in the city allows you to distress yourself with the help of focus and appreciation.
Allow Time For Yourself
Even if the city can become one of the most toxic places on Earth that throw stress and pressure, it can also become an area for improvement. Stress in the city is everywhere, and one thing that can make you handle those pressures is by allowing some time for yourself. Meaning, you need to break free even once in a while. Yes, responsibilities matter, and priorities are highly in demand. But once you manage to allow time for yourself, you will be able to refresh everything and make a better start. From that, things will become different and a lot easier.
Try To Ignore
Well, the stress in the city is quite exhausting. With all the damage it can cause to emotional and mental health, everything negative about it leads to an unpleasant ending. However, the best practical way to deal with all those pressure is by ignoring it. Meaning, you have to ignore stress in a way that you will still make use of your time productively. Therefore, those little things that don’t matter should never matter at all.
Surviving stress in the city is quite hard to do. But once you get a hold of the techniques of how to do it, things can run smoothly.
Your love for nature, silence, and peace is something that you should not always set aside. Honestly, it is a good thing because you can get to feel the serenity in an area where only your well-being matters. However, as much as you want to live in a small town that often does not have toxicity, the life there is limited. With that, the urban places take some of the credits. Yes, it is nice to stay in the countryside. However, there are perks in living in cities as well.
One thing that the city allows you to have is, of course, a fresh start. It is where you receive chances of getting the right career. Though there are cases that the city may not give it all to you due to the competitions you would have to undergo, the possibility is endless. The city offers a wide range of opportunities that allows you to build your skills. With that, you will have the option to do more things that you never thought you could do. Every struggle in the city is different, but everything about it focuses on learning and discovery.
The city offers a comfortable way of living. There are transportations everywhere that allow you to travel to different destinations. There’s the subway, taxis, and buses. There are stores available everywhere, as well. It contains almost all the things you need, and you can get it without a hassle. Aside from that, food, shelter, and other stuff necessary to your daily living come at reasonable prices. There is less hassle of searching for things you need when you live in the city.
Reaching new heights is possible when you are living in the city. There is an excellent chance of meeting people who are beneficial to your network’s growth. You can develop your connections by staying close to professional individuals who can significantly impact your career decisions and life. These people can promise you more financial stability. In fortunate instances, most people in the city offer opportunities that are beneficial not only to your job but significantly impact your social strength as well.
When it comes to self-development, the best thing that the city can offer is discoveries and learning. Yes, sometimes the opportunities are limited only to what you can do as of the moment. However, the more you engage in the city’s way of living, you will feel more energized and alive. You get to think about responsibilities often disguise as stress. You can get to experience different jobs, and get to meet different people. You can also get the chance to discover your talents and skills that you never once thought you have.
Living in the city has always had its ups and downs. But when the focus is career growth and development, self-improvement, and social strength, it becomes the right place for that. The city will continuously allow opportunities and learning, and that is something you don’t usually find in towns.
I have been working and visiting my therapist in the city for many years now and going home to the countryside through a ferry every day. That is enough for me to realize that country life doesn’t suit everyone. When I ride the ferry, I overhear one or two fellow commuters who complain about their ride, or perhaps about the people who log on their mountains, or the weather, or whatnot. And I think to myself, “What did you think when you moved to the country? The ferry is the only transport system to and from the city, the countryside has always been a source of wood for a lot of people, and it almost always rains where we live.”
Well, I think that moving to the country takes preparation, especially if you were living in an urban area where traffic is real, but you can buy whatever you want in any store you pass by. You need to be honest with yourself and talk it out with your family. Is the countryside really for you?
Think about these things before deciding to move to the country and giving up your urban lifestyle.
- Source Of Funds. Do you know what you will be doing for income? If you need to commute to and from your job, how much would it cost? You may plan on working part-time initially so that you can help your family adjust to the situation at your new home. So what else can you do to bring in more money for them? Are you finally pushing you with your online business? This is a crucial matter because when you don’t have enough money for you and the entire family, things will go crashing down. But you’re lucky if you have properties in the area, or if you’re already wealthy!
- Home-based Job. If you have an existing home-based job, it would be great if you can designate a small private space for you in your new home. But what about the Internet connection? You’ve been so used to high-speed Internet service in your urban home but now that you’re in your rural home, don’t expect too much. Choose from the few Internet company options and read reviews.
