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How to Prepare for a Move

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How to pack for moving into a new homeMoving into a new home is stressful for everyone.  From the packing, to the planning and ultimately the unpacking, stresses simply mount.  And moving can also require a tremendous amount energy to accomplish all of the necessary tasks.  Many people also experience a great deal of worry.  Will a precious family heirloom get broken?  Will your expensive table get scratched?  The specific cause of stress or worry may vary.  But the affect is the same.  Moving is difficult.  So be smart and properly prepare for a move.

And this is only the move itself.  Once you add the uncertainties of moving into an unfamiliar environment, area or even city or state, it can just be too much to handle alone.  While there is no way to completely eliminate all of the stress, worry and anxiety, there are some things that you can do to help. 

If you have the financial means, hire a local mover.  If your anxiety is extensive, consider use of a senior relocation specialist.  They help not only with the move itself but also with settling into a new home environment. 

If you decide to do some packing yourself, it is important to know which items need packing.  Your new home may have limited space.  Make decisions early so there is no last minute anxiety related to deciding what can and should be moved.  Let someone help with prioritizing items from the necessary to the very special.  Setting a timetable checklist can help you to schedule what needs to be done and when.

Be sure to use fairly small boxes.  Attempts to manipulate large boxes during and after packing is difficult due to the added weight.  Label each box with a general description of the contents and the room each box should be placed.  This will make unpacking much easier and organized.  Moving is a great time to get rid of times that you accumulated over time.  There is no reason to move things that will only end up at the bottom of a closet never to see the light of day.  Nor is it smart to just pack everything with the intent to go through items when you unpack.  This would result in moving many unneeded items and the intent of filtering through items later may never occur.   Add some time on the front end of the move so you do not feel rushed or tempted to pack those unneeded items.

Never attempt to lift items that are too heavy.  Get family or friends to help.  The physical demands of moving can easily lead to injury if you are not smart.  Take safety precautions and do not stack items too high since they can easily fall or leave items strewn on the floor as they can easily lead to a fall.

If you are close enough to your relocation site, take some time to check out the area.  Find a restaurant you like and identify local entertainment and quality of life opportunities.  It is also a good idea to determine if there is public or senior transportation available in your area.  Moving can be hard work and scary.  But you can also make it an adventure.  My great aunt loved to pack, move and redecorate new homes.  She did so every year or so well into her eighties.  Learning how to deal with your feelings and look at the new opportunities ahead can actually make the experience a true adventure.

If a decision is made to move a senior relative due to their inability to live independently, ensure that when discussing the decision that they understand the decision is in his best interest and has nothing to do with your personal feelings.  During the conversation you may very well experience resistance or even a display of anger.   Keep the situation civil and maintain your composure because responding to their emotion will only make the situation worse.  You may even consider asking how they feel about the decision.   Find out about any fears and concerns the have and jointly come up with a solution to alleviate them.  Reassure them that you will schedule regular visits to maintain the family unit.  If you live in different cities or states, make an obligation and assure them that visits may be even more often than before so the situation has a silver lining.  If the topic becomes overly hostile and angry, it is recommended you call for professional relocations assistance.  This is a very emotional and traumatic experience for many people.  It is best that the situation is handled appropriately.  Never be hard on yourself or feel guilty about the decision you have made with your senior relative. If you cannot offer the care they need, then moving them elsewhere is the best decision. No matter where they live, remember they will always be a part of family.

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