After the excitement and chaos of the boxes, the moving trucks, and the Nesting Phase, something a little more subtle and serious can creep in and bring a darker color to your new home: post-relocation sorrow, or in some cases, depression. There’s no question that change is a difficult thing, and we humans can sometimes struggle to find healthy, constructive coping mechanisms to help ease us through the bumps of moving to a new city. So in order to help your moving process to be an enjoyable one focused on new opportunities, here are few tips to help you prevent or deal with post-relocation depression.
Get out and get to know your new home
Moving to a new apartment can bring the temptation to spend an awful lot of time sitting at home, reorganizing your closets and alphabetizing your DVD collection. But the sooner you get out, get a sense of your new surrounding neighborhood, and start to meet new people, the sooner it’ll feel like you’re not just setting up a new apartment, you’re setting up a new life. Find out if your neighborhood has an events calendar and make an effort to attend things happening near you. Work up all the courage you have to introduce yourself to your new neighbors and ask them to show you around. If you aren’t sure how to meet new people, practice your enthusiastic YES! when others ask you to join in an activity, and cultivate your sense of belonging.
Keep learning and keep yourself active
Nothing helps keep the sadness at bay like turning your energies in a new direction while you’re settling in a new community. If you’ve been in the market for a pet, this might be a great time to visit the adoption shelters. Or perhaps you’ve been meaning to take up blacksmithing, or knitting, or yoga — go out on a limb, sign up for a class, and make a point to introduce yourself to new people while you’re there. If you’re a young professional, find some networking events to help you meet people in your field. Making new friends means getting yourself out there.
Call on old friends and networks
There will be days when calling up your loved ones or best friends from your previous home might be exactly the remedy you need. Before relocating to your new home, be sure you have everyone’s contact details, including addresses. If you’re particularly worried you’ll miss your friends, set up a little mail date to send one another postcards and letters. Mailbox surprises at your new address can bring some sunshine to an otherwise challenging scenario. Get your internet situation squared away quickly so that you can set up Skype or FaceTime dates too, but beware the temptation to spend too much time at home in front of the computer. After all, you want to build a new community in your new city!
Bring along your favorite keepsakes or reminders from your old house
Some folks like to frame a map of their old city or if you’re moving long distance, their old state. It can provide a reminder of the place you love, help add a little color to your walls, and make for some good storytelling when your new friends stop by for a visit. If you have family heirlooms or your favorite decorations from your old home, put them somewhere prominent so they can lend a sense of connection and home to your new place. Remember you’re not trying to replicate your previous abode — but to bring a feeling of comfort and familiarity to your new space!
It’s well documented in the psychological field that significant change like moving away from friends and family to start a life in a new place can be stressful and, in some cases, traumatic. If you’re feeling like you’re falling into a deeper place of sorrow or depression, seek professional help from a counselor or therapist. She or he can offer you support and guidance while you navigate your transition and make sure you come out to a joyful sense of excitement and home on the other side.
Find out more about Unpakt’s Long Distance Moving Companies for a seamless move.