- Public Transport. Is your property close to your workplace? If it’s not, then is the cost bigger when you commute or if you purchase a small car? If you’re working in the city (like I do), you’ll need to wake up extra early for self-care, a 45-minute ferry ride, and an hour-long ride in a bus to my office. I’ve been in this routine for quite some time now, and it is exhausting. It’s why I have decided to leave my job, check out online therapy for my treatments, and work from home as a writer and editor.
- Hospital Or Emergency Services. This is particularly important for families whose parents or kids have medical conditions, such as asthma, diabetes, heart illnesses, or anything of the like. If you need regular medical care, make sure that your home is not very far from a hospital. Think about how long an ambulance can reach you when there is an emergency. When your son burns his hands in the fireplace or your daughter’s asthma occurs, you’ll want so much for medical help to be close by.
- Type Of Personality. Are you someone who loves peace and quiet? Or are you the type who can’t end the week without some party and noise? Because if you do, you’ll find rural living a bore. Living in the woods was not my kind of thing when my family and I came here, but it’s a good thing I got used to it and came to love the crackle of the wood and wonderful sound of crickets calling us for dinner. Of course, you can have your family and friends over, but not always. They have lives too. Think about it.
- Home Location. Where is your desired property located? Is it on top of the hills or is it near a river? Do read about the history of your property, as there may have been a long line of floods that happened. Better yet, no matter where your prospective home would be, check out the insurance costs and decide if you are willing to pay for it, or if it’s worth the cost. Weigh the hazards, and if they outweigh the advantages, you might as well choose another property for you and your family’s safety.
I’m sure there are more questions you want to ask yourself before you decide to change your lifestyle and your life. These few things will help you gain some understanding and clarity about whether or not rural living is for you. If it’s yes, then you’ll find the countryside awesome. If not, then you thank yourself for contemplating ahead before jumping into years of headache and stress.
There is no need to ask a psychologist to explain why many people dream of living in New York. The Big Apple serves as a host to Broadway musicals and a variety of multinational companies, after all. No matter what skills you have, you can find a suitable job. It is a sweet bonus as well that many celebrities claim the city as their home, and so you might bump into a singer or movie star from time to time.
Nevertheless, if you are used to living comfortably and sleeping in a spacious bedroom in a big house in the suburbs, you ought to know that the opposite might happen in NYC. That is especially true if you have only started working and do not have thousands of dollars to pay for even a one-bedroom apartment. Apart from that, there are ten more ideas you should consider before relocating.
Walking Is The “In” Thing
Once you are in New York, you do not have to worry about getting fat regardless of how much oily food you eat every single day. You will manage to burn all the calories off quickly, considering it is common for the people there to walk to and from the office. Though it may be tiring the first time you do it, the activity might not bother you a lot when you see that everyone else is doing the same thing.
Choosiness Is Not An Option
In case you may be dreaming of having a comfortable time when you get into this city, it is best to step away from la la land and realize that living there may not be easy at first. The price of things in NYC are higher than in small towns, you see. If you do not have a lot of money – or wealthy parents – to back you up, you cannot say no to staying in “daintily small” apartments or sharing it with a total stranger. Mind you; it is way better than living in the streets.
Before moving to New York, you should prepare yourself in dealing with bedbugs. The reason is that they are almost everywhere. From the subway trains to the express buses and sometimes even to the fabulous fashion establishments in the city, you might feel them bite you.
Buses Are Not Too Express
Speaking of buses, they do not exactly live up to their promise of providing express service. Aside from the fact that they usually get stuck in traffic, some passengers have to wait for at least an hour before one arrives at the stop.
Think Twice Before Bringing Plants
The Big Apple is considerably small when you think of the millions of people living in it; that’s why even an apartment that will pass as a storage unit in other places cost too much. Before you think of bringing pots of flowers to the metro, therefore, you should find out first whether there is space to space for them in your new home.
Alcoholic Beverages Are Expensive
If you came from a town where a huge bottle of booze consumes a significant portion of your budget, you might prefer to omit it from your life once you reside in the Big Apple. The cost of alcohol varies depending on the type of beverage, but you should know that the price of a glass of cocktail can be much as that of a bottle outside the metro.
Drive No More
The good thing about this city is you do not have to learn how to drive or buy a car. With the establishments close to each other, after all, you can walk or ride a bicycle to reach your destination. In case it is a bit far, you may take the train to get there faster.
