Moving? Don't Leave Without Doing These 7 Things
According to science, moving ranks among the top five most stressful experiences in life. The emotional disrupt that occurs from relocating is a well-documented and widely commiserated human experience, but packing up and schlepping all your belongings from one place to the next also has a ripple effect on your mood. To get some practical tools for staying sane through the process, we tapped Reiki Master and energy healer Jenni Finley, who broke down exactly what makes the process so stressful. From meditation techniques to décor suggestions, get ready for the full download on how to free your mind and confidently move in a new direction—sans drama.
So what makes moving such a stress fest? According to Finley, it’s an inability to truly move on from the past. “From a Toltec [Mesoamerican] perspective, most people have 70% to 90% of their energy attached to the past. When you live like that, you don’t have energy available to put into your future. You may not even have the energy to create what you’re going for in the present,” she says. “Your mind and your spirit can become attached to a particular point of view. Most people don’t relate to themselves that way. The reality is we are energetic beings. You want as much of your energy available and powerful with you. If your energy is tied to a place or time in the past, it can be difficult to be fully present. By declaring a space complete when you move out, you’re able to actually move on to a different spot in your life.”
The first step is to physically make sure all your belongings are out of the space, recommends Finley. Once you’re fully packed, she says, perform a brief meditation. Find a quiet place and mentally cull your energy from the space.
“Envision your energy is a particular color, and call it back to you,” she says. “In doing this, you create the belief that when you call your energy back, it returns. Since it is your energy, it returns right away. Inhale positive energy in, and exhale any non-useful energy out. You might even do a sweeping motion with your hands, pulling your hands toward you as though physically calling your energy inward. Because it’s energetic, not physical, once you say it, it happens. It’s like calling a dog. You just whistle it back.”
Reclaiming your good vibes is a simple act, says Finley. “You say, ‘I’m gathering all my energy and I take it with me. It’s complete. I’m done.’ You also don’t want to be corded to whatever new energy is coming into the space you are moving out of,” she adds. “Without declaring the space complete, you may have an open channel to whoever else is going to live there now. It’s courteous for the next person since they are now walking into a clear space. Part of it is for your benefit, and the other part is being compassionate and generous for the next tenant.”
After you’ve completed your meditation, sage the space as a cleansing ritual. Finley also recommends this as a first step before moving into any new home. “Smoke clears energy,” she tells us. “Because we are such physical beings, for most people, unless you are used to meditating and dealing with energy all the time, doing something physical to create the ritual of moving energy is great. It tells your subconscious mind that it is real. Besides the fact that smoke actually does clear energy, doing something physically, having the physical representation of smoke makes the process resonate more,” she says. “It’s why the Native Americans did a rain dance. It was something physical they did to produce energy and pull something in energetically.” Saging the space as a ritual reinforces the belief and produces the result of your energy leaving.
“Our things that we carry around with us have the capacity to hold energy, like an open container. Most people have had the experience of ‘That gives me the creeps; it used to belong to my ex-boyfriend.’ It’s that phenomenon that there is something weird about an object. There is energy attached to it. You can clear it by simply asking it to leave. There are so many different ways to clear energy. Sage is easy,” she adds.
Moving is the perfect opportunity to organize and purge. Edit down your possessions, and ditch anything that isn’t truly of value.
“Think of the things that you own as thoughts and ideas. If your space is filled with many different thoughts, ideas, and experiences, it can be hard to focus because there is too much stuff going on. It’s like when 40 people start talking at once and you say, ‘Hold on. One at a time.’ When you organize your clutter, you are being particular with which ideas you are interacting with on a daily basis, which thoughts you are encountering, what kind of environment you are creating,” says Finley.
“There is something really great about cleanliness and order because it allows for new ideas to come in. Nothing new can come where there is no space. By decluttering your room or your space, you are allowing for new experiences, new ideas, and new energy.”
“When you enter the new space, the first thing that you are doing before your things go in is making sure that you are starting with a blank canvas,” she says of saging a new home. “You are inviting any energy that isn’t yours to leave so that you are coming in fresh.”
Take a thoughtful, strategic approach to unpacking, Finley says: “When you’re moving in, don’t just plop down all your boxes and clutter up your living room. Keep everything in the box and unpack it carefully. Most people, when they move, take all their stuff out haphazardly. From an energy standpoint, it’s better to be deliberate.”
Even a 10-minute-a-day meditation practice has been proven to alleviate stress and boost productivity levels. If you’re moving, Finley recommends starting regular, daily meditation process.
To increase focus, she suggests creating a sacred space in your new home, a mellow spot to meditate each day. “When you are wanting to call in or access sacred energy, the first thing you want to do is declare a sacred space,” she tells us. “An easy way to do that is to set the boundary with a meditation blanket, with the intention of the four corners of the blanket are the boundaries of the space. You want to create and relate to the space as sacred. This brings honor to your practice and allows for a particular energy to show up in that area every day.”
When it comes to décor, Finley recommends selecting art, colors, and furniture that embody the way you want to feel in the space. “I love having little visual cues that pull in experiences you’d like to repeat or experiences that you’d like to create,” she says. To get good vibes, pick a totem. “The idea behind a totem is that the animal or symbol is carrying a particular type of energy and strength with them,” she tells us. “By placing totems around a room, you are pulling in that energy or strength. Tigers, for example, are great for personal power. Penguins, an animal that pairs for life, might represent a beautiful, committed, and lasting relationship. Horses can signify a new journey or adventure. Using totem animals is a fun way to trigger energy.”
Or, she says, place books in the space that remind you of how you want to feel or act or be. “Litter your home with happy thoughts!” says Finley. “If you love France, have a picture of Paris! If you love to ski, have a photo of you skiing. Decide whom your role models are, and have little totems of them in your space. If it’s Einstein, have an Einstein figurine. Symbols have the power to cue you into peak state.”
Finley tells us there is one room in the house in particular that needs to be personal. “Especially in your bedroom, you want to walk into a lot of visual, happy thought cues,” she tells us. “You can use the things that are in your room to tell your subconscious mind to behave in a particular way. You want to place things that generate subconscious, positive thoughts.”
Shop energy-boosting home décor finds below. Have a tip for keeping it all together during a big move? We want to hear what helps you cope.