By Cynthia Joseph
There’s a ton of unpacking to do and the place is a mess. But the pizza has finally arrived. It’s time to break out a cold one, flop down on the couch and exhale. You’ve done it…moved into your new home!
Breathing a sigh of relief, you can’t help but reflect on what you’ve been through over the past several days and weeks. Looking back will help identify what worked. Reflection also helps you figure out what could’ve gone better. Should you move again, you’ll know what to expect and maybe, be better prepared.
First, what prompted your move? Everyone’s circumstance is different. Some experience financial difficulties forcing them to vacate. Work transfers are often the reason for relocations. Others are empty-nesters who’ve discovered that a big house is too much to handle. Maybe illness or a medical condition interferes with the homeowner’s ability to maintain their property. Life changing situations require careful assessment. Take stock in how you and others involved feel about the move. Initiate an open discussion regarding expectations, wants and needs in your new home or community.
A change of address is more than filling up a truck with belongings. Moving is physically and emotionally draining, with deep sentimental undertones. It’s complicated! Moving is a demanding endeavor, requiring great attention to detail and patience. It induces undeniable stress. Stress is defined as non-specific responses of the body to any demand for change, which can result in numerous debilitating symptoms.
Leaving a home where a family has grown and evolved can be overwhelming, to say the least. If containers were large enough to box a lifetime of memories, there’d be no room on the truck for anything else.
Once the process of moving has started, it’s easy to sweep valid feelings under the rug. Especially if keeping emotions in check is the family norm. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking a schedule or deadline means little to no time to deal with the emotional issues that moving can elicit. And the physical effects, if left unchecked, only invite additional stress. These aspects should be considered and built into how you proceed before, during and after the move. Doing so should make your move easier, lessening stress levels; ensuring that relationships remain in tack.
Just remember, a little compassion during your move will benefit everyone involved. Bottom line, moving will be less tense if it’s handled it with care.
According to American Community Survey (ACS) the average American can expect to move 11.7 times during their lifetime. Author and communications consultant Cynthia Joseph can attest to that. Having moved herself and others, including seniors, small business offices and non-profits over the years, she understands the toll it can take physically, emotionally, mentally and financially. She is a proponent of early preparation and advocate of taking stock of how you, and others involved, feel throughout the moving process.