How to Handle a Stressful Move

Title is a bit of a misnomer, isn’t it? It implies that there is a non-stressful move, or at least that stressful moves aren’t the norm. I just moved across the country not two weeks ago, and for that I had less than a week to pack up my entire two-bedroom apartment. If you have never packed up a two-bedroom apartment in the span of about five days, I can’t say that I would recommend it. There really is nothing as stressful as simultaneously packing up everything that you own, coordinating with your new apartment – across state lines and in a different time zone – get utilities canceled and set up. It’s a mess. Learn from my mistakes, and do as I say, not as I do. If you want to avoid the mess that I found myself in, take a couple words of advice from me.

Start as Early as You Can

organizing for storage

There is a reason why every moving guide says to start early. The moment you start seriously looking for a new place, you should have boxes ready to go. Starting early means that you can take your time to pack, you are under enough stress as it is coordinating with movers and truck rentals and everything else that goes with moving. The last thing you want on top of all of that is to add the pressure of Father Time laughing at you.

Keep the Full Boxes Where You Aren’t


If you have the space to put your packed and loaded boxes someplace where you don’t have to look at them, put them there. When you aren’t packing, let yourself decompress. Do not let the looming specter of packing penetrate your down time. Let yourself think about other things, it will make a world of difference in quality of life and will massively help you destress.

Take Days Off


If you started early enough, take a night or two off from packing. Go out with friends, catch a movie, grab a couple of beers. Do whatever it is that you need to do to decompress. For me that meant hitting the gym every day and regretting the decision shortly after. Find whatever clears your head and make the time to do it. Moving is a job, and treat it like one.

Ask for Help

rolled up area rug

There are times that you just need to admit that you are outside of your wheelhouse, and moving might very well be one of them. Admit that this is something you cannot do alone, or even you and your partner cannot do alone. It might be worth a call to a team of movers or packers. Even if you only hire them for an afternoon, that can make all the difference in the world in terms of stress.

Something that I wish I did during my move was get some short-term personal storage so I wouldn’t have to stare at the massive pile of boxes that was accumulating in my kitchen. It might be well worth the effort to look for a storage center near you to give you a place to keep your packed and ready to go boxes. It is a massive load off to just not see them every day, and will help remove stress. Give them a call, and see what they can do for you.