Weird Happenings Are Normal
New York is the place where you can do whatever you want without the passersby batting an eye towards your direction. Thus, you should not be surprised to hear loud singing in the subway or see flash mobs erupt in the middle of the street. Like we have said earlier, weird is normal here.
Gyms Are Pricey
If you are a health buff, you may consider learning a few exercises at home before moving to New York City. There is undoubtedly a plethora of fitness centers you can fin in the metro, but the membership fee may range from 20 to 200 bucks. While it may not seem bad now, it may be better to spend that money on food and other bills later.
No Stars In The Sky
When you look up in the sky at night and see no stars, try not to assume that it’s because the rain’s about to come. The skyline is merely covered with smog, no thanks to the gases that the cars emit in New York. If you want to stargaze, you might have to look for a spot out of town.
Assuming you still wish to move to NYC after knowing the scenarios you might encounter there, we can only hope that you will be able to realize your dreams in the Big Apple sooner than later.
For young professionals and new couples who want to start a family but have barely begun earning money, buying a house is still out of the equation. For one, their budget may only be enough to afford a one-bedroom apartment. If they are staying at the heart of a vast city, they might need to make do with a studio-type place. After all, the price of the latter tends to be as much as a monthly amortization for a home you can own outside the metro more often than not.
Nonetheless, you don’t have to let go of your dreams to be able to live in a comfortable house. That can come once you already have investments and savings. For the meantime, it will be best to make your small unit as homey as possible.
Here are the five essential tips you should know when designing an apartment.
1. It Has To Be Practical
Before you buy the items that you wish to style the place with, you first have to have a realistic view of the things you may or may not need. For instance, will there be room for a large flower pot? If getting one entails that you’ll have a less walking area, it will be wise to cross that on your list. Should you buy wall shelves instead of a center table? That will be an excellent idea since you can make use of your vertical space efficiently.
You ought to show practicality from the moment you think of purchasing appliances and furniture. You see, the fewer stuff you have in the apartment, the more it won’t feel too cramped.
2. Use Light Shades Everywhere
When it comes to designing a house, it is common these days to find black, red, and other dark colors dominating everything. Sometimes they remain monotonous; other times, they get paired with pops of color.
The thing is, this trend is merely advisable to sizeable homes. Considering you live in a tiny apartment, these shades will not work at all. Instead of giving off a spacious vibe, a mix of a black couch, red paintings, and plum-colored curtains will cause your unit to look extra small. That might eventually make you develop claustrophobia.
What you need, therefore, are furniture and décor with light shades. You may add dark-colored items in the apartment too, but ensure that they will remain as accents only.
3. Get Slim Furniture
With the assumption that it will just be you and a roommate living in the flat, it is recommendable to buy a small sofa for the living room. There are multifunctional desks as well that can become a work or dining table. As for the chairs, you may get foldable stools or even a plush rug on the floor to sit on.
The reason why all your furniture should be slim is that you don’t have a lot of space in your unit. If you try to put a real dining set there along with a bed, a big set of drawers, and a couch, you might bump on the fixtures at every turn. Worse, you might have to step on them to go from one part of the apartment to the other.
4. Add Mirrors Wherever You Can
Mirrors come in different styles these days, have you noticed? They are not merely added on vanity tables or dressers or top of bathroom sinks for grooming purposes. There are already walls that are covered with mirrors that expand from floor to ceiling and side to side too.
That is quite advantageous for the individuals who move into tiny apartments, frankly speaking. When you have a lot of mirrors in the unit, it can make your space seem roomier than it genuinely is.
5. Ensure That The Flat Looks Pretty
Even though we have already recognized the importance of having small and light-colored furniture, it does not mean that you have to get stuck not-so-pleasing decorations. There are a lot of options in the market that are fit for a small apartment, and they look as amazing as what you see in large houses.
For instance, if you possess a green thumb, but you can’t have a garden, you may buy hanging indoor plants that can serve as a divider. In case your place is too small to have a bed and a couch, it is cool to get a pull-out or sofa bed. You should try your hand at customizing items that will fit your apartment’s aesthetics as well.
To Sum Things Up
While it is everyone’s dream to be able to live in a spacious unit, a lot of millennials or new families tend to go through a phase wherein a 30-square-meter flat is all you can afford. It’s okay, especially if you are only starting to realize your dreams. What will always matter is that you have a roof over your head and there are ways to maximize the little space that you own.