7 Lessons to Find Zen When Moving House: Moving Mountains (Without Losing Your Mind)

Can you find zen in the middle of moving house? Moving to a new home can be an exciting chapter filled with anticipation and new beginnings. But let’s face it, moving is stressful at any age, and as a woman over 50, it can feel like trying to climb Mount Everest in flip-flops. In this blog post, let’s explore the journey of moving and strategies for finding zen amidst the chaos.

That was me last weekend. Boxes towered like unwelcome guests, packing lists taunted me like unfinished to-do lists, and the ever-present “should I just burn it all down?” question echoed in my head.

Can you find Zen in the Chaos of Moving?

As a woman over 50, life is already filled with its fair share of challenges. I recently read an article from Oprah.com that detailed the challenges Gen X women are currently grappling with in various aspects of their lives. From managing career responsibilities to navigating changes in health and relationships, each day brings obstacles to overcome. Adding a major life event like moving into the mix can amplify these feelings of overwhelm, pushing us to our limits both mentally and physically.

Sound familiar?

Moving at any age can feel like an emotional and physical marathon. But as women over 50, we bring a unique perspective (and maybe a few more aches and pains) to the experience.

Starting on Sunshine, Ending in Overwhelm

My journey began with optimism. Checklists were colour-coded, packing started with gusto, and a “can-do” attitude fuelled my initial steps. But the mountain grew as the moving day loomed, casting a long shadow of doubt and exhaustion.

The reality of the move began to sink in, and the enormity of the task ahead weighed heavily on my shoulders. Thoughts raced through my mind – Will everything go smoothly? Have I forgotten anything important? How will I adjust to this new chapter of my life? Suddenly, the excitement I had initially felt was overshadowed by anxiety and doubt. How would I ever find my zen in this chaos?

Reality Check: What’s Serving Me Well and What’s Not

During the chaos of the move, and any big task, it’s important to take stock of what’s serving us well and what’s not. For me, being a type A personality, having a checklist and a positive attitude initially served me well, providing structure and optimism during the planning stages. However, as the move grew closer, I realized that my tendency to try and control every detail was only adding to my stress levels.

What’s serving me well:

  • Having a checklist to stay organized.
  • Maintaining a positive attitude towards the move.
  • Seeking support from friends and family.

What’s not serving me well:

  • Trying to control every detail.
  • Overthinking and worrying about the unknowns.
  • Ignoring my own needs for rest and relaxation.

Making Choices in the Middle of Overwhelm

So in the middle of the overwhelm, everything can feel daunting. Here are some strategies that helped me navigate decision-making during the move, and find my zen:

  1. Prioritise: Identify the most critical tasks that need to be addressed and focus on completing those first. Let go of perfectionism and accept that not everything will go according to plan.
  2. Delegate: Don’t be afraid to ask for help or delegate tasks to others. Whether it’s enlisting friends to help pack boxes or hiring professional movers to handle the heavy lifting, sharing the workload can alleviate some of the stress.
  3. Set Boundaries: Learn to say no to additional commitments or requests that may add to your overwhelm. Protect your time and energy by prioritizing self-care and focusing on what truly matters. I had a colleague try to have me join a Zoom meeting that I had to decline!!!
  4. Take Breaks: When faced with a decision, allow yourself to step away and take a break if needed. Go for a walk, practice deep breathing exercises, or engage in activities that help you relax and clear your mind.
  5. Trust Yourself: Ultimately, trust that you have the resilience and resourcefulness to navigate through challenges and make the best decisions for yourself. Listen to your intuition and honour your needs and limitations along the way.

