The excitement of moving into your new place has been growing for weeks, but so has your anxiety. Moving to a new location brings with it plenty of opportunities, but also plenty of unknowns. Taking steps to minimize the stress of moving can help eliminate some of your worry, and also help you keep a clear head so you can experience this new adventure without a crisis thrown in the mix.
Remove it instead of moving it
One of the best things you can do is to get rid of stuff you don’t want to take with you. There is nothing more wasteful than packing something, moving it across town or across the country, and then unpacking it so it can take up space until you move again. Old clothes, books, gadgets, childhood toys, posters, the bike you never ride… all of those things will do nothing more than take up the limited space in your moving truck and then gather dust. Sell, donate, or dump any items that will not be of any benefit to you in your new home.
If you have a lot of junk that you are purging prior to the move, thoughtfully consider how you acquired it, why you still have it, and how to avoid accumulating new ‘junk’ in your new home. The growing trend towards minimalism is a great way to remove stress from all aspects of your life, not just the move. Make sure that the items you choose to surround yourself are useful to you, and that they add value to your life. Beginning your new journey with this mindset will allow you to reduce your spending on frivolous purchases, and will help keep your new home clean and clutter-free.
Learn to say “no”
If you’re just moving out on your own, and you don’t have a lot of your own furniture or appliances, it may be tempting to accept the hand-me-down linens and the old desk from your uncle’s basement. Before you know it, you’ll wind up with a home full of mismatched pieces of other people’s junk, after you just got rid of all of yours! Then you wind up reluctant to dispose of it because you feel obligated to appreciate someone’s kindness. Avoid this altogether by thanking the individual, and politely telling them that you really have no need for that particular utensil/end table/set of old curtains, and that it would be better off going with someone who will really use it.
Get it done before moving day
Ideally, when you wake up the day of your move, you should have a small duffel bag with a few changes of clothes and your toiletries available, and possibly your laptop and phone charger. Everything else should be boxed, labeled, and ready to load onto a truck. If you’re paying a moving company to pack for you, this is not as important, but if you’re renting a truck and utilizing the help of friends and family, don’t expect them to do this type of work for you. They should be used to help move large items and to carry boxes from a room to a truck, and then from a truck to a room. Asking them to help pack all of the shoes on the floor of your closet or all of the personal care items from your bathroom is a recipe for confusion, frustration, and resentment.
As soon as your bed is in your new bedroom, put some sheets on it and get everything you need for your first night sleep ready. Doesn’t matter if it’s noon and you still have hours to go, get it ready. Then make sure all of your bathroom essentials are where they need to be, and enough of the kitchen unpacked that you can find yourself some coffee in the morning. When things start to slow down and everyone leaves, you’re likely to lose your momentum and want to crash. Spending an hour looking for sheets and pillows is too much to have to handle when you’re dirty, stressed, and exhausted. If you have the essentials taken care of, the rest can wait for a day or two.
Keep in mind that keeping your stress level low is going to make the process much more enjoyable. Remember to plan ahead, and get as much done before the big day so that the moving and unpacking is as stress-free as possible.