How to take the Stress out of moving

Happy movers, moving, moving tips


Moving the SMART way

It is summer.  Lots of people are moving.  Are you one of them?  If you are stressed, this post will help you.

The question is, how do you have a SMART move?  If you follow these steps, I guarantee you a lower stress level during your move!


It is never too early to start purging.  Even if you are just thinking about putting your house on the market, get started.  Some easy things to purge include:

  • old toys
  • children’s books that your kids have outgrown
  • clothes that don’t fit
  • exercise equipment you never use

Look to thrift stores to donate items.  Salvation Army even picks up donations!


One of the most useful tools I use with any client, moving or organizing, is a plan.  With a plan, you avoid running around from room to room, and waking up in the middle of the night because you forgot to have the mail forwarded.  You get the point.   To do this, make a list of all the tasks you need to do before you move.  Many of us have items that need to get returned to friends, or household repairs to be done before the move.  Plus, moving companies and websites have great checklists for all the details you need to take care of when leaving one home and entering the next.  Check it out!  Why reinvent the wheel when a professional mover has already put a great list together?

Once you have a plan, and it is WRITTEN DOWN, your peace of mind increases dramatically.

Have a system for labeling.  Some people color-code for different rooms in the house, which you can do with just a colored marker.  Or just write the room the box needs to go to right on the box.


Trying to do everything yourself and then realizing a day before your move that you are not ready is a horrible feeling.  Instead, ask for help early.  Ask friends to come and help out a week before the move or earlier.  You can order some pizza for your helpers to show your appreciation!

There are several things that friends can pack quite easily.  Books, videos, children’s toys, for example.  Packing up a kitchen is easy to have help with as well, as long as you are there to supervise what needs to stay out until the last minute.

And if you are still feeling overwhelmed, go ahead and call a professional like me for help.  It is great to have a professional on your team for such a big undertaking.

R  :  Gather your RESOURCES

Take 15 minutes to list your resources.  It is well worth the time.

  • People  (especially ones with moving experience)
  • Budget for the move
  • Number of boxes and packing material on hand
  • Real estate agent
  • Websites  (for packing lists, etc)
  • Amount of time you have before the move
  • A truck

Can you think of other resources you have?

Now list the moving resources you still need.  Have more newspaper, bubble wrap and boxes than you think you need.  I usually budget 1 small box for each shelf of books, for example.  Keep in mind unless you have a mover, you have to LIFT these boxes, too!

Tip:  make sure to keep your towels, dish cloths, sheets and blankets accessible to fill the tops of book boxes.  They are also really handy for packing your delicate china, glasses and serving dishes.


Now I’m not saying to pack one box and sit down to look at what a good job you did, but do take a break when you need it.  If you are starting to get stressed and are flitting from room to room, you are not effective any more.  It is time to clear your head for 15-20 minutes.

Call a friend, take a shower, watch something funny, have a cup of tea or a snack, etc.

Then when you get back to work, your brain will be rested and you will come back with renewed energy for packing.  It really works!

So, for a less stressful move, be SMART and start early, make a plan, ask for help, gather resources, and take a break when you need it.

Please don’t be shy.  Share this blog post with some friends who can use it!

SalvationArmy:  541-773-6965

Goodwill:   Mfr: 541-772-3300 CP: 541-665-0025 GP: 541-479-6000

More Moving tips:

photo courtesy of American Movers Orlando website