Whether you’re moving cross-town, cross country, or internationally, MOVING IS STRESSFUL. I’ve moved 8 times in the past 20 years and done all the above. So here some first-hand tips of DO-S and DON’TS to help with your move in the category of PACKING.
As a Klutter Koach, the first thing I’m suggesting is to DO a DEEP DECLUTTER. WHY? You will
- SAVE MONEY because you won’t be paying the movers to shlep items you no longer need, cutting costs for packing materials and labor.
- SAVE TIME because there will be fewer things to unpack and put away.
With decluttering as a pre-packing goal, DO schedule a thrift store pickup date or drop-off day. (Note: first check to see which of your local second-hand shops are currently accepting donations).
DO KEEP THINGS THAT SPARK JOY. I suggest using Marie Kondo’s method of “Does this spark joy?” If you like it and use it then keep it. Nobody ever said to throw out that ratty old concert t-shirt because you haven’t worn it in a year. If it gives you fond memories then keep it.
DON’T KEEP THINGS YOU NEVER USE. After months of being home during a global pandemic and economic crisis, you should have a good idea of what you wear/don’t wear/ use/ don’t use / like /don’t like. If you aren’t already using it, chances are you won’t. I’m sure there are exceptions to the rule (like any) but the “I might use it someday” moment has arrived. If you haven’t used it, just because you acquired it doesn’t mean you need to keep it for posterity.
DO START WITH A SMALL AREA. If you are already overwhelmed, start in a small area like a bathroom, not a garage. In the bathroom, the decision to chuck old beauty care or hygiene products should be relatively simple. Then separate out what you are currently using with what you aren’t and box up (but not necessarily seal) those items.
DO HAVE COLORED DUCT TAPE OR COLORED STICKERS. Denote rooms by COLOR-CODING. For example, all boxes going to the kitchen will be color-coded with a yellow piece of tape or sticker, blue for the master bedroom, green for the living room, etc. There are some great visuals as well as other packing tips on ONECRAZYHOUSE called Moving Tips to Keep You From Going Insane.
DO TAKE PHOTOS. Take a picture of both the contents in the box and the outside of the box. This will serve as a reminder as to what’s inside, especially if there will be a long gap between when you pack and when you unpack. For those making an international move or making aliyah, I HIGHLY RECOMMENDED this part of the packing process.
DO CREATE A FILE FOR THE PHOTOS. After you’ve taken photos, send yourself an email with all the pictures. Next, create a virtual file on your computer and move all the emails into this reference file. The purpose of the photos and the file is to avoid the “Honey, where’s the…???” question post-move. If you have been following my blog, you know I recommend this same technique for turning over the Pesach kitchen.
DON’T SORT SENTIMENTAL ITEMS. You don’t have the time to reminisce over every item. Now is not the time go head down Memory Lane. For now, put the items in a box and label the contents.
DO PRACTICE SELF-CARE. Be sure you’re taking time to eat, drink, and BREATHE.
Self-explanatory. Know your limits. An injury (G-d forbid) will slow everything down.
DO MAKE AN OPEN FIRST BOX. These are things you will want to access immediately upon arriving at your new home. These are things like toilet paper (yes..toilet paper is always on the mind these days), trash bags, extension cords. For a FREE OPEN-FIRST BOX MOVING CHECKLIST PDF contact me and I’ll be happy to send one out to you.
DO OUTSOURCE. If you find the packing to be too overwhelming or you don’t think you can get it all done on your own, enlist the help of a friend, relative, (a Klutter Koach if you’re in Bet Shemesh) or let the movers finish what you started. If being home during Corona has taught me any lessons, MENTAL HEALTH is CRUCIAL. Respect your limits and do what you need to do.
May your new home be filled with blessings, good health, and happiness!