April 28, 2023 Posted in Coping with Relocation
Milly Andrews

Born and raised in Portland, Milly has had a lot of experience moving and writing about the relocation process.

How Stressful Is Moving Across the Country

Moving cross-country is often regarded as one of life’s most significant and transformative experiences – but how stressful is moving actually? Beneath the thrill of a new adventure lies a more complex reality of the stress that accompanies such a monumental transition. In this blog post, we will explain various factors that contribute to the stress of interstate relocation and provide practical tips and insights to help you navigate this life-changing journey with greater ease and confidence.

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Is it possible to overcome the relocation stress? Absolutely - just follow our tips

Relocating across the country can be incredibly stressful, as it involves not only logistical challenges such as packing, transportation, and finding a new home but also emotional factors like leaving behind familiar surroundings, adjusting to a new environment, and forming new social connections. The stress level can vary from person to person, depending on individual circumstances, coping strategies, and support systems. While the excitement of starting anew can be invigorating, it is important to acknowledge the potential stressors and take proactive steps to manage them effectively, ensuring a smoother and more positive relocation experience.

Why Is Moving Stressful?

Relocation to a new city is often considered a highly stressful event due to a combination of factors that can have both logistical and emotional implications. So, why is moving stressful? Here are some of the most common reasons:

  • Planning and organization – relocating involves a significant amount of planning and organization, from decluttering and packing up belongings to coordinating the transportation of household items. This process can be time-consuming and mentally taxing, as it requires attention to detail and the ability to juggle multiple tasks simultaneously.
  • Financial strain – organizing a relocation can be expensive, with costs including getting a cross-country moving service or renting a truck, purchasing packing materials, and potentially paying for temporary accommodations.
  • Emotional upheaval – leaving behind familiar surroundings and relocating away from family and friends can be emotionally challenging.
  • Disruption of routines – relocation disrupts daily routines and established patterns, which can create feelings of disorientation and instability.
  • Adapting to a new environment – adjusting to a new location involves stressful tasks such as navigating an unfamiliar area, acclimating to new cultural norms, and potentially experiencing a change in climate or lifestyle.
  • Job or school changes – if the relocation involves a new job or school, this can introduce additional stress, as individuals must adjust to new expectations, responsibilities, and social dynamics.

While relocation is a traumatic experience for many, recognizing the sources of stress and implementing coping strategies can help you deal with this life change successfully.

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Planning the Move Is the First Step in Managing the Stress

Planning the relocation is the first and most crucial step in managing the stress associated with relocating. A well-thought-out plan can help alleviate many potential stressors and pave the way for a smoother transition to your new home.

The planning process entails several key components. First, creating a timeline is essential in order to efficiently allocate time and resources for each aspect of the relocation. This timeline should include important milestones such as budgeting, decluttering, packing, notifying relevant parties of the address change, and making arrangements for housing and transportation.

Relocation is considered the third most stressful life experience - it comes right after the death of a loved one, divorce, and job loss

Arranging transportation for your belongings is another key aspect of planning a relocation. Whether you want to choose between cross-country moving companies or rent a truck, it is essential to research your options and make arrangements well in advance to avoid last-minute complications. To manage moving and stress successfully, it is also important to make a relocation checklist and break the planning process into smaller, manageable tasks and tackle them one at a time.

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A well-planned relocation is bound to reduce the stress and anxiety that come with the move

There Are Ways of Dealing With Emotional Stress

The emotional stress involved in interstate relocation is a significant aspect of the process and should not be overlooked. Leaving behind familiar surroundings, cherished memories, and established social connections can evoke a range of emotions, from sadness and anxiety to grief and loneliness. It is important to acknowledge these emotions and adopt coping strategies to manage them.

How to Cope With Emotional Stress During a Move?

