Moving with Kids – Empire Movers’ Tips August 1, 2013
Moving can be a hectic and stressful enough experience. It doesn’t matter whether you’re just moving across town, across the state, or to the other end of the country, moving involves wrapping your mind around many small details and schedules. It can all easily add up to a lot of stress. If you have young kids, moving can become extra stressful. To make your move less stressful on yourself and your kids, you need to have the right preparation. Keep the following tips in mind so you can have calm, easy move with your children.
Keep your kids in the loop
Explain to your kids what will happen and why you will be moving. Give them enough details and information so they know what to expect. Don’t let the move take them by surprise. By sitting them down and explaining your move in clear and easy to understand terms, you help set them at ease. When they expect the move and have some idea as to what to expect before, during, and after the move, chances are they would be calmer and less stressed.
Let your kids help out with the move
One of the biggest causes of stress is the underlying feeling that one has no control over what’s happening. Things are happening to you instead of you having a hand in what is happening. This is true for both adults and children. When you let your kids help out with the move by giving them a small role or a set of small tasks like packing and/or labeling, they feel they are part of what’s happening instead of being swept along by circumstances. Instead of feeling helpless or ‘just along for the ride,’ they actually begin to feel like they are participating in something big. This is an important mind shift from a negative helplessness or passivity to positive participation in a grand adventure. This shift can convert your move from something to be feared or avoided to something fun and exciting. Letting your kids help out and even plan some parts of the move go a long way in addressing some of their understandable apprehension.
Clearly mark the transition
Psychologically speaking, stress and angst tend to build up if there are no clear transitions involving important events. Since moving from a neighborhood they may have set down roots in might stress your children, throw a going away party and invite all their friends. This marks a clear delineation between the experience of living at your old place and moving away. The party doesn’t have to be a block party or anything grand. A simple get together can do the job. The key is to make it clear to all participants that the transition is real, the transition is coming, and that it isn’t anything negative. Instead of unresolved separation anxiety and a feeling of rootlessness, your children can clearly see the transition and celebrate it instead of fearing it. Not only will such small ‘transition rituals’ help your kids when you have to move, it can actually train them to better cope with other major transitions in store for them throughout their lives.
Your kids are looking at you as their emotional anchor throughout the move. Don’t show signs of cracking because you act as their reference point. Your actions, responses, and overall attitude are their guides on how to handle and respond to the move. At the very least, don’t let your kids see you get upset. Sure, many things can go wrong but you have to keep your cool in front of the kids. If anything, you should look at this whole experience as a great exercise in emotional self-control, proper time management, and pacing your activities.
Prepare games for your move
To minimize stress during your move, you need to pack some group games or research some verbal games you can play with your kids. As much as possible, don’t rely too heavily on game apps on tablets or mobile devices. These games are solo games. You don’t want your kids to cope with the move on a solo basis. Instead, involve the whole family. Play age-appropriate group games that engage your children on a social, emotional, and intellectual level. When they are having a good time with you, they aren’t thinking of the move. More importantly, they never feel alone and always feel connected as part of a larger family enterprise.
By making your move a family adventure, your kids can make the transition to your new location better. Not only will they be less stressed during the move, they might have fond memories of your adventure together as well as learn proper coping skills. It all depends on how you frame their overall experience. When you need a reliable New York moving company to help you simplify your moving experience, make sureyou give Empire Movers a call.