1 - Maximum Time to Process
Children are more prone to anxiety if they feel something is happening outside of their control.
They also take longer than adults to adapt to changes and new routines.
Telling your child about the move as early as possible is key to mitigating this and will give them time to process the changes happening around them.
2 - Weigh up the Positives
One way to get your children more excited about the move is to highlight the positive changes of the new home or area and how this will improve their lifestyle.
They may naturally assume that moving means leaving behind their favourite things like toys and pets, so take time to reassure them that they will all be moving together.
3 - Stability & Consistency
Children feel more secure when they have stability and consistency in their lives. It's important to therefore highlight elements of their life that won't change. This includes things like play schedules, bedtime routines, or the fact that they still have a supportive and loving family that isn't going anywhere.
4 - Allow Them to Say Goodbye
Let the children say goodbye. Not just with their friends and neighbours but also their favourite places such as parks, schools, or anything else they'd like to. It's also worth mentioning to them that saying goodbye doesn't mean goodbye forever and that they can always come back to visit in the future.
5 - Keep Them Away on Moving Day
Some children will find seeing their toys packed into the back of a lorry upsetting. For this reason, it may be worth having them stay with a friend or relative on the day of the move.
6 - Children's Bedroom First
When the moving lorry does arrive at your new home, it's always worth setting up the children's bedrooms first. This way, they have a safe and familiar space to retreat to when things get chaotic elsewhere in the new property.
7 - Explore Together
Naturally, everyone will need time to adjust to the new location. But why not make it an adventure by taking your children out to explore the area? This also allows you to find nearby parks and playgrounds that will no doubt become useful later on.
8 - Meet the Community
When moving to a new area, getting involved in your local community is a great way to make friends and feel at home faster. This will also give you an opportunity to scout out potential playmates for your kids.
9 - Be Receptive and Attentive
No matter how your child responds to the move, you must be receptive to their emotions and needs. Even if it's just to remind them that their emotions are always valid - there's no wrong way to feel. While moving house can be especially tough on younger children, both parents will also need to support and help each other through the moving process. Only with this strong mutual support can you really give your children the time and attention that they will need before, during, and after moving into your new home.
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