When I moved to the Bay Area I was never expecting to learn as much as I did. No, I wasn't expecting to learn the things that I learned. It's a huge difference (obviously) moving to a big city from a small town-- but here are a few of my biggest lessons.
1. It is okay to ask for help-- especially in a big, new place. My BRF (best roommate friend) taught me this lesson. You cannot do it all, and we are created in a relational way. Sometimes that means to ask people for a ride, to borrow their phone, and advice in general.
2. Community is vital. This one should be common sense, but in a world that is continuously transforming the way of communication, the gap between us grows wider. People are now exploring what cultivates community. It almost feels like we are attempting to bring the old sense of neighborhood back to our generation.
3. Make friends with people that are different from you. The Bay Area is the most culturally diverse city in the country. It is the best thing about the city, and it draws you away from yourself. Don't be scared to be around someone that seems weird to you, be their friend.
4. Find quiet in the middle of crazy. Even if it means sitting on a bench with your headphones in and eyes closed. It's okay to be quiet. There is power in stillness. Being an introvert is hard in such a loud place, but sometimes an introvert's "quiet" can be a strong statement. Even when you least expect it.
5. When walking in the tenderloin (or any 'bad neighborhood') alone at night, sing loudly to yourself. A co-worker gave me this advice, and I feel safe and sound whenever I use it. Also, it's really fun.