One effective way of dealing with emotional stress is to maintain open communication with friends and family. Sharing your feelings and experiences with loved ones can provide much-needed emotional support and help you feel connected, even if you are physically distant. Additionally, using technology to maintain regular contact with those left behind can ease feelings of isolation and help you cope with nostalgia.

Creating opportunities for closure before you relocate is another valuable strategy for managing emotional stress. This may involve visiting meaningful places one last time, spending quality time with close friends and family, or holding a relocation party.

Embracing the excitement of exploring a new city, meeting new people, and experiencing new cultures can shift your perspective and encourage a more optimistic attitude, as well. Setting personal goals and envisioning the opportunities that lie ahead can further inspire a sense of enthusiasm and motivation.

Lastly, note that establishing new connections and building a support network in your new environment is essential for managing emotional stress. If you’re not certain how to meet new people once you relocate and make meaningful connections, check out some advice from the video below:

Financial Stress Can Also Happen During the Relocation

Financial stress is yet another inevitable aspect of relocating across the country, as the process often involves a multitude of expenses that can quickly add up. Managing the financial aspects of relocation is crucial in minimizing stress and ensuring a successful transition to your new home.

One of the primary costs associated with relocation is transportation. This includes hiring long-distance movers or renting a truck, as well as the cost of gas, tolls, and potentially storage services during the journey. Additionally, there may be costs related to insuring your belongings during transit, particularly if you are transporting valuable or fragile items.

Housing expenses are another significant factor that makes moving a stressful life event. These can include rental fees or mortgage payments, security deposits, and application fees. At the same time, it is crucial to factor in the potential need for new furniture or household items to accommodate the layout or size of your new living space.

How to Manage Financial Stress During a Move?

To mitigate the financial stress involved in the relocation, it is essential to create a comprehensive budget that outlines all anticipated expenses. This will not only help you avoid unexpected costs but also allow you to identify areas where you can potentially save money and reduce relocation costs.

Researching and comparing different services can help you make informed decisions and secure the best possible deals. At the same time, if your relocation involves a change in the cost of living, it is important to take into account potential fluctuations in housing costs, utilities, or grocery prices. Make sure to use websites such as Numbeo to compare the living expenses in your current and future location.

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There are strategies that can help you deal with finances as a stressor during the relocation

You Can Hire Cross-Country Movers and Avoid Physical Stress

The physical demands of packing and unpacking are significant, particularly when dealing with large, heavy, or fragile items. Bending, lifting, and carrying objects can strain muscles and joints, potentially leading to injuries if proper precautions are not taken. Moreover, the process of disassembling and reassembling furniture can be both time-consuming and physically challenging.

Hiring professional movers, such as Cross Country Moving Company, can alleviate much of the physical stress associated with the relocation. These experts have the necessary equipment, experience, and knowledge to efficiently pack, transport, and unpack your belongings, ensuring they arrive at your new home in good condition. Additionally, professional movers are skilled in handling bulky, delicate, or valuable items, providing you with peace of mind and reducing the risk of damage or injury.

Use More Than One Cross-Country Moving Service and Move Without a Fuss

Utilizing multiple relocation services from a long-distance moving company can reduce the stress and fuss associated with relocating. By leveraging the expertise and resources professionals can offer, you can ensure a more efficient, secure, and hassle-free relocation.

Some cross-country moving services you may consider using in combination are professional auto transport, storage, and packing services, as well as specialty services such as custom crating. Combining them will allow you to tailor your relocation to your specific needs and preferences, ensuring a smoother and less stressful relocation experience.

Dealing With Unexpected Challenges Can Be Stressful as Well

Despite organizing and planning, unforeseen obstacles or complications may arise. Knowing how to handle these challenges effectively can make a significant difference in your overall relocation experience.

Delays in transportation, weather disruptions, or logistical issues can affect your timeline. To manage these delays, maintain open communication with your company and be prepared to adjust your plans accordingly. Having a flexible mindset and a backup plan can help you adapt to unforeseen circumstances more easily.

