The Emotional Stress of Moving

For a lucky few, moving house is an emotion-free experience. This select group usually moves often and therefore moving house is almost a habit if anything. However, the for the vast majority, moving one’s home is almost an insurmountable project. For many of us, moving is not something we routinely do. In addition, the emotional stress of downsizing or dealing with a loved one’s estate is difficult to deal with. We often attach memories to items, making it hard to thrown them out, even though retaining them is no longer justifiable. It is impossible to eliminate these feelings. However, you can take steps to assist the process and reduce stress, and speed things up.

These include:

1.) Establish an inventory of the goods

It is often a slow process when sorting through your treasured goods. How often have you picked something up and been transported to the occasion – many years ago – when the particular item first registered in your memory or heart? While savouring the memories is sweet, it draws out the entire process and makes it harder. Saying goodbye becomes harder because it feels like you are saying goodbye to the memory. It is a good idea to make a photo inventory to help move this process along.

You can still take a trip down memory lane while making the inventory. In this context it may seem silly to have an inventory as you still go through the items. However, you will be sorting through the items without making any harsh decisions at that time. It is purely just to take photos of the goods. You will then use the inventory to make your tough decisions on what to keep or not. This way you are not with the item and are further removed to make the call.

2.) Ensure you have suitable packing materials and tools

Usually, your treasured goods are often small and fragile or require careful packing. It is important you properly prepare for the task of packing. In not doing so, you will cause significant delays when it comes to boxing up your goods. No one wants to throw a valuable antique into a box without bubble wrap! Make sure you have all the necessities to keep things moving on packing day.

Useful materials to assemble include packing boxes, tape, bubble wrap, butcher’s paper, tape guns, marker pens, inventory lists, and coloured tabs.

3.) “If it does not bring you joy”

According to Marie Kondo, it is important to separate those goods which provide you with important memories from those which give you joy. The former is for items that can live in your memory. You can hold onto the memory through a digital record, without providing physical storage space.  The latter group (those that give you joy) are things you will want to have within reach and touch. Separating these classes assists your decision making process. Our friends at Happy DIY Home have a great distillation of the KonMari method here.

4.) Sharing with siblings

Often, a single item provides the same cherished memories to a group of siblings. Clearly not everyone can have continuous possession of it. You can adopt a range of options to help in this instance. Firstly, a lottery process to determine who gets significant items. Secondly, establishing an online site where digital records of particular items and a note of their physical whereabouts). And thirdly, sharing the item with a rotating roster of possession. It is important to establish an approach for this problem It is one of the key stresses in the process of downsizing or clearing an estate.
All of the above steps will help you with your move. They will help reduce the stress involved and aid the decision making process. Often, expert assistance is also available to assist the entire project.