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Columnists

From a Small Town to a Megacity: Is the American Dream Worth it?

October 7, 2022

What a privilege it is to be able to call the city of New York your home, a new home in which dreams will be made, and a whole new series of opportunities will kickstart.

People raised in a small country like Cyprus tend to follow narrow-minded ideologies, traditional values, and views which lead to life paths they are already familiar with. Breaking out of that mindset however to follow passions, desires, and goals, depending on the dreams of each individual comes with risks.

Taking the step to move to New York requires great confidence and ambition. It is the ideal destination to experience diversity, openness, and freedom of expression, but also the path to internal maturity. Witnessing the poverty and homelessness the city suffers from daily, it is easy to notice the urgent need for survival.

Street in Larnaca, Cyprus. (Photo by Hert Niks via Unsplash)

The idea of moving to a megacity to succeed doesn’t only come hand in hand with multiple risks but also with the possibility of failure. The American Dream is not like it used to be, meaning that even though there are an abundant of opportunities to grab, competition has risen, and more and more people are specialized in their industry of choice.

Living costs are higher, and the general standard of living has decreased in comparison to many years ago where the higher wage improved people’s lifestyle. Not only this, but foreigners tend to face other obstacles like trouble in obtaining a visa, therefore they are automatically a second if not third choice for employers.

Talent should not be denied by these factors, however – they should become a bridge to merge cultures from around the world and bring fresh perspectives into multiple industries.

New York City is the place for global talents to meet, who all seek a similar passion.

American flag. (Photo by Max Sulik via Unsplash)

The unfortunate part of the experience is the question as to why these people have to move to one particular place in the world in order to make their dreams come true.

A nation’s reputation should be defined by their traditions, customs, foods, music, and anything that has to do with culture – but this should not become a barrier to a person’s growth and come in the way of their success.

With Cyprus being such a small country, with narrow-minded ideologies and highly traditional views, finding less opportunity there is an obvious reality. There is no potential present as the area for growth tends to be small. Yet, this should not eliminate the fact that new ideas and concepts should be recognized in order for the potential to grow.

The Big Apple will always be considered the place to be in terms of opportunity. However, it’s important to note that if countries like Cyprus want to keep their individual treasures on their own playing field, they should become more accepting of the needs of their people. Being open to ideas and beliefs will allow people to feel part of their community at home, rather than leaving the country seeking freedom.

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