Wrapping Your Head Around Moving

Moving-boxes-in-a-houseOur priorities and needs are changing as we prepare to move. Downsizing once again, we face the challenge of fitting our treasures into a smaller space. And keeping it simple seems to be the way to go.

I still love to turn the pages as I read, yet there’s a growing list of books on my e-reader. And I know that the piles of articles I always intended to reference are now easily accessible on the Internet. As we sift through and make choices–which cherished objects to keep and those to let go–we look back and reminisce. And even though that’s bittersweet, passing possessions on to those in need feels just right.

When we last moved, our kids were beginning their adult lives and not interested in all the stuff. So we packed it up for later. Now, as their children are growing up, they’re nostalgic too and want the keepsakes that define their own youth.

I know that I’ll be content as long as I’m surrounded by what means the most to me: heirlooms that trace our family history, precious memories I carry in my head, photo albums from our travels, hardwired values and rich traditions.

So if moving is on your agenda, how about some practical ideas to get you into the right frame of mind?

Know yourself. What commitments do you already have that impact your choices? Are your old dreams and passions still meaningful? Start to discover the shifts you want to make. Journal writing can provides structure and support as you reflect, brainstorm and put new goals into play.

Gather information Focus on what you need to learn more about. Is your plan financially feasible? What impact does it have on those you love? Find experts who can inform and educate you. And talk to those who, having gone through this experience, can understand and help with your concerns.

Be realistic. Emotional reactions are common and normal. You may regret that you gave away too many mementoes but feel relieved that you have less clutter. Or perhaps you’ll vacillate, excited about your new digs and sad for what you left behind. Try to process and accept your feelings as they emerge.

As it gets closer, I’m eagerly anticipating our move. It’s sort of like summer camp, living in a new building with everyone moving in at the same time. A fresh start–with interesting people to meet and unique surroundings to explore. Recent studies indicate that changing environments and altering surroundings can stimulate neural pathways in your brain. And another extra bonus? Our grandkids don’t live too far away.

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