Moving to a new home can fill you with a range of emotions. Whether you’re excited about a fresh start or feeling some stress over all of the change, there is likely a lot on your mind. In the midst of practicalities and emotional charges, anxiety can arise.

Moving stress is a natural result of so much happening, but knowing that doesn’t chase it away. If you’re feeling a bit anxious, we’re here to help. We’ve come up with 10 ways to calm your moving anxiety so you can have a smooth transition.

1. Focus on Your Outlook

The best place to start in quelling moving anxiety is to have the right attitude. An abundance of stress can bring the negative or worrisome aspects of anything to the forefront. That means we get pessimistic which creates more anxiety.

So how do you stop this cycle before it begins? Focus on the positives. Consider all that lies ahead rather than dwelling in the chapter that’s closing. You’ll meet new people, see new things, and have a new local cafe to make yourself at home in. The transition period may be uncomfortable but remember, it’s only temporary. You’ll be settled into your new place in no time. Don’t forget – your current place was once new as well!

2. Do Some Research

Anxiety often rises with a series of “what ifs” and a list of unknowns. Your positive mindset will have hopefully made some of those unknowns into an exciting aspect of your move. For the more practical aspects, a little research goes a long way.

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Do a little research about your new neighborhood. Where’s the nearest park? What’s the best grocery store? Are there any fun restaurants nearby? Pub trivia you may like to join? What about your route to and from work? Researching some of these practical aspects will help take away a lot of the looming uncertainty, making more space for excitement about your new place.

3. Get a Head Start

Nothing builds stress like scrambling to get things done. The best thing you can do for yourself – and your anxious feelings – is to start early. The closer you get to moving day, the more things are in motion. It’s best to start early with finding your new place, hiring movers, packing slowly and steadily, and wrapping up things like utilities and updating your address. 

Bonus tip: By starting with your least-used items first, you can begin packing weeks before you move. Pack off-season clothes, books you’ve already read, lesser-used appliances, and other items you don’t need on a daily basis.

4. Make Lists

Making lists will help calm the chaos as it will lay everything out in front of you. Without lists, all of the to-dos become clutter in your mind and begin to build anxious energy. If you’re not much of a list person, trust us – they’re a valuable tool in times like these.

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Make lists and assign due dates to tasks. Hiring movers, getting packing supplies, forwarding your mail… all of these things should go on your list. Include the things you’re sure you won’t forget. There are things that will likely slip your mind in the shuffle, so write them all down. At the very least, you’ll get the satisfaction of crossing them off even if you didn’t need the list to remind you!

5. Declutter

The more stuff you’re moving, the busier the day is. Not only when it comes to packing and moving, but also the unpacking process on the other side. Decluttering is a great way to save yourself time, money, and anxious feelings.

Since you’ve started early (you followed our advice, right?) you can do double-duty by decluttering while you sort and pack. Go room by room and divide your things into Keep, Donate, Sell, and Trash piles. As you find items that have wandered off – how did that hat end up on the dining table? – bring them into the rooms where they belong. This will help calm your moving anxiety when it’s time to unpack, too.

6. Don’t Be Shy

You can create excess stress by trying to tackle this whole project on your own. Remember: you don’t have to do it all by yourself! It’s okay – even comforting – to enlist friends and family for some help. They can help you pack, move heavy things, or even just share some food while you do tedious tasks. This will also give you a chance to reminisce about old memories you’ve had in your place, and get excited about creating new ones.

7. Find the Fun

Make yourself a playlist and belt out some mid-move karaoke! Why not? Moving doesn’t have to be all work and tasks and checklists. You can also enjoy yourself along the way!

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Create an upbeat soundtrack for the days you spend packing to keep your body moving and your mind alert. Wear a fitness tracker so you can make sure you’ve got your steps while you’re shuffling around the house. Set up a little reward system for your accomplishments. How does a cookie for every 10 packed boxes sound? Don’t let the seriousness take over and bring some anxious feelings. Allow yourself to move, laugh, and have a bit of fun.

8. Take Time for Goodbye

Allow yourself to pause along the way to say some goodbyes. This goes not only for the people you’ve grown close to but to the home you’ve lived in and the neighborhood where you’ve built your memories. It may sound silly, but this closure will really help to calm your moving anxiety. Give gratitude, take short trips down memory lane, and say loving goodbyes as you move to the next chapter of your life.

9. Have Activities to Look Forward To

Here’s another chance to make a list! This time, one that you can cross off after all of the practical stuff is behind you. Make a list of things you’d like to experience in your new neighborhood. Restaurants to try, museums to visit, local activities you’d like to be a part of. Give yourself some things on the horizon that you can’t wait to do, and you’ll find some relaxation in looking forward to what lies ahead.

10. Get Help From Experts

Let’s face it: no matter how organized you are, packing and moving just aren’t the most thrilling activities. They’re particularly not the best part of moving to a new place. You could cut a lot of the stress-inducing elements of moving by hiring professionals to handle some of the items on your to-do list.

A moving company will do the heavy lifting and moving, collecting your boxes and safely transporting them before unloading them into your new home. That’s not all you can get help with, though.

Full-service moving companies will go above and beyond in helping calm your moving anxiety. They will bring moving supplies, pack up all of your boxes, load everything safely into the truck to transport, then unpack everything on the other side. They’ll even take away all of the boxes and clutter when they go. That’s a lot of things ticked off the list, and you didn’t even have to lift a finger!