Zen Lessons Learned in Boxes

 What did I learn in the midst of the cardboard chaos? I’ll confess that the process of moving has imparted valuable life lessons, prompting me to pause, reflect, and reassess my path toward a brighter and happier existence.

zen space
  1. Acknowledge Your Limits: Pushing through is admirable but not sustainable. Listen to your body and mind. Delegate, ask for help, and don’t be afraid to say no. Remember, the goal is to arrive at your new home, not in the hospital emergency room.
  2. Embrace Imperfections: Let go of the Pinterest-perfect packing dream. Your mismatched socks can coexist with your Hermes scarfs. Focus on functionality, not aesthetics. And what is it about UK homes: never enough staircase space for our furniture? Sometimes, it seems we must bid farewell to cherished pieces simply to navigate the narrow confines.
  3. Celebrate Small Victories: Unpacked a box? High-five yourself! Did you make it through the day without tears? Gold star! And a special dance if you got the wifi working without teen tears!! Moving is a series of small steps, so acknowledge and celebrate each one.
  4. Find Humor in the Chaos: Laughter is the best medicine, even when surrounded by packing peanuts. Share funny stories with your family/ co habitants, watch lighthearted movies, and allow yourself to chuckle at the absurdity of it all.
  5. Focus on the Future: Amidst the stress, visualize your new space. Imagine laughter in the kitchen, cosy evenings by the fireplace, and the fresh start that awaits. Let that vision be your beacon. Find zen in the madness.

Find Time to Practice Your Daily Zen Practices Amidst Chaos: Your Moving Toolkit

In the whirlwind of moving, it’s crucial to maintain grounding daily practices that help restore a sense of zen and balance amidst the chaos. These practices support your overall well-being and can serve as invaluable tools to help you navigate the challenges of moving with grace and resilience. Here’s how incorporating these practices into your moving toolkit can make a world of difference:

1. Morning Meditation

Before diving into the day’s tasks, take a few minutes to practice a morning meditation. Wake up a little earlier to incorporate this into your day. This practice sets a peaceful tone and cultivates a mindset of clarity and focus, essential for tackling the many decisions and actions involved in moving.

2. Mindful Movement

As you navigate the physical demands of packing and organising, practice mindful movement like yoga or stretching into your routine. Not only does this help alleviate physical tension and discomfort, but it also allows you to connect with your body and find moments of peace in the middle of all the busyness.

3. Nature Breaks

Amidst the hustle and bustle of moving logistics, schedule short breaks to step outside and immerse yourself in nature. Whether it’s a brief walk in the park or a moment of quiet contemplation in your backyard, spending time in nature rejuvenates the spirit and provides much-needed perspective during times of stress.

4. Gratitude Practice

While packing boxes and coordinating logistics, take a pause to cultivate gratitude for the abundance in your life. Reflect on the support of loved ones, the opportunity for a fresh start, and the countless blessings surrounding you. This gratitude practice shifts your focus from chaos to contentment, fostering a sense of peace and positivity amidst the upheaval of moving.

5. Unplugging

In the age of constant connectivity, intentionally disconnecting from screens and technology is essential for preserving your mental and emotional well-being. Set boundaries around your screen time and designate periods of the day for digital detox. This allows you to recharge and reconnect with yourself, free from the distractions of emails and notifications.

6. Get Help

Whether it’s splurging a bit for a packing service if it fits your budget or opting for pizza delivery to spare yourself the hassle of cooking, finding ways to ease the stress of life is key. Reclaiming time and minimizing overwhelm, allows you time back and makes a move less stressful.

7. Evening Reflection

Before winding down for the night, take time to reflect on the day’s events and acknowledge your experiences, both challenges and triumphs. This practice of evening reflection brings closure to the day and prepares you for restful sleep, ensuring you wake up refreshed and ready to tackle whatever lies ahead.

Moving Onwards and Upwards:

Yes, moving is tough. But as women over 50, we’ve faced challenges before, and we’ve emerged stronger. So, take a deep breath, pack your resilience, and remember: you are capable, adaptable, and ready to conquer this mountain, flip-flops and all.

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About me

Turning 50 was an unexpected wake-up call. Panic surged through every fibre of my being as I wondered, “Is my youth slipping away, leaving me behind”.

Standing at the crossroads, I realized I wasn’t alone in this whirlwind of emotions. Many women over 50 experience similar moments of self-doubt and apprehension. The truth is our bodies and minds undergo natural changes as we age. It’s essential to remember that ageing is a privilege denied to many, and instead of fearing it, we must embrace a healthy and happy lifestyle over 50.

Using the advice we share in this blog, many women, including me, have found relief and are better able to manage this transition of life and feel more fulfilled both at home, and at work.

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