Just the mere thought of having to pack for a move can be emotionally draining. Those brown boxes are staring at you in anticipation, but you are having a hard time mustering up the motivation to get packing. Out of all the tasks on your moving checklist, organizing your belongings into neatly packaged boxes isn’t exactly screaming ‘fun’ or ‘exciting.’ But, rest assured, you’re not alone. Most people tend to feel immensely unmotivated when it comes time to pack up. The good news is, there are several ways to reverse your mental state and fuel your desire to get started. Here’s how.

Create Smaller, Achievable Tasks

The prospect of packing up an entire home may seem like a daunting task. Since it seems like such a vast undertaking, it’s easy to feel discouraged about getting the ball rolling. Although packing to move does require time and effort, a mere shift in your mindset and approach can turn what seems like an overwhelming feat into a manageable one.

So, what’s the secret? It’s simple. All you need to do is break everything down and establish a list of smaller packing tasks that you can follow. Whether you reserve packing for the weekends or opt to chip away at the project bit by bit each day, by organizing what you need to accomplish into more digestible and easy-to-handle tasks, you’ll find the whole ordeal a lot easier to manage.

Every time you check another task off your list, you’ll feel a sense of achievement. It’s much more encouraging to see your to-do list dwindle then try and tackle the project as one big undertaking. The easiest way to do this is to limit packing to one room at a time.

Reward Yourself

When procrastination seems to be making a daily appearance in your life, try incentivizing yourself to fuel your drive. Rather than focusing your mind on activities you can perform outside of packing, give yourself some kind of reward to look forward to each time you check an item off your list. Whether you treat yourself to some tasty chocolate or indulge in a little spa treatment, celebrating each completed task with a reward will give you the motivation you need to get the work done. Reserve the more significant rewards for large projects your complete while reserving smaller tasks for something like, seeing a new flick that was just released in theaters.

Choose the Right Place to Start

Part of the reason why packing and lack of motivation go together like peanut butter and jelly is that no one knows where to begin. To organize your packing process and ensure you formulate an efficient plan of attack, you need to start with the right room. If you start with the wrong rooms, you will wind up expending more time and energy than necessary.

Always start with the rooms that are the most difficult to tackle. If you save the harder rooms for last, it’ll be impossible to muster up any motivation. But, when you pack areas like your kitchen or basement storage area first, you’ll complete a bulk of the process up front and same the relatively easy work for last.

packing tips

Make a Checklist of Items

Taking an optimal approach to your packing project requires organization and efficiency. When you create and maintain a packing checklist, you’ll stay focused on what needs to get done and find yourself moving quicker through the process than you originally predicted. Just think: by completing your packing ahead of schedule, that means you get to minimize your stress, bask in more relaxation time, and concentrate on all the excitement around your move, rather than the pile of work you have.

Sound impossible? While it may seem like there’s no way to accomplish tasks ahead of schedule, all it takes is a strong, organized checklist to keep you on the right track. By mapping out a timeline, you won’t have to waste hours figuring out what to do next – you’ll simply follow your outline from day one until everything is packed and ready to go.

Get Rid of Pesky Distractions

Trying to maintain a high level of motivation when you’re consistently getting side-tracked or interrupted can be extremely discouraging. Each time you get distracted or have to stop packing to take care of another task will make it that much harder to start back up again. Whether it’s your dog barking, kids running around the house, or the constant beeping of your smartphone, make a concerted effort to eliminate distractions before you start focusing on packing for your move.

Send your children on a playdate, ask a friend to watch your furry four-legged friend, set your phone on mute, and be sure to minimize any unwanted interruptions that can prevent you from making progress with your packing. If you find yourself multitasking, you run the risk of consuming more energy and succumbing to exhaustion much faster than anticipated. And we all know, there’s no way to motivate yourself when you’re daydreaming about snuggling up in bed.

Stir Up Some Fun with the Help of Friends

No one said you had to pack alone. Why not enlist the help your friends and inject some fun into the process? After all, no one can deny how monotonous the task of packing can be – especially alone. So, when you feel that lack of motivation tugging in your mind, call up your friends and ask for some help to get a little pep back into your step. When you insert friends or even family into the equation, it can make the most tedious of tasks suddenly transform into a fun and memorable occasion.

Play some upbeat music, mix up a couple of cocktails or order a pizza, and make the packing process a more enjoyable project on your to-do list. Plus, if you are moving long distance, including your friends in the process will allow you to spend some extra, quality time with loved ones before relocating.

That overwhelming feeling you have about packing for your move doesn’t need to become an all-consuming part of your life. By taking a strategic approach to your packing and breaking it down into manageable tasks, you’ll find your motivation skyrocket – and the work will get done quicker than you could’ve ever imagined.