They say that 30 is the new 20, but across the board, it seems people agree: your 20’s and 30’s are a major time of self-discovery. New decades and major life transitions (like graduating from college) tend to put people in the mindset of a “new era” and they’re more likely to make significant life changes. Moving to new locations, beginning or ending relationships, changing careers, and finding a renewed sense of purposes seem to characterize “the 9-ers” — 19 and 29, for example. The generation of picking one job and sticking with it has passed.
What’s more? There are benefits, it seems, to moving often in your 20’s and early 30’s. So if you’re waffling between “pick a place and stick it out” or “YOLO, let’s get moving”, here are some reasons you might opt for the latter.
Because you’ll never know until you try
It can be tempting to stay near home or near your university because that’s where your existing connections reside. It’s nice to know how to get around, sure — but this is the time to get out of Dodge and try on some new cities and environments. Why?
Maybe you should be asking… why not? Expand your perspective, and moving for a change in the environment is one of the top reasons why people move. There is a whole wide world of opportunity out there and, unless you give it a go, you might never know that you love the Pacific Northwest. Or the buzz of Manhattan. Or hey, maybe the Swiss Alps. If you are young and have marketable skills, the world is your playground when it comes to moving in your 20’s.
Education only gets you so far: it’s all about connections
You might have already realized this, but just in case no one has told you: a diploma is important, but that piece of paper is only one small step along the path to your dream post-college job opportunity. Building connections is just as important in today’s job market, and moving multiple times can be a great way to do that. Each job can be an opportunity to gather new skills, new connections, and new people to recommend you for your next step on the career ladder. The best cities to move to in your 20’s are the places that offer ample opportunity in your field.
Make your significant career pivots early on
Later in life, many people report that they never could have predicted how their career path turned out — because somewhere along the line, a wonderful surprise made them pivot unexpectedly. Don’t wait around! Moving in your 30’s can set you up to be in just the right place at the right time for the career opportunity you didn’t know you wanted. Sure, you majored in marketing. But have you ever considered… the music industry? No turn needs to be permanent, so if it interests you, give it a try.
Build your capacity for risk-taking
Moving to a new city alone in your 20’s can feel beyond daunting, but it can also be the most empowering experience of your life so far. From figuring out how to get around to making new friends, you are in complete control of how you set up your new life and everything is up to you. Risky? Sure. But taking healthy risks like a big move can be a great way to build your capacity and confidence for the future.
Never underestimate the power of a fresh start
We all want to reinvent ourselves now and then, and completely switching up your living scenario can be the perfect approach. If you’re looking for the best places to move in your 30’s, consider selling off most of your stuff and taking a road trip around the country to get a feel for some new places and communities. Commit to a minimalist lifestyle, or maybe go from country to city living or vice versa. Move abroad and completely immerse yourself in a new culture. In your 30’s, you’re far too young to get stuck in a rut for the rest of your life. If you have the flexibility to take a leap, start over at least a few times. You’ll learn a lot about yourself, your desires, your needs, and what’s really important to you.
And that will guide you well into the rest of your life.
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