It is often said that moving house is one of the most stressful life events. I am sure that most would agree with this popular and widely accepted statement. What if you decided against this though, and truly wanted to defy the odds? Is it possible to move happily, without all of the angst and negativity?
Yes moving house is exhausting, time consuming and if you could outsource the entire process you would in a heartbeat (you can if you can afford to!). I recently moved house from Sydney to the Central Coast, I stopped counting how many times I have moved when I hit the 20th time so I’m not entirely sure where I am at in terms of the numbers! I decided this time was going to be different to the others though, and I smashed it!
It really is about your mindset, and being organised. I gave 30 days notice to leave which was the same leave date as my move in date. I highly recommend this or even longer to get yourself organised. Start the entire process without whining, accept that it is going to happen, and face it all with hope and renewal rather than negativity.
I’m not saying that I didn’t complain, or cry or roll my eyes. Nobody is perfect! It was exhausting, just like running 5kms is exhausting, and parenting and adult-ing. It is all a part of life though, and our power in this life is in how we react to it all.
Here are my tips for moving house happily:
♡ As soon as you know you’re moving, get your boxes ready.
♡ Commit to culling, downsizing your ‘stuff’ and use this as the perfect time to declutter, cleanse and give things away. I committed to giving away a third of our stuff, and I achieved this by being brutal, focusing on living a ‘lighter’ new life.
♡ First step is to give to charity, before you start packing. Let go of sentimentality, hoarder tendencies and holding onto things ‘in case you need them one day.’ Seriously, no excuses.
♡ Start filling your car with clothes, toys and other household items for charity. Decide which charity they are going to, or choose a couple in your local area. Spend a few hours on as many occasions as needed filling the boot and dropping items to the charity.
♡ Repeat this process until you have donated a large amount of non-essential items.
♡ If you’re having trouble culling your wardrobe, listen to this first.
♡ Have a serious think about the amount of kitchen items you own and how many you really need? Do you really want to pack and move the things that you never use? Could they be better utilised by a charity that is helping disadvantaged people set up their own homes?
♡ In the same spirit of giving, go through every room in the house and assess what is an essential item needed daily, what is filled with JOY and enriches your life, and everything else. Everything else needs to go.
♡ This is one of my hottest tips! Following the charity cull you will find that you have some things not really in good enough condition for others to use, and that are too big or bulky for the rubbish or recycling. Use Airtasker to find someone who will come and take these things away for you before you move. I had about a third of my garage full of this type of ‘stuff’. It was not needed, not really good enough for donating and just too bulky and time consuming for me to deal with. Within the first 10 minutes of posting this task on Airtasker I was being bombarded with quotes and I ended up paying someone $100 to take it all away. Best. Decision. Ever.
♡ Pack something every single day. I packed a few boxes a day for the month leading up to my move. It was not overwhelming, I kept the boxes stacked neatly and it didn’t feel stressful or out of control. So many times in the past I allowed it to pile up, stressed during the last week and ruined the whole experience. Doing a little each day reduces the overwhelm.
♡ Organise your removalist nice and early, message them at least 3 times before the day to double check details and make sure you have their quote in writing (email) and a guarantee of no extra charges ever, no matter what.
♡ Book in your carpet steam cleaning nice and early too, and arrange for them to do the job either as soon as you leave on the day of the move, or the day after. I simply asked the carpet cleaner to collect the keys from the real estate the day after my move, too easy.
♡ Do a little bit of the cleaning each day up until the move too. I did the walls, blinds, skirting boards, windows, balcony, cupboards, drawers, bathroom, toilet, laundry, light fittings, stove, oven, range hood and all other areas in the month before the move date. On the day of the move I cleaned (with the help of a super bestie) as the movers were taking the things onto the truck.
♡ Stay focused on the cleansing benefits of moving. There is no better time in life to start over. Never have we been more overloaded in our homes, hearts and minds than we are with stuff in this day and age. You don’t need stuff to make you happy, it never works. Remember that when you are culling, less is more!
♡ Yes it is tiring, and it can be emotional. I cried a lot of the days that I was packing, and that is perfectly OK .. in fact, it is part of the cleansing process. Another hot tip, get something on Netflix (or DVD or however you binge) while you pack, something you have seen before and love. I started my complete rewatch of SUITS and it seriously got me through!
♡ Remember that setting up your new place is one of life’s major JOYS! Unpacking your beloved things that have survived your cull, the blank slate of a new home, there is not much in life more satisfying and life affirming!
Do you have any other moving tips?