Don’t Neglect This One Thing When You Move, According to the Author of “How to Relocate”

published Jun 12, 2022
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Young woman hanging framed picture on wall near boyfriend during relocation into new apartment
Credit: BONNINSTUDIO/Stocksy

My family and I made an interstate move just last week, so I have a pretty good idea of what’s involved in relocating. While everyone’s story is unique, the tumultuous process that often leads to a big move — the anticipation, the heart-rending goodbyes, the practical details like hiring movers and packing — are all real and raw in my own life right now. 

And I know there’s so much ahead for my family, too. There’s the good stuff, of course, but also all the new things we have to get used to: figuring out the best routes to school, finding new doctors, and making friends in our new community.

Natalie Trice’s upcoming book, “How to Relocate,” covers all of these kinds of topics. “While moving won’t change who you are, it can give you the space and freedom to be who you want to be and allow you to finally live a life you love,” reads the book’s description. Trice acknowledges the struggle between a deep sense that you need to move somewhere else and the daunting prospect of both upsetting the people in your life and undertaking all the work involved in moving. 

I reached out to Trice to ask her to distill her advice into the number one thing to keep in mind while moving and relocating. Her answer gets to the heart of the matter pretty decisively.

“My one tip for relocating is to take your time and do what is right for you,” she says.

Moving where and when is right for you and your family involves an inner journey as well — one that isn’t only or even primarily sunshine and rainbows. Instead, as Trice doesn’t shy away from mentioning, moving involves a “messy process that causes sleepless nights and arguments with loved ones.” But she reminds readers that “life is short” and that “living in the right place is fundamental for happiness.” 

The most important part of doing “what is right for you” is not neglecting taking care of yourself in the process. This doesn’t mean massages and pedicures once the moving boxes are emptied; it means that you can’t expect that a change of locale alone will fix your life. 

Trice puts it this way: 

“If we don’t unpack some of our stuff, learn to put it down and let it go, we can move to the most stunning tropical island in the world and still not feel settled, not feel good enough, successful enough, or wealthy enough,” she says. “Moving from one place to another isn’t going to change who you are, so please don’t think that will happen; you’ve got to do the inner work and relocate for all the parts of the puzzle to come together.”

In other words, take the time to make sure that the person going to the new place (that’s you!) is ready for the new life that’s waiting to be had.