While moving alone is stressful, moving with children makes it even more stressful. Psychologists often estimate that the emotional stress of moving is the third biggest cause of stress after divorce and death, and uprooting children to a new environment can be a strain on the whole family.
Fortunately, there are many ways to reduce the stress and ease the transition of moving your entire household from one location to another.
Here are three tips to make the move easier on everyone in your family:
Tip#1: Get help with childcare.
As you move, you will have a long to-do list. There will probably be deadlines to meet, too, which means that you have to get through your list quickly. With children, it may seem almost impossible to work efficiently.
Trying to do everything is a huge mistake. It results in frayed nerves, outbursts of anger, and heartbreaking temper tantrums.
The solution to this quandary is actually quite simple: get a babysitter or caretaker to take care of your children if they are too young to help you with the move. This way, you can focus your attention on packing and getting everything else done.
Ask family or friends to help you out. If they are unavailable, hire a babysitter. Once you’ve made good child care arrangements, you’ll have a clearer mind, an improved mood, and the time, energy, mobility, and freedom to take care of all the things that you need to do to complete your to-do list.
Tip #2 Use a portable storage container.
Moving is much easier, if you have a place to put the boxes you’ve packed. Letting big boxes fill up the middle of the room makes it hard to get around from room to room.
By using a portable storage container, you can store your packed boxes outside, giving you much more space to move around inside the house. If moving with United Mayflower, you will be able to get a container that is about 16 feet long, 8 feet wide, and 8 feet high. This is more than enough space to pack content that fills a 1,500 square foot house. If you have more stuff, you can always get an additional container. In addition, you can either do it yourself or get a few helpers to help you with heavy things like ovens, refrigerators, cabinets, dressers, and sofas.
The best thing about this idea is that once you’re packed, the moving company will transport the container itself to your new home. This way you save yourself a lot of overall effort.
#3 Reach out to your new community.
If your kids are older and don’t need a babysitter, you can involve them in researching their new home. You can pick up travel books at your local library to research the history of your new location or use Google maps to help them get a visual image of what their new home or school will look like. By giving your children a sense of where they will be going, you’ll build up a psychological connection to their new home before they’ve left the security of their old one behind. Moving can be made to appear like an adventure and an opportunity to bond.
You can also tap into your personal network of family and friends to give you and your children an idea of what it will be like to live in your new neighborhood.
Another idea is to sign up for a new church, Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts, and sports leagues through the Internet or making a few phone calls.
Why are these steps important for your children?
While planning and preparing for your move can be physically hard on you, it can be downright scary for your children. They may be leaving the only house they’ve ever known and separating from the only friend’s they’ve ever made in their short life. From their perspective, packing up and moving out may appear rather traumatic.
Besides finding ways that your children can feel comfortable with the transition, you can also engage them in the process of moving. Perhaps, you can ask them to pitch in by packing a few boxes of their own stuff. Perhaps, you can encourage them to create a donation box for all the things that they don’t want to take with them.
Help Is Available
Although moving may feel overwhelming, and you feel isolated and vulnerable with too much to do, too little time, and insufficient support, there is actually plenty of help available if you ask for it. Help is available from baby sitters to professional movers, from family and friends, and from computer technology itself as you reach out to connect with your new community across cyberspace before you’ve left your familiar world.