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7 Stress Busting Tips To Move Home Painlessly

7 Stress Busting Tips To Move Home Painlessly

No one likes dealing with the hassles of moving, and as someone who has had to move twice within the past year, I can definitely understand what a pain it is.

But just like everything else, moving can become much easier (and cheaper) if you prepare properly and do not just wait until the last minute to cram everything into some boxes. Here are some tips which you should use to make moving relatively stress-free.

Know how you’re going to move

Will you be moving your stuff out yourself or will you hire a moving company? Will you be able to count on your friends to help you out? If you are making the move yourself, will you rent a truck?

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Asking questions like these is critical before you actually start moving, and you should know the answers to them weeks if not months in advance. Make reservations for your moving day with a company or friends. This is especially so if you intend to move during the summer, which is peak moving season.

De-clutter

Moving is a fantastic opportunity to go through your stuff, figure out what you really need, and get rid of the rest. Getting rid of clutter will result in a better, freer living space as you have less room occupied by stuff you may need “someday.”

Becoming Minimalist has an excellent guide on things you can do to get rid of clutter, but the simplest step is to look at clothes or stuff you have not worn or used within the past year. Ask yourself if you really need those things. If the answer is no, host a yard sale or donate it to a charity.

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Ask for free cardboard boxes

Good corrugated cardboard boxes are essential for a successful move, and you can get good boxes from places such as the Home Depot for little more than a dollar. But while that may seem cheap, the fact that you will need so many boxes can add up.

Retailers can be a good place to get cardboard boxes for free, particularly big-box stores like WalMart. Ask the store manager or the employees if there are any boxes which you can take off their hands, and they should be happy to give them to you. Just make sure that the boxes are of good enough quality.

Use clothing as stuffing

Popping bubble wrap may relieve your stress, but buying it will not. Instead, your clothes can serve as a good stuffing or packing for your more delicate objects. As a child, I remember watching my mother take our good mugs and glasses, wrap a shirt or sock around them, and then layer each glass into a box or suitcase. None of them ever broke even when we moved across the country.

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Pack a survival kit in advance

When you get to your new home, it will take some time for you to get everything out and accentuated to your new home. And while you deal with the stress of unpacking, you should have a survival kit which will let you easily access items that will help you live better over those tough days of unpacking.

Some recommended items for a survival kit include medication, toiletries, and a blanket. I would also note that important documents such as your Social Security card should go in the survival kit as well so that you know where they are at all times. Don’t make the kit too large – it should be the size of a small, carry-on suitcase.

Label everything

So you finally reach your new home, get the boxes out of your U-Haul or moving truck, and then get confused because you don’t remember what is in which box. This makes moving far more stressful, as you go through an entire box looking for that one object only to find it in another box.

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Instead, label everything in advance so that you know what is in which box. While you could use a Sharpie, I think stickers are a better, more visible choice. Some guides recommend that in addition to writing down what the object is, you should write down how heavy it is and where it should be placed. This will make it easier for the movers.

Take a photograph of your new place

This is particularly important if you are renting a place. When you move into a new home or apartment, make sure to take photographs of the place as soon as you can. Pay particular importance to cracks, holes, or general signs of damage.

The photographs will prove that you did not cause the damage, which thus means that you are not liable for them. If you do not, then your landlord could claim that you caused the damage and thus use it as an excuse not to give you back your deposit when you move out.

Featured photo credit: Karl Baron via flickr.com

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Last Updated on November 19, 2019

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

Are you usually punctual or late? Do you finish things within the time you stipulate? Do you hand in your reports/work on time? Are you able to accomplish what you want to do before deadlines? Are you a good time manager?

If your answer is “no” to any of the questions above, that means you’re not managing your time as well as you want. Here are 20 time management tips to help you manage time better:

1. Create a Daily Plan

Plan your day before it unfolds. Do it in the morning or even better, the night before you sleep. The plan gives you a good overview of how the day will pan out. That way, you don’t get caught off guard. Your job for the day is to stick to the plan as best as possible.

2. Peg a Time Limit to Each Task

Be clear that you need to finish X task by 10am, Y task by 3pm, and Z item by 5:30pm. This prevents your work from dragging on and eating into time reserved for other activities.

3. Use a Calendar

Having a calendar is the most fundamental step to managing your daily activities. If you use outlook or lotus notes, calendar come as part of your mailing software.

I use it. It’s even better if you can sync your calendar to your mobile phone and other hardwares you use – that way, you can access your schedule no matter where you are. Here’re the 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track .

Find out more tips about how to use calendar for better time management here: How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

4. Use an Organizer

An organizer helps you to be on top of everything in your life. It’s your central tool to organize information, to-do lists, projects, and other miscellaneous items.

