Moving to a new house is one of life’s most stressful events. But sometimes, it’s the cure to another overwhelmingly difficult life change, such as the loss of a loved one, a marital breakdown, or a mid-career or life crisis. It might feel like you want to leave the place and all the bad memories behind, and then make a brand new start in an unfamiliar location. You’re hoping that the pain will go away and you can start making happy memories.
How do you handle such an emotionally charged relocation? Here are some of the important steps you can take to pull yourself together and make this difficult transition more bearable:
Take your time
Many surviving family members have a hard time packing their deceased loved one’s belongings, as it brings to mind beautiful and hurtful memories. In fact, they couldn’t even go to their loved one’s room without being deeply emotional. In the same way, divorced individuals find it difficult to imagine leaving the family home they built together with their ex-spouse.
Be patient with yourself. Give yourself time to mourn, as it is normal to have those negative emotions or feel bad about what happened. But don’t wallow into emotions so much that you end up making emotional decisions, such as getting rid of the oven you and your ex-spouse bought at your first anniversary or donating your deceased loved one’s belongings right away.
Take the time to think about the present and the future. Analyze the possible effects of the decisions you are about to make. Consult a friend or a professional if you find it hard to distinguish a good decision from a bad one.
No one could overcome emotional life’s challenges, as well as the logistical tasks of the move, alone. When you’re ready to pack, reach out to friends and family for some help. It will be less overwhelming to go through stuff and reminisce when you have a shoulder to cry on. Some people also find relief in hiring professional movers, as they’re able to secure stuff better, especially the fragile mementos of deceased loved ones.
Sometimes, help won’t come from people per se, but from technology. Try using a moving estimate application, a tool that lets you see the total cost of moving your stuff. This can help you better prepare for the financial aspect of the relocation.
Imagine the new life
If today is a bad day, there’s always the possibility of a good tomorrow. The pain you’re feeling right now won’t be permanent. But you need to be proactive about moving forward. Envision the life you’ll live in the new place you’re getting. Perhaps you can set up the garden your deceased spouse have long wanted. Or maybe you can revisit that hobby you abandoned when you got married. Try a new career path where your passion is fueled. The bottom line is, look forward to a new beginning in your life and think positively.
The transition to a new home and new life is difficult when you’re going through something bad. But don’t lose hope; you’ll get through it because you’re brave and capable.
Leonard Thorne is an environmental studies lecturer and an ardent practitioner of sustainable living methods. He is proud of his almost-net-zero-energy home in Seattle, where he lives with his wife and 2 dogs. He has been advocating for eco-friendly manufacturing practices for over a decade and works closely with many non-government organizations as a sustainable practice consultant