About two years ago, I “found” Marie Kondo and her mega-bestseller The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up.
As with most things, the concept is not that hard to grasp.
Start with the easiest stuff (clothes), throw them all on the ground, and get rid of things that don’t make you feel good.
Move to other stuff, then other stuff, making sure that you have one place in your house for each thing, and ultimately get rid of lots and lots of things.
The magic is in the execution, as is the challenge.
That said, as with many things, I dove headlong into the book, and Kondo’s process and quickly found myself with 40 bags of items to donate to Goodwill.
It felt amazing.
I did my share of evangelizing, and on a regularly have the privilege of helping people move forward into the next chapter of their lives- which often allows me to recommend decluttering or staging.
My psychology minor comes into good use at these times; I have found that the inertia of keeping things as they are is often the biggest impediment to decluttering an apartment, even if people would love to have less stuff, and on a rational level understand that their stuff is in the way.
But people are generally far less rational than they are afraid of change.
But my job is to help them move into action, to help them see what their future looks like (in a new apartment or house).
Selling an apartment can often be a very effective catalyst to change.
Though not always.
I have worked with people on the edge of a hoarding diagnosis.
Very little decluttering success in those cases.
But I’ve digressed.
Let’s introduce our guest blogger for the month, Miles Cutler of Morris Moving.
Try to imagine starting a moving company in 1898, before cars were invented, certainly before moving trucks and vans came into being.
Morris Moving, based in Mount Vernon was founded during the Spanish-American War!
I mean, come on!
Morris Moving was in business when May 1st was the only day of the year (!) that you were allowed to move in New York City (a vestige of the Dutch).
Imagine the smell of horses shlepping all that stuff.
Certainly, very little furniture was moving around at the time- probably too much of a challenge- so people lived in furnished apartments, and didn’t have a lot of stuff, I suppose.
And since closets counted as rooms, which caused taxes to go up, early apartments weren’t built with them, either. Hence, wardrobes, and armoires.
But still, I digress.
Morris Moving was in business for 40+ years before this once-a-year moving thing was eradicated.
4 generations later, they are still at it, transitioning into a white-glove service model, equipped to handle high-end moves inside Manhattan, into the suburbs, or across the country, with crews that have been moving people for 20 years or more.
Miles has a few tips for you:
- Don’t pack yourself!
Packing is easily one of the hardest, most time-consuming, and riskiest parts of the relocation process. If your items aren’t packed carefully, delicates and valuables might be broken or damaged.
Think twice or three times about packing yourself.
And before you do anything…
We can’t stress enough the value of Decluttering and Organizing.
If you’re like most people, you have way more stuff than you should. If you can look at something and say, “I haven’t even thought about that for years”, it’s likely time to amicably part ways. It’s a difficult step, parting with things we’ve come to recognize. But, especially in cramped New York apartments, it’ll be easier for us to get to the items to be packed, and it’ll also be less for us to pack, which saves you time. Purging the unnecessary also helps you start fresh in your new home.
Take an inventory of your belongings, so organizing your movers and yourselves during and after the move are a breeze.
Often, when we do an an estimate, our clients tell
us what they were and were not planning on having us pack. Be sure to write those items on a list so you can easily tell our movers what you don’t want packed. Also, be sure you have an inventory of all of the things in your house. Better yet, keep them organized by room they are going to in the new home. Trust us, it’ll help immensely when unpacking.
In addition, be sure to keep important documents, electronics, medications, and other essentials with you in a personal bag. Otherwise, it’ll be nearly impossible to retrieve them until we’ve reached your new home.
- Be Prepared for Stress!
Even the most put-together clients become piles of mush during moving day.
This will happen to you.
Moving is one of the top 3 most stressful things you can do to yourself (other than divorce and dealing with the deal of a loved one).
If Scott has helped you sell your apartment, or you’re moving into a gorgeous new place that you just bought, be prepared for stress.
If Decluttering and Organizing really aren’t your thing, and the idea of sorting your stuff sends shivers down your spine, may we suggest a Professional Organizer? They are the experts in helping people create a packing/ moving game plan. We (and Scott) have wonderful relationships with the best Professional Organizers NYC has to offer. Feel free to reach out to us for a referral to one.______________________________________
Miles and his seasoned team of movers are AMAZING.
You can reach out to him at 201-289-1626 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org! They’ll be happy to guide you through the entire process.
Though, I’ll be here, too!
Thanks to Miles and his team for the guest blog post! -Scott