Moving to a new city is as thrilling as it is stressful, but once the last box has been unpacked, you can begin to acclimatize yourself to the area. The process will make you feel at home while obliterating much of the anxiety involved in feeling uprooted.
1. The Hard Work Begins
After days of carrying boxes back and forth, you probably need a vacation, but your new home won’t let you off the hook just yet. Your house’s secrets need to be unlocked first. Look specifically for:
- Insect infestations that could damage your furniture or clothing.
- Poorly secured windows and doors.
- Water and electricity meter readings.
- Loose carpets that could cause falls.
- Child-proofed plugs, swimming pools, and stairs.
- The correct fire-proofing.
2. The Exploration Process
The sooner you feel at home in your neighborhood, the faster your disorientation will evaporate, so break out your inner explorer and investigate your surroundings. Arm yourself with a map and find out where the libraries, NGOs, and hospitals are. Look for parks and recreational areas, too
3. Settling In
Take care of the practical aspects of moving during the first few days:
- Arrange phone, cable, and internet access.
- Register your children at their new schools.
- Register your car if you’ve crossed state lines.
- Find the supermarkets.
- Start the process of choosing a new doctor.
- Introduce your children to play areas and arrange play dates with neighborhood kids.
4. Your Pets
Your fluffy and feathered friends probably feel disoriented, too, so give your pets plenty of affection in the early weeks of the move. Take dogs for a walk around the neighborhood and set a safe space aside for them to hide out during unpacking. Your pets may well act out after the move because they’re as anxious as you are. Their bad habits might start playing up and their socialization process may devolve for a while. Eating, barking, and sleeping habits might change temporarily, too, so give them plenty of patience and love.
5. Adjusting to Relocation Depression
Moving is among life’s most stressful events, and it’s natural to fall into a slight depression. Family relationships can become strained, and a new climate will take its toll. Culture shock can generate severe and long-lasting symptoms, so take it seriously. You can cope with slight depression by:
- Staying in touch with old friends and making new ones.
- Being patient with other members of the family.
- Finding ways to adapt to and enjoy your new lifestyle.
- Finding employment.
If your symptoms last longer than two weeks and/or affect your sleep, appetite, and concentration, seek medical support. A sense of worthlessness, guilt, and anxiety should also be professionally treated.
6. The Fun Part of Moving
Don’t be too self-conscious to become a temporary tourist in your new town. Every area has its unique personality, and its walking or driving tours will be crafted around this. Whether it’s ghost tours, museum trips, or historical site visits, sign up with a guidebook in hand. This is how you’ll discover a treasured, hidden garden or an out-of-the-way clubhouse that can enhance your life and that of your family.
7. Starting your New Social Life
Introducing yourself to the neighbors needn’t be a chore. A housewarming party is a simple way to integrate into the area, and your new neighbors will give you plenty of information about your suburb.
The moving experience can be entirely turned around with a simple change in perspective. Focus on the adventure, and the stress is likely to subside somewhat. This is the first day of your new life. Make it count.