Not all moves are created equal. Sometimes a move is the result of a happy occurrence and sometimes not. Some moves are long in the planning and some must happen rather abruptly. Often moves are handled from start to finish by professionals, but others involve significant personal effort. Regardless of the impetus for your move or its practical aspects, the move will be smoother and settling into the new quarters will be enhanced, if you follow a few principles, collectively called “rightsizing”.
Rightsizing is a framework for thoughtfully examining how you want to live your life and for identifying which possessions will best feather your new nest. Rightsizing appreciates both the importance of practical necessities and the desire for treasured keepsakes.
In a nutshell, rightsizing is the critically important precursor to packing to move and getting organized in your new home. When you examine your life and all your stuff and are honest about what works and what doesn’t, you’re on the rightsizing path. When you ask and answer tough questions about why you’re hanging on to mountains of clutter, you’re rightsizing. When you do the math and admit that 5000 square feet of stuff won’t work in a 2000 square foot house, you’re rightsizing. When you deal with the psychology of clutter BEFORE you begin to pack, this is rightsizing.
Boxes, packing paper and bubble wrap are important but stocking up on these supplies should follow the soul-searching that rightsizing elicits, not precede it. Rightsizing is a way to rescue you from being a prisoner of your things when you settle into your new space.
If thoughtful decision-making is so important, what is the proper framework for dealing with your possessions in anticipation of a move?
Here are several possibilities:
Does the utility or joy derived from the item exceed the space it consumes and the maintenance it requires?
Am I holding on to this item only from a sense of obligation, sadness or guilt?
If I’ve ascribed great value to this item, am I curating it in a fashion consistent with that value?
The emotional barriers to rightsizing are usually far more challenging than the physical ones. Once the self-examination has been done, the nuts and bolts of packing are relatively simple. Rather than feeling totally overwhelmed by the magnitude of the process (which only invites procrastination), a move that STARTS with rightsizing can be seamless and successful, not only in the short run but for the long haul too.
When you rightsize, you will have already formulated priorities, explored options for putting treasured possessions front and center and found creative solutions for disposing of those things that no longer make sense in your life.
If you are open to the possibilities, you’ll discover that change can be liberating and energizing. So if a move is in your future, consider doing it the right (sized) way!
– By Robin McCoy