How to reduce stress during your move

It is generally accepted that moving is one of the most stressful experiences in life. From planning and packing to unpacking and getting settled, moving involves a lot of work in a (usually) very limited amount of time. Reduce your stress by following some of these hints:

There is a lot of work to do during a move, and you can reduce your stress by doing less of it. You can hire people to help with almost every part of the move; set your budget early so you know when you can let someone else do the job. From bringing boxes to pack your things in, to packing, driving the truck, unpacking and cleaning both residences, you can reduce stress during a move by doing less of the work yourself.

Ask for help
When there are things you can’t or don’t want to pay someone else to do, don’t be afraid to ask friends or family to help. They will probably be so glad that they’re not moving that they’ll be happy to help! Whether it’s a meal in the new place before you’ve unpacked your dishes, light cleaning or watching your kids while you pack, asking for help can make the work a lot easier.

Stay organized
Nothing makes stress worse than not knowing where to find something you need or when things need to happen. Keep a list of important dates and times and update it frequently. Keep a couple of boxes or suitcases nearby to pack things you will need immediately when you get to your new place, such as toiletries, clothes, seasonal clothing, electronics and chargers, and anything kids might need to help them sleep in a new place. Keep important documents like rental papers, mortgage documents or moving company contracts in an accessible place. Leave out some toiletries and just leave that last half roll of toilet paper for the next people!

When packing, make sure every box is labeled with the room it should go in when you get to the new location. It is also a good idea to make a short list on the outside of the box of what is inside; you may think you will remember, but you won’t! This labeling will help you unpack the most important boxes first so that you’re not missing important items.

Don’t worry
Try to reduce stress by allowing yourself to get things done gradually. If you can, give yourself plenty of time to get the packing done. If you label the boxes properly, you will know which ones can go in a spare room to be unpacked later, when you are more settled. Once the bedrooms are set up, and the kitchen is organized, give yourself a little time to get adjusted if you need it before trying to make everything perfect.

If you feel overwhelmed, you might want to make a list of everything that needs to get done, and then sort it from most to least urgent. You will feel encouraged as you make progress on your list. As you work your way down to some of the less urgent items, you may find that some of them don’t even seem very important anymore and can wait until you have more time.

Although moving is always stressful, you can make it seem easier by asking or paying others to help you, staying organized and not pressuring yourself to get everything done at once. And once you get there, be sure to enjoy your new home!