Post-Move Blues: Why You Have Them and What You Can Do About Them

You’ve just embarked on a great adventure. You’ve left the community you know behind and stepped out into the unknown. You’ll get to meet new people, see new marvels, and make new memories. You can’t wait to decorate your new house, landscape your new yard, and join new fitness classes or book clubs. Perhaps you have a shining career change waiting for you on the other side of relocation.

You couldn’t have more going for you. So why do you feel stressed, anxious, or even frightened? You may even feel a deep-seated ache that borders on depression. And at the same time, you also feel guilty because you know you have much to be grateful for-you don’t have room to complain, right?

Wrong. You feel valid-and normal-emotions. Many people feel anxious, stressed, and sad after they move. To recover, you just have to determine why you feel the way you do, and then you can use activities and other tools to boost your mood.

Why a Move Brings on the Blues
A move can make you feel blue for any number of reasons. Common reasons include:

•    You relocated because of a stressful situation, like a lost job or a death in the family. You may have also lost your home to a bankruptcy or a disaster. Divorce often leads to relocation as well.
•    You have left your support system behind. Your support system consists of your family and close friends, as well as anyone you interact with in your community. Your church or other organizations could also count as your support system. Without this system, you can feel vulnerable. You’ll also miss your friends and family members, no matter how independent or adventurous you consider yourself.
•    You feel confused and lost because of the new culture in your area. Even if you anticipate cultural differences before your relocation, they may still shock and frustrate you. You will not feel as comfortable among the unfamiliar as you did in your old community.

No one expects you to adjust to your new life instantly, even if you move somewhere exotic like the Caribbean. But if you pinpoint why you feel blue after your move, you can move on to the list of cures below to try to lift your spirits.

How to Dispel Those Blues
None of the strategies below give you an instant cure. Your recovery may take a long time. It may take months or even years. But the tips below can distract you from your sorrows and help you have a more positive attitude while you adjust.

Keep in Touch With Your Family and Friends
Just because you no longer live near your support system doesn’t mean you have to live without it. Those people still care about you, and they want to help you feel happy. They’ll tell you about the happy things that have happened in their lives, and they’ll want to hear the same thing from you. But they will also help you if you need someone to listen while you cry.

Find a Way to Meet New People
A listening ear and a few kind words don’t usually do as much as a physical hug. You need to build a new support group-and while you won’t have one instantly, you can start making new friends. Meet your neighbors. Say hello to people at the grocery store. Join a church congregation, a club, a fitness class, or some other organization. You’ll start building a support system pretty quickly.

Re-Create Your Old Routine
Routine reassures your brain that you haven’t landed on an alien planet. It surrounds you with the familiar and helps you feel more centered. So stick to your routine as closely as possible. Get up and run errands at the same time you would normally do so. If you used to exercise, do that at the same you used to as well.

Watch Funny Things, Play Games, or Read Uplifting Books
Fun and humorous things will distract your mind and build pleasant memories in your new space. Watch funny videos and movies, play games with your family (or by yourself), read, or express yourself artistically. You’ll see your mood improve in no time.

You don’t have to feel sad or overwhelmed because you relocated to a new area. For more tips you can use after your move, check out the rest of our blog.