I have spent the majority of my life living and working on the West Coast, I have a slightly unique perspective on why working and living NOT on a coast has its perks.

Interestingly, if you ask any Chicagoan or native of Illinois, they might argue Chicago is on a coast. This conclusion is likely based on the endless water activities happening on Lake Michigan and the electricity of the city during the summer months. I don’t think any Chicagoans are missing out on the coastal fun- in fact, they may have it better. The time difference is usually easy to navigate. Morning meetings are not (normally) more than an hour early- a luxury I did not have when working on Pacific Standard Time with clients who were on the East Coast.

Ironically, I believe one of the best parts of living in Chicago (and not on either coast) is how accessible the rest of the country has now become. While living in San Diego, trips and activities were limited to traveling up or down the California coast. A trip to New York was a daunting excursion involving a 5+ hour flight that required considerably more planning. Living away from the West Coast has now made trips to Wisconsin, Michigan, Tennessee, Ohio, Indiana, etc, easily accessible. Each location brings a chance to experience the uniqueness of the country and, most importantly, the opportunity to try many different types of food!

Exploring new places and cities has never been easier. Having experienced Chicago on and off for the past 5 years, I could not be happier NOT living on a coast.

Pooja Desai is a Senior Account Executive at HCB Health. Connect with Pooja on LinkedIn.