When someone says “moving”, many react with dread. Whether you have made a move yourself or not, the concept is met with trepidation. But why all the fuss? Research is inconclusive on just where moving stress fits in the rankings of life stress. The only “concrete” evidence comes from the multitude of people who have moved and admit that they dread the process and found it stressful. There might be a few reasons why the moving process causes stress.


Moving is expensive. There is really no way around this. Yes, you will have costs directly associated with the physical relocation of your goods. Whether you hire movers or go it on your own, you still will have to pay up. Full-service movers are expensive, but so is getting packing materials and renting and driving a truck on your own. In addition to moving costs, you will be met with other charges that are indirectly related. You will have mortgage payments to make or have to navigate paying two rents while switching from one place to the other. The expenses that go into renting or owning a home or apartment far outweigh the one-time moving costs. However, when you are already dealing with those looming costs, being told you will have to shell out more to move will raise your blood pressure.

Emotional Strain

For many people, change is not something they look forward to. Even if you are making a local move, you still will need to adjust to a new house and new neighbors. Moves of longer distances add that much more challenge. You have made memories and grown attached to your home, even if you found yourself cursing it and any of its issues prior to moving. It is hard to let go of the familiar and step into the unknown. You have to retrain yourself to know all the little odds and ends of a new home, like just where utensils and light switches are. Other moves may have added stressors.  If a move is coming as a result of a relationship ending or a job change, you will be having more emotions to deal with from those stressors and then adding on any moving drama.


Even those who carefully plan for a move typically encounter at least a minor hiccup. The many moving parts that are involved in moving make it nearly impossible for everything to go perfectly smooth. You can’t find a box, or the mover is late, or you run out of packing tape. None of these scenarios will derail your move, but they will probably irritate you. For those who experience problems, the headache is that much worse. A truck breaks down, or you have to file a claim because something was broken. These scenarios are again not the end of the world but can impact your moving timeline and certainly the overall experience. And people are typically waiting for the shoe to drop when moving. Even if nothing went awry, you will probably work yourself up, at least a little, over the possibility of it.

Time Consuming

Moving requires a lot of time and a lot of planning. Even if only moving from a studio apartment, there are details you will need to iron out. And while all of this is time consuming, the stress of moving without advanced planning will probably be worse than the anxiety brought up while planning. However, it is still frustrating to have to research and plan your move. You would prefer to be out enjoying time with friends before you move, but instead are calling moving companies.  You have to allocate time for packing and cleaning. And even those who meticulously plan may find they underestimated the time and energy it would take to prepare to move.

It is important to note that everyone will handle moving stress differently. Depending on your situation and the support system you have surrounding you, you may find moving more or less of an ordeal. You may think you are prepared to handle the stress, only to find yourself an emotional mess. Or perhaps you work yourself up before the big day and find that all the worrying was for nothing. Moving will probably bring some stress. But it is important to remember that you are not alone in this process. Lean on friends and family to help you get to your new home and the exciting chapter you are beginning.

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