Anyone who's undertaken a big move or relocated far away from home will agree that it's one of the most challenging life events, both physically and emotionally.
Relocating involves a significant transition and having to deal with the uncertainty of a new path, which generates anxiety and, at times, even crippling for many people. This is because we value familiarity, routine, and order. When relocating, you have none of these.
Plus, you are not just moving houses, you are venturing into a completely new environment, finding a new school for your kids, creating new friends, taking a new route to work, finding a new veterinarian for your pet.
It is the lack of order, the uncertainty of things, the upheaval that surrounds relocating that triggers stress and anxiety, among other mental health conditions.
Get Familiar With Indicators Of Moving Anxiety
Do you feel jittery or filled with dread whenever you think about relocating?
With so many boxes to tick off your checklist, and so little time leading up to the big move, feeling apprehensive or uneasy should be no surprise. However, it's best not to ignore anxiety signals.
Often, anxiety is a logical response to stressful events such as relocating your entire life. Anxiety and emotional stress of relocating are characterized by:
● Trouble concentrating and making difficult decisions
● Anticipating the worst/illogical worries
● Problematic sleep
Dealing with Your Anxiety Before Relocating
Some, if not all, signs of anxiety can be handled without needing medication. Here are three tips to help you transition anxiety and keep you feeling productive at a time of uncertainty.
Plan and Organize Your Move Well
A moving checklist is a great way to bring some order to the chaos of relocating.
A great way to do this is to breakdown your move into manageable steps to help you make the project more realistic. It will also help keep your anxiety at bay when you check off a designated task for the day or week.
Some essential elements to include in your checklist are:
● Order your packaging supplies – boxes, containers, packing paper, bubble wrap, packing tape, etc.
● Update your home address on any necessary files.
● Make all your down payments and security deposits required for your new home.
● Make travel arrangements for your new location.
● Get all your official documents in order.
● Sort your household. Rent out a storage unit or donate if downsizing.
● Pack everything days in advance to the big move.
Ask and Accept Help from Close Friends and Family
Relocating to a new environment often results in significant moving expenses and a lot of logistical headaches that dampen the mood.
Asking for relocation assistance from close friends and family when it comes to packing and moving heavy household items, or just bringing you some takeout on a busy moving day can do wonders in reducing your anxiety.
Your close friends and family will want to help you, as long as what you are asking for is fair. If you have no family living close by, you can always enlist professional movers to help ease your workload and keep your stress level down.
The truth is, relocation can be a fantastic chance for a fresh start. The new and exciting possibilities can energize and motivate you to be your best self. While the beginning stages appear to be the worst, getting started with your new life gets better.
Remember to take it slow so you won't feel compelled to finish everything at once. As things slowly come off your list, you'll feel better and help keep anxiety at bay. And while you are at it, give yourself a chance to say goodbye to your old home. After all, it's the end of an era and the beginning of a new one!