These Top 15 Time Management Apps and Tools can help you organize better, pick one that fits your needs.

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5. Know Your Deadlines

When do you need to finish your tasks? Mark the deadlines out clearly in your calendar and organizer so you know when you need to finish them.

But make sure you don’t make these 10 Common Mistakes When Setting Deadlines.

6. Learn to Say “No”

Don’t take on more than you can handle. For the distractions that come in when you’re doing other things, give a firm no. Or defer it to a later period.

Leo Babauta, the founder of Zen Habits has some great insights on how to say no: The Gentle Art of Saying No

7. Target to Be Early

When you target to be on time, you’ll either be on time or late. Most of the times you’ll be late. However, if you target to be early, you’ll most likely be on time.

For appointments, strive to be early. For your deadlines, submit them earlier than required.

Learn from these tips about how to prepare yourself to be early, instead of just in time.

8. Time Box Your Activities

This means restricting your work to X amount of time. Why time boxing is good for you? Here’re 10 reasons why you should start time-boxing.

You can also read more about how to do time boxing here: #5 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity.

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9. Have a Clock Visibly Placed Before You

Sometimes we are so engrossed in our work that we lose track of time. Having a huge clock in front of you will keep you aware of the time at the moment.

10. Set Reminders 15 Minutes Before

Most calendars have a reminder function. If you have an important meeting to attend, set that alarm 15 minutes before.

You can learn more about how reminders help you remember everything in this article: The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

11. Focus

Are you multi-tasking so much that you’re just not getting anything done? If so, focus on just one key task at one time. Multitasking is bad for you.

Close off all the applications you aren’t using. Close off the tabs in your browser that are taking away your attention. Focus solely on what you’re doing. You’ll be more efficient that way.

Lifehack’s CEO has written a definitive guide on how to focus, learn the tips: How to Focus and Maximize Your Productivity (the Definitive Guide)

12. Block out Distractions

What’s distracting you in your work? Instant messages? Phone ringing? Text messages popping in?

I hardly ever use chat nowadays. The only times when I log on is when I’m not intending to do any work. Otherwise it gets very distracting.

When I’m doing important work, I also switch off my phone. Calls during this time are recorded and I contact them afterward if it’s something important. This helps me concentrate better.

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Find more tips on how to minimize distractions to achieve more in How to Minimize Distraction to Get Things Done

13. Track Your Time Spent

When you start to track your time, you’re more aware of how you spend your time. For example, you can set a simple countdown timer to make sure that you finish a task within a period of time, say 30 minutes or 1 hour. The time pressure can push you to stay focused and work more efficiently.

You can find more time tracking apps here and pick one that works for you.

14. Don’t Fuss About Unimportant Details

You’re never get everything done in exactly the way you want. Trying to do so is being ineffective.

Trying to be perfect does you more harm than good, learn here about how perfectionism kills your productivity and how to ditch the perfectionism mindset.

15. Prioritize

Since you can’t do everything, learn to prioritize the important and let go of the rest.

Apply the 80/20 principle which is a key principle in prioritization. You can also take up this technique to prioritize everything on your plate: How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

16. Delegate

If there are things that can be better done by others or things that are not so important, consider delegating. This takes a load off and you can focus on the important tasks.

When you delegate some of your work, you free up your time and achieve more. Learn about how to effectively delegate works in this guide: How to Delegate Work (the Definitive Guide for Successful Leaders)

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17. Batch Similar Tasks Together

For related work, batch them together.

For example, my work can be categorized into these core groups:

  1. writing (articles, my upcoming book)
  2. coaching
  3. workshop development
  4. business development
  5. administrative

I batch all the related tasks together so there’s synergy. If I need to make calls, I allocate a time slot to make all my calls. It really streamlines the process.

18. Eliminate Your Time Wasters

What takes your time away your work? Facebook? Twitter? Email checking? Stop checking them so often.

One thing you can do is make it hard to check them – remove them from your browser quick links / bookmarks and stuff them in a hard to access bookmarks folder. Replace your browser bookmarks with important work-related sites.

While you’ll still checking FB/Twitter no doubt, you’ll find it’s a lower frequency than before.

19. Cut off When You Need To

The number one reason why things overrun is because you don’t cut off when you have to.

Don’t be afraid to intercept in meetings or draw a line to cut-off. Otherwise, there’s never going to be an end and you’ll just eat into the time for later.

20. Leave Buffer Time In-Between

Don’t pack everything closely together. Leave a 5-10 minute buffer time in between each tasks. This helps you wrap up the previous task and start off on the next one.

More Time Management Techniques

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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