The Upsides and Downsides of Moving Away

We are huge advocates for getting out of your comfort zone and trying something new. One way to quickly get out of your comfort zone is to move to a completely new environment. A place where you don't see a familiar face, you don't know the best restaurants, and you don't know what will be your favorite pass time. Some people out there can't wait to move away. Its not scary for them. Maybe they never felt at "home" in their current town.  Then there are those individuals who have to move out of circumstance. This move may be difficult or exciting. It's all about perspective. Then there are those who are happy enough in their current situation but are just looking for a new experience.  Whatever the reason you may have for moving, here are a few of the upsides and downsides of our moving experience. Perhaps it will help you gain perspective and embrace change with open arms. 


1. You will get to know yourself on a deeper level. When we moved to Missoula we really didn't know anyone. This meant we had lots of time to hang out with just ourselves. When you are not crowded by other people and no one has a preconceived idea of who you are, you can really start to be your authentic self. You have lots of time to sit and think about your own shit. You can ask yourself questions like " What is it that really makes me happy?" "How do I want to spend my free time?" "What kind of person do I want to be?".  If you move with a partner you will get to know them on a deeper level as well. You get forced to deal with any issues you have as a couple. We have said before that a move can either make or breakup a couple. You begin to see if your ultimate life goals are in the same direction. We know our move helped us grow closer. It wasn't easy...because we had to go through some crap. But it was so worth it. 

2. You can make you own traditions. I use to get sad around Holiday times. All of our family and friends would be getting together and  we were alone in MT. After the 2nd year or so we started to make our own traditions. Each Christmas Eve we would head out and do a big day of cross country skiing. That evening we would eat a ginormous amounts of delicious food and watch Christmas movies and open some gifts. We would drink good beer and wine. We would totally relax and just enjoy each other. Other holidays we would spend with our neighbor Linda. Since we all enjoyed good food and beer it was a perfect union. She was a transplant as well. Actually one of the best Thanksgiving meals we ever had was at Linda's. It was Indian themed so instead of turkey we had chicken curry. All the other traditional sides were modified as well. It was amazing!!!

3. You can get out of your comfort zone and push your own boundaries. Since everything in a new town is well,  each day can be like a tiny adventure. I recommend googling things to do in your new area. Buy a map of wilderness areas. Talk to a local sporting/outdoor goods shop to see what trails/areas are fun. Rent some gear to see if you like a certain activity. Take a class. Join a club. Buy a book about the area. Embrace all that is new and watch and see how you become more connected to yourself. 

4. You get better at adulting. Oh how I hate "adulting". When you move to a new place where you really don't know anyone, you are forced to handle situations yourself. I would be a complete liar if I said we never had to call our parents for advice or that we never had to borrow money. We asked for help when we really needed it. Situations did arise that were difficult and expensive. Moving away forced us to be better in the area of adulting. We had to take care of things because nobody else was going to step in to do so.

DOWN sides

1. You will miss things. Although you may find your new surrounding amazing, you will miss things. I am not just talking about your favorite restaurant or BFF, there will be events that you wish you could be at but can't. We missed weddings, birthdays, holidays, parties and funerals of some of our closest friends and relatives. Tickets are expensive and MT is HUGE so driving takes forever. You only get so much paid vacation. Life isn't cheap. I cried many times over missing things. It sucks but it's reality. 

2.You lose a support system. Sure you can call and ask for guidance  but when you don't actually know anyone things can get hard. What if you get a flat tire? What if the heat goes out in your house? What if your car breaks down? What if you have a child and need daycare? What if you can't take off work and your child becomes ill? Not having a person to be there physically to help you can make life really difficult sometimes. In time you may meet someone. We got help from neighbors and co-workers.  It's not that you can't get by without the help. You can. It just takes a little more effort and a good sense of perspective. Thank goodness for the FREE bus system in Missoula! 

3.Regret. You may go through a period of time when you are missing your old life so bad that you regret your decision to move. I urge you to push past this and keep an open mind. It took me about  a year and a half to really start to figure stuff out. I would think "why did we leave our family and friends?" " We are broke and we didn't use to be..why are we doing this to ourselves?" If you spend too much time focusing on the past, the past is where you will stay. 


I hope these insights will help you feel your way through your decision  to move "away". I know it was the BEST decision we ever made. Life got hard sometimes, but the memories and lessons that came from our move were priceless.  There is also nothing wrong with staying put. If you feel the urge to move I encourage you to look at why. If you a running away from something it will probably follow you. Sit with your own crud and work it out. Trust your instincts and welcome change.  peace and love- xoxoxox




Mychal Lynn