It’s difficult to describe the feeling evoked when the moving truck pulls up in front of your house. The truck is loaded to the brim with your personal belongings and you may feel excited, anxious, and a bit overwhelmed.

With each opened box comes nostalgia, familiarity, and relief when things arrive in one piece. Then you step back and take a look. What was once neatly organized in cubes is now strewn about the floor of your new house. Although it’s great to have your belongings once again, there is now “stuff” everywhere. It is your job to find a place for it, and that can be an exhausting task.

Rest assured, there are ways to help simplify the process. These ten tips will assist you in your quest to unload, set up, and settle in, all while helping you to stay sane.

Don’t try to do everything at once.

Moving takes time, and I know from experience that moving could mean you may not see your belongings for a couple months. It’s natural to want to settle in as quickly as possible and do everything on day one, but try and pace yourself. Your house isn’t going anywhere and neither are all the boxes that need to be unpacked. If you try and focus on one task at a time, you’ll likely avoid burning yourself out early on in the process.

Prioritize important rooms.

A great place to start is the kitchen. Chances are you’ve been eating fast food and takeout and are looking forward to the convenience and health benefits of cooking your own meals. Additionally, if you have children, prioritizing their rooms may help to make them feel settled and more at home.

Stash secondary boxes.

Some boxes contain non-essential items such as guest room bedding, books, keepsakes or holiday decorations. Put those aside and don’t open them until you’ve finished with your priority boxes. Designate a wall, room, or closet where you can keep the non-essential boxes to help minimize clutter while you unpack.

Organize out of the box.

Instead of stashing items under beds, in cabinets, or in closets, take the time to give everything its own place. You’ll thank yourself later when you can find exactly what you’re looking for.

Make a donation box.

Odds are you’ll wonder why some items even made the move. Be it clothing you don’t wear or toys the children don’t miss, place these items in boxes to sell or donate.  Consider making a list of what not to pack when you move.

Take sanity breaks.

Instead of pushing yourself until you reach the point of frustration, make sure you take some time to get up and stretch, take a breather by treating yourself to an episode of your favorite show, or do whatever it takes to help you relax for a bit. The unpacking will get done, just give yourself some time.

Designate times to work.

If you find you aren’t accomplishing much while your children are present, or you are more productive when you team up with your spouse, build a plan around it. Set days and times to work at your most optimal. It will help you enjoy your off time and will help manage workload expectations.

Get out of the house.

Feel like a hermit? That’s common. Don’t count runs for groceries, cleaning supplies and light bulbs as getting out of the house. Find a nearby park, museum, restaurant or attraction and have some fun instead.

Save some for later.

As difficult as it is to admit, some things just need to wait. Items that take time to complete such as loose photos that need an album, or that pile of next season’s clothes you need to try on, don’t have to be done right now. These items are not essential to completing your house: it’s okay to save some boxes for later.

Haven’t unpacked it after a year? Consider parting ways.Excluding sentimental items and important documents, if you find yourself wondering “what is in there and why haven’t I needed it” then it’s time to say goodbye. Make your next move easier by not bringing these boxes with you.

Moving can be a stressful and strenuous process. So go easy on yourself, have realistic expectations, and try and go at a reasonable pace. Your new space will feel like home in no time

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Written By

Stephen Bennett

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