Moving. That can bring up a range of emotions. For some, they look forward to the days of prep work and boxing and then unpacking everything into their wonderful new home. For others, the deep dread that word brings up may cause an inability to function. Wherever you land in the spectrum of extreme reactions to moving, know that YOU CAN DO THIS and with a little extra prep work, your stress should be minimal. Here are some of our favorite tips to tackle your moving process as seamlessly as possible.
- Embrace the chaos – Having a realistic view of how upset your schedules and homes will be for a few weeks (or months, depending on how quickly you are able to unpack once you get to the new spot) will help your sanity. Yes, there is going to be stress. Be sure to take care of your and your family’s needs as best as possible through this time. Nourishing meals, water, sleep, and kind words will go a long way when you’re all feeling a little unsettled.
- Give yourself enough time, and grace! Start early, work on little bits of packing or unpacking at a time and just know that the more time you give yourself to get things done, the better you will feel about not having to rush the job later. It’s impractical to think that moving can be completely stress free, but minimizing and handling the stress is completely possible if you keep chipping away diligently at the task at hand. The more you leave to the last minute, the more frantic you’ll probably feel so take that frantic aspect of moving away and you’ll be able to breathe a little easier.
- Just starting small is better than nothing – We’ve all probably heard the quote by Lao Tzu “ The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” Well, let’s rephrase this a bit to fit our need: “the moving of a thousand items begins with packing one box.” Keep this in mind when you walk into a room filled with items and begin to feel overwhelmed. One tip for starting small, would be to fill several boxes from a room with items that are rarely used. You may even chuckle when unpacking these, and realize you don’t actually need them at all! Better yet, just be ruthless with tidying your items before you move and give it away before it even gets into your moving box! Less stuff to move will certainly make the job smaller when unpacking too.
- Stay organized to stay sane – Organization is the biggest thing that can make your move less stressful. Label your boxes with what room they need to go to in your new house along with a quick list of what is in that box, that way you aren’t moving boxes more than once when you get there and you know what is in each box. Definitely pack “go bags” for each member of the family like you were traveling and needed changes of clothes, toiletries, shoes, coats, important documents, school things, etc. Keeping all of those in one place will really minimize stress and hassle. Pack the essential kitchen items last when leaving your old house and unpack them first when you get to the new place. This will help you avoid any “hangry” (hungry – angry) moments with family members!
- Hire professional movers – Depending on your budget for the move, this can be a really great option! Let the professionals come in and do what they do best! If you have extra in your budget, you can even have them pack your boxes for you. Even if the movers just handle transporting the boxes possessions from one house to the next, the biggest benefit for this is that then you can then have plenty of people to ask in your circle of friends to help you unpack when you get there! Whoever is helping you unpack and move, one great tip is to go to the new home’s kitchen beforehand and label drawers and cabinets with what items you want to be in there. That way you don’t have to rearrange everything in your kitchen when you finally get settled. It will all be in the spot you want it to be right from the beginning!
- Ask for help – Help can come in many different forms! Like mentioned before, don’t be shy about asking friends to help you come over and have a packing party or unpacking party! Grab some pizzas and drinks, turn up the tunes, and it can be a really fun time. Just be cautious that you ask people to help that actually will be helpful and won’t add to your stress. For food, give yourself permission to order take out several times while you’re in the midst of moving, use paper products for plates and utensils, and stock up on lots of quick and nourishing snacks to have on hand as well as water bottles to share with everyone helping you move! All of these are helpful things you could ask others to pick up on moving days so it’s one less facet of the moving process that would fall on your shoulders. Possibly ask to drop off your young kids at someone’s house for the day (or a couple days) so you can really focus your energy on the tasks at hand. Use your resources and you will be that less stressed.
- Prioritize sleep – This was already mentioned above, but it’s that important that it’s worth mentioning again. When you are rested, you will feel better and that’s all there is to it. Using these tips, it will help you to have the time in the middle of a big move to be able to sleep and not feel overwhelmed or extra stressed. You’ll be able to think clearer and more efficiently, and during moving you know your brain needs to be functioning well to make sure all the ducks are in a row!
Hopefully these few tips will give you the inspiration to have a less stressful and more enjoyable moving experience! Either way, when you’re moving, all of these tasks of weeding through items, boxing things up and unpacking have to happen, so you might as well enjoy the process along the way and have some fun! And when it’s all said and done, make sure to grab a cup of tea or your favorite beverage, sit down in your favorite chair in your new space, take a deep breath and just take it all in. The big work may be done and now it’s time to make this house your home with your family!