On the other hand, misplaced or lost belongings can be a source of considerable stress during a relocation. To minimize the risk of losing items, create a relocation inventory of your belongings before packing, and label boxes clearly with their contents and intended room. In case of lost items, contact your company immediately to initiate a search and explore potential compensation.

Finally, unanticipated changes in plans, such as issues with housing or job arrangements, can disrupt your relocation process, as well. It is essential to have a contingency plan in place to address such challenges. This may involve securing temporary housing, updating your timeline, or revising your budget.

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Being open to adjusting your plans can enable you to find solutions more effectively

How Stressful Is Moving – Knowing This Doesn’t Mean It Is Not Worth the Trouble

While it is undeniable that cross-country relocation can be a stressful endeavor, it is essential to remember that it can also be a rewarding experience. By understanding the potential challenges, you can take steps to manage and deal with stressors appropriately. Embrace the opportunity for growth, new experiences, and fresh beginnings that an interstate move can offer, and you will find that the benefits can far outweigh the challenges. And once you gather your courage and start planning the relocation, make sure to contact us to secure a positive and worry-free relocation experience.


Why Is Moving Across the Country So Stressful?

Relocating to a new state can be stressful due to the significant life changes it entails, including leaving behind familiar surroundings, adjusting to a new environment, and managing the logistical and financial aspects of the relocation. Additionally, the physical demands of packing and transporting belongings, along with the emotional strain of saying goodbye to loved ones, can contribute to the relocation stress.

What Are Some of the Factors That Contribute to the Stress of Moving?

Factors that contribute to relocation stress include logistical challenges, financial concerns, emotional attachments to your current home, adapting to a new community, and physical demands of the relocation process. The uncertainty and unpredictability associated with such a significant life change can amplify the stress.

How Can I Manage the Emotional Stress of Relocating Across the Country?

To manage the anxiety about the relocation, prioritize self-care, maintain a positive mindset, and stay connected with loved ones. Additionally, engage in stress-reducing activities like exercise, meditation, or journaling, and focus on the opportunities and relocation benefits that come with the move.

What Are Some of the Financial Stresses Associated With Moving?

Financial stresses associated with organizing a relocation include the cost of hiring cross-country movers, transportation expenses, housing costs, deposits for utilities, and potential income loss during the transition. These expenses can add up quickly, causing financial strain.

How Can I Manage the Financial Stress of Moving?

To manage financial stress, create a detailed relocation budget, research affordable transportation options, and try to save money in advance. Consider selling or donating items you don’t want to keep when relocating to reduce costs and seek out financial assistance or discounts where available.

What Are Some Physical Stressors Involved in Moving Across the Country?

Physical stressors involved in planning a relocation to another city include packing, lifting heavy objects, loading and unloading belongings, and the possibility of getting injured. Additionally, the fatigue associated with long hours of relocation day preparation and travel can contribute to physical stress.

How Can I Manage the Physical Stress of Moving?

To manage the physical stress, start preparing early, break tasks into smaller steps, and ask for help from friends or get long-distance moving services. Practice proper lifting techniques, use appropriate relocation equipment, and make sure to get enough rest during the process.

What Unexpected Challenges Can Arise During a Move?

Unexpected challenges that can occur when relocating to a new home can include weather-related delays, damaged or lost belongings, unforeseen expenses, difficulty finding housing or employment, and unexpected emotional reactions to the change.

How Can I Prepare for Unexpected Challenges During a Move?

To prepare for a relocation completely, create a contingency plan, set aside an emergency fund, research your new location thoroughly, and maintain open communication with your support network. Flexibility and adaptability are crucial in navigating unforeseen obstacles.

Are There Any Benefits to Relocating Across the Country That Can Offset the Stress?

Despite the stress, relocating across the country offers benefits such as personal growth, new experiences, opportunities for career advancement, and the chance to expand your social circle. Embracing these benefits can help offset the stress and make the move a positive, life-changing experience.


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