You’re in the process of choosing a new home and the excitement is heightened and you are visioning all of the new memories and life experiences that are going to be had in your new location, and then it hits you. Before you get to start experiencing the new life and opportunities that buying a new home offers, you have to move. It can hit you like a wave of stress and anxiety, but don’t let it. Moving can be a fun transition if done the right way.
Hold on to the excitement of the new home and help everyone in your family from pets to children transition smoothly and use the move to make that happen.
A little organization helps everyone handle the move better. Establish a “command center” within the current home. You need to do that even if it means packing up a main area of the home to allow the centralized area to be set up.
In the command center you can keep a current “to do” list. Also, having a wish list can help everyone transition as well. On the wish list allow children and others in the home to express what would help them transition well, perhaps they need more packing materials for a special item to keep it safe, or they want to pack their window dressing, but to do so will expose their privacy and they need a suggestion. By being able to list their needs, it allows you to keep focused on putting others at the top of the priority list. It can also be where they can express wanting to replace older furniture, or give away items. It is a good place to express needs when others are busy and can’t stop the process to let someone be heard.
The centralized area is also where packing supplies can be found and should be returned when not in use. Not only does it keep things organized it allows you to know when supplies need to be replenished. It can also be the place to find items that someone might need like first aid, snacks, and other things that will help keep everyone fueled with food, drink, supplies, minor medical aid, and get back to the task at hand easily.
Kids have a hard time emotionally packing up their belongings. They may have never gone through a move before and they fear the possibility of their personal toys and items being lost or destroyed. By being extra cautious with their items you can help relieve fears. Add a specific type of sticker that can identify that extra care should be taken with their boxes. Buy decorative stickers or drawing pens and allow them to decorate a special box to hold items that they hold dear.
Being able to pick out new toys for the new home is a way to build excitement for moving. Have the toys chosen online and express to them they will be delivered to the new home, or buy them and pack them away to be unboxed at arrival. Having something, even a small something, to look forward to is important for children. You may assume that they are visioning their new life at the new home as you are, but you might need to make sure of that and initiate conversation such as “What are you going to do the first day in the new house?”
For pets it can be especially hectic and stressful to be in the midst of moving and not understand why things are happening. Rather than expect your pet to deal with the current state of living, establish a safe place for them. Put them in a comfortable area of the home where they can sleep and hang out when packing and moving things is happening. Put on soft music to drown out the noise and voices. This is also important to do when things are being moved out of the home to keep them from running outside. Even pets that are very well behaved and established in the family can exhibit new behaviours during a move, so stick to being cautious and don’t take risks. Use a leash always when there is a possibility of their getting outside, put them behind boundaries to rest, and keep them away from strangers that might be coming into the home to help with the move. They don’t understand the changes and they shouldn’t be forced to handle it. Instead, be empathetic to their inability to grasp what is happening. Make it easy on them and provide peace of mind for your family rather than something occurring that could disrupt the process like a pet becoming ill from stress, becoming lost, or exhibiting an unusual behaviour within the family or to guests.
Overall make the process as organized and as fun as possible. Use unexpected items to help keep things light, cheery, and fun. Buy party hats to wear while doing a hard or labored packing task, plan meals that are celebratory in nature, play lifting and happy music to pack and switch to relaxing music during breaks, provide lots of water to keep everyone hydrated, and take pictures to remember the moment and keep everyone smiling.
Remember that it is important to be mindful of the mindset you have for the move and the process. Keep it joyful, keep focused on the new opportunities and experiences, let nostalgia happen and let others express their needs and fears and address them promptly with understanding and quick solutions if possible.
With a central command spot in place, supplies plentiful, and a to do list that can be updated regularly the move will be smooth and better handled by everyone in the family. Above all be creative in your approach to moving, tips can help, but everything your family needs to do will be unique. With a little organization, a bit of knowledge as to what to expect and how to get things done, a bit of creativity and making it up as you go along, and a lot of fun injected will have you carrying off your move like a champion.
Here is another popular article on moving you could find helpful: Top Moving Tips for Moving Home Day to Prepare for Now