Moving is a stressful process in and of itself, regardless of the reason behind it. But when it’s tied to a less-than-happy life event like the end of a union or the loss of a loved one, the dial can get turned up to eleven. Here at Box Ox Moving, we’ve overseen our fair share of moves under all sorts of circumstances, and we’ve uncovered some universal truths that may prove helpful if you’re moving after a divorce or breakup.
Make long-term commitments
For some, it’s second nature to make bold, brash decisions in the wake of a painful life event. But when it comes to committing yourself to a long-term financial commitment, the aftermath of a breakup or divorce may not be the best time to plunk down a wad of cash and get tethered to an expensive new home. If you’re leaving the home you shared with your significant other, a short-term (or even month-to-month) lease might be the best option to consider while you get through the first phase of being apart. Plenty of resources exist (like this, this and this) to help you figure out where to bide your time until you’re ready to take a bigger step with a new mortgage or long-term lease.
Go too far away
It’s tempting to cut ties and go on a far-flung adventure, starting fresh and leaving it all behind, but let’s be honest: life’s not like the movies. While a clean slate may eventually be just what the doctor ordered, for the time being it’s important to have lots of emotional support, and moving to a new city may actually prolong the healing process. The newness of an unfamiliar place can be invigorating at first, but the isolation that comes with it can make for a pretty swift comedown once reality sets in. And especially where children are involved, a well-thought-out plan needs to be set in place far in advance of a relocation — one that holds the kiddos’ best interests in high regard. So, bide your time before you set off into the great blue yonder and start the next chapter of your life. Spend whatever time you need to grieve the end of the relationship; be available for whatever loose ends need to be tied up with divorce proceedings, child custody agreements and the like; and do yourself a solid by not completely upending your life in the middle of it all. There’ll be time for new beginnings soon enough.
Redefine your sense of home
If you’re staying behind in the home you once shared with someone, now’s a fantastic time to make it completely yours. While the divorce process and/or the transition to paying all the bills yourself (if you were sharing them previously) can be expensive, a little goes a long way when it comes to making your surroundings as comforting as possible. A fresh coat of paint, for example, may not solve all of life’s problems, but in a small way, it can signify a moment of reclaiming something for yourself, and of making a decision based purely on what you want.
If you’re moving to a new place, give yourself permission to take pleasure in decorating it with things that bring you joy. As strange as it might sound, making your space completely your own can actually be empowering. And even if you’ve just signed a short-term apartment lease and don’t plan on staying there for long, the space itself doesn’t have to feel like a compromise. A few simple short-term decorating tips can help you make it feel more like home without biting into your security deposit — or your bank account.
Take the time you need
Regardless of what anyone tells you, there’s no magic time frame for getting over a relationship. If you’re able to move on quickly, great. If it takes longer than you’d hoped, that’s okay too. If a few months go by and you’re ready to set down more permanent roots in a place that feels comfortable to you, go for it. If you need to renew that lease until you figure out what’s next, that’s perfectly fine too. Only you know what feels best for you, and how you choose to take your next step in life is up to you and you alone.
When the time comes to pack up your stuff and move on to whatever’s next, Box Ox Moving can help ease the stress of the move. Because technology is awesome, and it’s just like the late, great Albert Einstein once said: “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”