By Lauren Saxe
They say, “It takes a village,” and that statement certainly rings true for anyone living in New York City. Unlike what you’ve seen in the movies, moving to NYC is stressful; it’s not always glamorous and in a city of eight million people, it’s easy to feel a little lost. That’s where your community comes in: people there to help you live your best life. The media industry is a hustle and that daily grind makes the path to success a group effort led by Y-O-U. “Having a support system is so important, but building it isn’t easy — it takes work!” says Tiffany Yannetta, Shopping Director at Racked. Here’s your recruitment roster.
A STELLAR BOSS: Almost every person in the media industry has had a boss or several bosses who were pivotal to their success. They can be there to provide valuable career and life advice. “I’ve been really blessed to have amazing and smart women to work for,” says Lindsay Peoples Wagner, Fashion Market Editor at The Cut/New York Magazine. “My current bosses, Stella Bugbee and Rebecca Ramsey, have been incredible mentors and I cherish the conversations that we’ve had about things women are dealing with all over the world.”
CHILDHOOD ROLE MODELS: This could be Mom and Dad, a high school teacher or another adult who had a really positive impact on your life as a kid. These people have seen you through those awkward teen years and stayed by your side as a continual source of inspiration. “My parents are constantly being so supportive and are always there to talk me through anything that’s happening,” says Victoria Tomkinson, Social Media Editor at Refinery29. “They encourage me to make the best moves for myself and my career.” Millennials get a bad rap for relying on their parents for advice, but more often than not, your parents have been through challenges like a career move or a broken fridge before, so it’s OK to count on their support.
A BEST FRIEND: Lots of college grads move to the city and think they know absolutely no one, but odds are a friend or a friend of a friend knows someone who lives in New York that you can connect with. If not, try an app, join a club or organization, or hit the town to meet new people. With over eight million people roaming around the city, the possibilities are endless. Plus, you’re going to need that BFF to vent to about daily subway delays.
A SUPPORTIVE ROOMMATE: At the end of the day there’s nothing we want more than to kick our shoes off and cozy in at home. When you have someone to do that with, it’s even better. Jenna Milliner-Waddell, a digital producer at BRIDES, has super-supportive roomies who also work in media, giving her the opportunity to de-stress with people who are in the same boat. “Not only is it great to come home to friends, but coming home to all media people who just get it is so comforting,” she says. “Plus, one of my roommates totally got me my current job, which is the icing on the cake.”
A WORK BFF: “Work wife” isn’t just a Millennial buzzword, it’s a necessity, too. “Everyone needs an office BFF or work wife (or work hubby!),” says Laura Cohen, Senior Social Editor at Elite Daily. “Even if you totally love your job, having someone who you can just be real with and talk about things besides your work responsibilities is so comforting, especially when you’re stressed and need to take a minute to breathe.” Sometimes people who have similar goals can make the best, most relatable friends. Cohen has walked away from every job with lifelong friends — something you don’t always expect to get at work.
But this isn’t just about you: “You can’t just lean on your support system; you have to be there to prop them up, too,”says Yannetta. And holding on to your lifelong connections from back home can be just as vital as making new friends in your new home. “My friends and family who aren’t in the city always have my back and have known me forever, so they always know what’s best for me. Things get so insane so often. It’s huge to have a voice of reason,” says Tomkinson.