This morning i was reminded of the fact that this day, 2 years ago, i was on a train with my (3) packed bags on my way to Gothenburg. Ready to start a new life.
So let’s backtrack for those who haven’t followed my previous blog or my life story.
At the end of high school, 2015, i was extremely stressed which led me falling back into depression and struggling with alot of anxiety. I struggled with depression and anxiety (again) for about 1-1,5 years until summer 2016 when i realised i needed to make a change, and i made more than one change which i will get into later.
I had moved city before and lived on my own during spring 2016, but that had been a bit of a disaster for my mental health, and if anything it just made me worse. After moving home again, after my school term was over i realised i needed to make a change. I couldn’t keep feeling and struggling the way i was. I had no life motivation and just tried to fake a smile.
I applied for school in Gothenburg, hoping to get into 1 of the 2 programs i had applied to. I was extremely nervous thinking, 1) what if i don’t get in, 2) what if i do get in and don’t find anywhere to live, 3) what if i get worse and sicker if i move, 4) what if i don’t make friends if i move… (Because in my previous uni i had been very lonely and hadn’t made any friends.
I spent almost the whole summer 2016 working which was very beneficial for my health, as i felt like i had something to do and it got me out of the house almost everyday. But at the same time i worked LONG hours and couldn’t say no to work, so i think i worked 17 days in a row, or something like that. So it was also mentally and physically tiring.
At the same time, i had made the choice to go vegan spring 2016. I ended my relationship with my boyfriend at the time. I stopped taking birth control (which i think was one of the factors making my depression worse… just speculation though). I began taking different herbal medication for my depression, anxiety and sleep problems. (Note, i believe you should talk to a doctor and make your own decision whether you want to take anti-depressant and anxiety pills, try herbal medication or take no pills at all. Each to their own.) And finally the end of summer i moved city.
I feel like a completely new person compared to who i was back then. I still struggle with anxiety time to time and i have had my moments where i have been very sad, low and not had any life motivation. But it has never been as long lasting or as deep as it was back then.
In 2 years i have moved housing 5 times. I am glad to finally have my own place after 1,5 years… but it is also good to live with others and moving around meant that i got to see alot of the city i live in. So i choose to see the positive, even if i didn’t always feel positive when trying to find somewhere to live.
I have finished 4 terms, i.e 66% of my program and only have one year left. However i think i will continue studying and maybe trying to work part time with something health and nutrition related.
I have stepped outside of my comfort zone alot more. When you move to a new city you have to do things that scare you. Trying to make new friends, meeting new people, even trying to find a new gym and going to new places can be scary at first.
I feel like i have become alot stronger mentally and grown alot more. A little less insecure, even if i still struggle with insecurity and self esteem… i am trying to improve it!
My blog and blogging has changed alot, hahah.
It feels like each year that passes i say that i feel more balanced, but it is true. It is like with each year that passes and each year i get older i get more mature and more balanced. Small things that once bothered me don’t matter as much. I find more balance in different areas of my life. Of course, when school starts again i might not say the same thing….
Moving was one of the best decisions i have made in my life, even if there have been ups and downs.
I thought i would share some tips/things i have learnt from moving the past 2 years:
- You might not feel ready to move, and that is ok. But you have to be honest to yourself if you think you can manage it. This is especially for those suffering with mental illness such as eating disorders or depression. Be honest with yourself… will you be able to manage living away from home, being more independent and still making choices that will help you recover? Because the illness will want you to move away from home just so that you can get sicker and follow all your routines/sick habits and not be disturbed. So be honest if moving away from home/to another city or country, would be helpful or if you should wait.
- Try to make friends from the get-go. This is easier if you move to a city to study, it may be harder if you just move to a new city/country to try to find work or just for the experience. But i regret not being more proactive trying to make friends and socialize in the beginning…. i didn’t go to all the activities for the new uni students, so i could have missed out on meeting people.
- Join groups or activities to try to find friends or people with the same interests.
- Walk/cycle around the city/where you live. It is much easier to see new places, and put together the locations/pieces and locate yourself if you walk/run/cycle around! Maybe walk around a new place one day each weekend! You might find small cafes you love or new locations you love!
- Make connections and facebook friends! It was through facebook connections that i got all the living places i have lived at (apartment from where i live now, as that is through a student housing queue).
- Which brings me to…. if you are moving to a city to study, sign up for all the housing queues! And don’t forget to pay the fee (i almost lost my housing queue for Stockholm because i forgot to pay one summer, haha. I think i have 5 years in the queue now though which is good! Though it can take alot longer in the queue to actually get an apartment.)
- Keep in contact with people and don’t isolate yourself. This is key if you live on your own. If you have housemates you will atleast be surrounded by other people. But if you live on your own, it can be a good idea to call friends or family, or someone atleast once a week!
- If things don’t work out… whether it’s financially, you can’t find anywhere to live, you don’t like what you are studying, you feel too lonely or you feel you can’t cope living away from home, then that is ok. It is ok to be honest with yourself and realise things didn’t work out… that doesn’t make you a failure. It makes you strong for listening to yourself and your intuition and realising that things didn’t work out. Maybe you just need more time or to move back home or move to another location, depending on why things didn’t work out. It is not a failure, remember that!!
So there are just some of my tips and things i have learnt/wanted to share with you.
*I think it is easy for me to move away from home/move to other places because i never really get attached to places or people. So i have it easy to just pack up and move. But also because i am so independant… which can be a negative thing because i never ask for help either, even if i am struggling. But i think when you are very independant and good at sorting things out yourself then it’s easier to pack up and move, compared to if you are very attached to places or people or always feel the need for family/comfort etc* (I do miss my dog alot, which i think is the worst thing about moving.)
If any of you have moved to another city or country to study/work/travel, i would love to know how it went/what you learnt/your experiences etc