Moving is a Beneficial Stress

Whether desired or forced, moving is always an internal shock. To leave our native walls, to part with things, witnesses of the past, to settle in a new space-this causes us very diverse feelings, from emptiness to joyful enthusiasm. According to a study by the International Institute of Marketing Research, 70% of us experience serious stress when moving. Especially women — 82% of them admit that they went through it with difficulty.

Often we think that it’s all about the power of habit, because of which it is so difficult to part with the house, yard, neighborhood. However, psychotherapists believe that it is more accurate to talk about attachment: “Attachment implies security, reliability, stability. The house is a habitable, fenced territory, it is imbued with our spirit, memories. All this is our history. This is the shell where we hide, feeling safe. We feel very uncomfortable when we leave it.”

Read also: Moving Equipment and Tools when Relocating

Moving fears

A person is characterized by a fear of change, whether it is a change of work, place of residence or a new relationship. Psychologists add that a new situation increases the degree of uncertainty, and therefore anxiety: how will things turn out now? That’s why moving is so exhausting. But when we make a decision, there is a new potential chance in life. This is a sign of the desire to live, to change, to move forward.

Reasons to move

Today, it is difficult to imagine a person who would never change the roof over his head. If earlier the notorious housing issue forced two or even three generations of the family to co-exist together, now young people, barely getting on their feet, tend to live separately, at least in a rented apartment. Marriage, the birth of children, career growth, divorce, new marriage-important milestones in the biography are often accompanied by moving or a change of residence.

“A change of residence is the end of one life period and the beginning of a new one,” agrees Cathy, 40. – This is an opportunity to redefine, update and get rid of excess cargo. I throw away the clothes that are lying in the closet, the gifts of former lovers when moving…»

But moving is not always a change for the better. Sometimes a divorce, the loss of a high-paying job, a credit trap can force you to move to a smaller apartment, change the center to a remote area. And this also increases the anxiety, our image suffers: since I now live in a cramped and cheap apartment, then my ” I ” seems to decrease. However, any move encourages us to search for our own identity: “Who am I? What am I doing with my life? Are you satisfied?»

Saying goodbye to the old house gives us the opportunity to make an “inventory” of the events experienced here, to understand what role we played in them, what we did wrong and what we can change in the future. If you experience goodbye honestly, being aware of your feelings, then these reflections can become a psychological resource for solving new problems.

It would be nice to say thank you to yourself, to others, to the house for all the good that has been here. And also talk to your family, check your feelings: what was important to you? How do you remember that? Such a natural boundary allows us to say the important things that we do not discuss in everyday life, and to better understand each other, to understand together what we want to change, starting life in a new place.

Read also: Moving Into a Studio Apartment

Moving stress

And so a change of residence is always traumatic. The situation is aggravated by all the accompanying circumstances: unceremonious or unscrupulous realtors, scammers operating in the housing market, which have to be feared. Finally, a string of potential buyers, whose visits are often perceived painfully.

Our home is a projection of our Self, it is our protected world. And when strangers come to it, inspect and evaluate it, we perceive it as if they are evaluating and criticizing us. 

Why do we want to take old unnecessary things with us

The gathering is in full swing, we pack our things, throw others away… and, looking around, we see that our nest is ruined. The old house is no longer there, the new one is not yet there. This intermediate point is the most difficult. Any transition is always a test, a step into the unknown. We see our home, so cozy, so beloved, in which so much effort has been invested. And we ruined it ourselves, with our own hands. This gives rise to a sense of guilt, orphanhood.

At every step, we find ourselves in a situation of choice — which things to take with us, and which to get rid of. And suddenly we start clinging to seemingly complete nonsense. Some old concert ticket will suddenly seem like a jewel-a reminder of a romantic love story. To throw something away is to get rid of some part of your past. Putting old postcards from my childhood in a garbage bag is like moving away from those who once sent them to us. Torn children’s books, a shabby teddy bear-witnesses of the continuity of our existence.

“I was going to give the neighbors a set left over from my grandmother, because I have two more of my own, much more beautiful,” recalls Nina, 43. — But at the last moment I didn’t dare to part with it. As soon as I realized that I was about to lose it forever, it immediately gained value. I wanted to take a lot of completely unnecessary things with me: my son’s school notebooks, a sweater that my mother knitted for him 20 years ago…”

Memories when moving

For the same reason, we are relieved to get rid of things that bring back painful memories. When it comes to leaving, it turns out that even the things that used to annoy us in the house turn out to be an important part of our “fortress”: the harmful neighbor, the piano scales coming from the upper apartment… The difficulty of moving is the loss of familiar landmarks and the effort that will have to be made to create a new living space.

We can laugh at superstitions, but nevertheless we let the cat through the door first, then we hurry to wash the floor of the new apartment for the first time. These ancient rituals are symbolic acts that help you adapt to new conditions. The cat will “protect” the house from evil spirits, water-will clear the space from the presence of former residents. You do not need to drive away sadness and a sense of loss, it is much better to accept them. 

Read also: How to Estimate Your Move

At first it seems that we have destroyed, cut off some memories. But as time goes on, we’ll use our usual things, look at the photos we brought with us, and find that the memories are still with us. And it helps to “assemble” yourself again. We will build a new coordinate system, “tame” an unfamiliar space, acquire new habits, new acquaintances. These are always new opportunities that open up before us.


2021-02-10T06:39:04-05:00FOR MOVING, how to prepare, MOVING MISTAKES|