My recent move has been an opportunity to learn and be reminded of things I had learned but had forgotten.
I have a lot more than I thought: Things I treasure, stuff that I don’t use and possessions I don’t need anymore.
(Work: You have more resources than you are aware of.)
Taking inventory allows for triage: I have a clearer understanding of gaps between how I live my life and how I want to live my life. I don’t use my china and silver except for holidays but I cart it around with me because it has great sentimental value. When I use it, I remember all the holiday and special dinners the ‘good stuff’ has played a role in through the years. I remember choosing it when we got married. I remember how important it was for my mother to see that I would have it and carry on her tradition of special tableware for special meals. Resolved: If I’m going to keep it (I am) I will use it more often. Yes – our lives are more casual but the people around my table are special.
(Work: Take stock of what you have and how/if it’s being utilized effectively.)
Covid19 isn’t always: Due to the global pandemic, I don’t dress up, wear much jewelry or put on make up. But this pandemic will not last forever. I’ll keep the best – and donate the rest. After being homebound, it may be that what people wear will be different – different from before March 2020 and also different from home quarantine. Meeting people is hampered with masks and social distancing but being visible helps start the ‘getting to know your neighbor’ process.
(Work: What people call the ‘new normal’ is only ‘normal for now.’ Plan for what might happen next.)
Not everything works: A different house means a different space. Not everything fits. Some things won’t find a home.
(Work: Re-engineering may be required. Rather than cutting and pasting things together, start fresh and create something that works from scratch.)
A new place calls for different/modified habits: Habits create feelings of comfort and competence. New locations allow for (and sometimes demand) that new habits are created. I love reading the newspaper in the morning and have been a fan of the Baltimore Sun for the last 15 years. I now subscribe to the Washington Post which takes longer for me to read. Possible options include: getting up earlier to read more, just reading the headlines and first paragraphs, or reading sections of the paper throughout the day.
(Work: What skills does a new situation call for? Do you have them? How will you acquire them?)
Exploring is fun, educational, and frustrating: New stores can be energizing but their new layouts can be frustrating! Not all ACE hardware stores are the same and this new bagel place is amazing!
(Work: Be open to learning and all that comes with it – success and not-successful-yet!)
Someone lied: A new place is not as glorious as assumed. Previous owners did not clean like you do and there may be some deferred maintenance that required expenditures you not only had not planned for – it hadn’t even occurred to you (the light cover fell because there was nothing holding it in?!) Yes, it’s not that far to travel to that place you want to go but no one said anything about the bridge being closed down for an unknown reason for an unknown amount of time.
(Work: Rather than get angry, get going and get up to speed with the reality you are facing. You can lose precious time if you spend too much of it mourning what you had hoped for – that doesn’t exist.)
Pacing has value: The amount of boxes and packing paper seemed to double every time I turned around but eventually the number was reduced. I do not have to have things picture perfect after a couple of weeks (even if friends who have moved are revealing flawless new homes that look expertly curated) Some people tell me they waited a year before deciding on room paint colors and making major furniture purchases.
(Work: Be realistic about how long something will take. A general rule is to add 20% to the estimated time expected.)
New cast of characters: I knew from previous moves that I would be on the hunt for a new dentist, doctor, hairdresser, and barber (to name a few) but no one can predict how long it will take to find one you like, can afford, and who will take you.
(Work: Get comfortable making new friends and go out and make at least one new connection each week.)
I am fortunate: There are many problems in the world and in our country right now. I have rewarding work and amazing friends, a trusted partner, and good health. When I am sharing a meal around the table in my home with people I treasure, that’s home to me. (Work: After you assess the challenges, recognize what you value.)
There are other things I’ve learned in the last month but those are other blog posts!