Why leaving the DC Metro area was the best decision I've ever made

Updated: Feb 1, 2019

Washington, DC, a place where everyone wants to visit and/or live. A place where you think you've really "made it" if you live/work there but for me, that couldn't be further from the reality of actually living there.

What the DC Metro area did for me

I moved to Fairfax, VA (roughly around 30 minutes outside of DC), in 2013. I moved there as naive as could be, without a care in the world to attend college at George Mason University. Little did I know moving there was going to be the most stressful, life changing 6 years of my life. I'm a firm believer that mindset really determines your happiness wherever you live and that you can truly be happy no matter where you are living as long as you have gratitude and the right mindset. However, for some reason I just couldn't focus while living in the DC area. For the 6 years I lived there I had amazing jobs including working for the Department of Defense, I attended a top ranked school, but I was completely miserable. Why?!

"One thing people don't realize about the DC Metro area is how toxic it truly is..."

What People Don't Realize about the DC Area

One thing people don't realize about the DC Metro area is how toxic it truly is. Like I said above, I'm a firm believer in mindset and gratitude for anywhere you live but I had a VERY tough time making and keeping friends there. Mind you, I'm an extremely sociable person and I make friends everywhere I go; however, the DC area is NOT for sensitive empaths. I felt very suffocated and trapped there because I could literally feel the toxicity in the air. The mindset there is go, go, go, no one takes time to breathe or relax and mental health issues are very prominent especially in the affluent areas. There is a LOT of narcissism, pretentiousness, and drugs...literally everywhere. Even the most innocent looking people did drugs there and trying to find friends there who don't drink or do drugs was nearly impossible. I've had this conversation with multiple people who still live or used to live in that area and they all completely agree. One friend who moved away before I did said, "you really grow when you leave that place," and I'm beginning to realize that.

You have the interns or people who work on the Hill and act like they're too good for anyone and then you have everyone else who's favorite first line is "so what do you do?" as in, what do you do for a living? Yes, that is the first question anyone and everyone asks you there and if they don't like your answer yes, they will straight up turn around and walk away from you. My best friend and I no longer live in the area but we both recently were talking about how miserable we became while living there and we turned into people that we really weren't because the energy there is extremely cold, uninviting, and jaded. You can feel it in the air.

I never changed who I was inside while living there, I more so became jaded and depressed. M