How to Stay Relaxed During a Big Move

moving.jpgWe have a big move coming up (cross-country). I realized this week that I am experiencing a low level of background stress as the move draws nearer.

So I decided to find resources (both internal and external) to help put me in the right frame of mind during the move. Hopefully these tips will help others who are facing a big move or even some other normal-highly-stressful life event such as a job change.

Acknowledge the stress.

This is what I did a couple of days ago. I wondered why I was stressed just doing normal activities, and it finally hit me that in addition to all of my normal duties, I am carrying out background thoughts related to the move.

Acknowledge why you are stressed in the first place.

This article points out some of the hidden sources of moving related stress.

Our homes provide security. They shelter us from the elements and from the outside world. When we make a move, we are giving up known levels of security and trading them for unknown security … It may take us weeks or months before we feel safe in the new environment.<>

Also,

“As we pack up our years of accumulated belongings, we are also forcing ourselves to review our lives. Although many of our possessions will trigger positive memories, some of them may trigger painful memories. We may find old photographs, mementos, letters, or clothing that remind us of losses. We must also make decisions about what to keep and what to discard. These discards can also represent losses as we leave our past lives behind.”

Getting What I Want (Instead of What I Don’t Want)

O.K., now I have figured out what I don’t want (stress). So how do I get to what I do want – a relaxed mind during the moving process, and a feeling of being secure in the knowledge that everything will go well and that I am safe?

Plan Ahead.

Most of the articles on this subject (staying relaxed during a move) emphasize planning ahead. Great advice … but most of the articles stop here.

Pace Yourself.

Some people emphasize pacing yourself in packing. This is great advice, as I generally wait to the last minute and am horrified to see the moving guys throwing my clothes in a box with a full trash can. So, if you are packing yourself then pace the packing. If the movers are packing (obviously interview a few companies and pick a reputable moving company), then in a relaxed manner over a number of weeks, start throwing things out that you don’t need and make sure that things are relatively tidy when they get there so that dusty papers and old, worn out clothes aren’t packed up.

Ship Your Car.

I always ship my car. I find the best car shipping company I can and then don’t worry about it. I fly to my new home and the car generally takes less than a week to get there.

Have fun with it!

Instead of worrying about how our house will “present” to buyers and worrying about finding a new house, I can have fun making our current house as beautiful as possible … while also experiencing the fun of finding a new home to buy. When I think of all the possibilities for our new home, I get excited! Life can be so mysterious and fun if you recognize where to find the fun in mystery.

Mind over matter.

I have to ask myself if much of this is really important in the big scheme of things. For example, we have decided to move my office into the guest room for selling purposes (“house staging”, as they call it). At first this stressed me out, but now I realize that it’s a short process (moving my office) and – more importantly, it is temporary and is likely to help us sell the house quickly and for more money.

Visualization

On the same note, I will use my mind to visualize a smooth move, a smooth house sale, and a wonderful new home in our new city … along with our wonderful lives. This last point is the most important.

That’s all for now. I’ll post more as the process unfolds.

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March 1, 2007. life, personal, Personal Development.

10 Comments

  1. Markrmorris2 replied:

    Having moved nearly thirty times in my thirty-five years I will say it is impossible not to feel the stress, that’s just life. The key to it is in not letting it overwhelm you. My Mom used to say, don’t worry, if you can do something about it, do it! If you can’t, why worry? Some things are out of our control and trying to contain them can be a special stress all its own.

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