Did you ever see Fight Club? Perhaps read the book? (The first rule is…) OK, I promise: no spoilers. But while there are plenty of memorable lines and certainly plenty of memorable visuals from that movie, I distinctly remember Tyler asking, “how much can you know about yourself if you’ve never been in a fight?” Now, let me be clear: I am NOT advocating starting a fight club. However, I do think that getting outside of one’s comfort zone and moving out of state is a healthy exercise. In full disclosure, I’ve never been in a fight, so maybe Tyler Durden has it right, and I never needed to exit my native state. But I chose a different path.
Moving is a uniquely personal experience. Instead of getting quotes over the phone, look for a company that will send out a moving consultant to your home to assess your move and give you an accurate estimate, free of charge. If a reputable company is hired, you will get the best packing, moving and storage options to fit your needs and your budget, plus they usually provide a detailed checklist to keep you on track for the big day.
Look for moving services such as:
• Full-service packing
• Do-it-yourself packing and supplies
• Labeling, inventory, and loading
• Transportation services
• Crating and containers
• Storage-in-transit/long-term storage
Is it a good idea to move out of state?
There is probably no way to write this without disclosing that my native state is California, and that I currently live in Michigan. And trust me, all the jokes and questions that are surfacing in your mind about “why???” have already been asked and an answer has been attempted. I stand by the statement that it was the best thing I’ve ever done. Now, it wasn’t easy, and there were most certainly some tears shed along the way. But I maintain that it is the best decision I have ever made. Why? Because of the growth I have been able to achieve. And that transcends the territorial borders of both California and Michigan.
Pros and cons of moving out of state
Not that I advocate asking the Internet for reasons to uproot your entire life and dwelling (along with anyone or any pets who cohabitate with you), but a quick search on the Internet will give you some benefits, disadvantages, and things to consider when entertaining the idea of leaving your current state:
- Personal growth
- Potential to make new friends
- New food to try
- Potential new/different job opportunities
- A fresh start
- Distance from friends and family
- Cost of living
- Political environment
Notice that list doesn’t necessarily attribute characteristics of “pro, con or things to consider.” I’ll let you be the judge on those. But to expound on some of these from my own lens:
A fresh start
Some searches point out that you get to be the exotic person for a little while when you land wherever you’re going; and not just from “out of town” but from a different state. This is exciting. People usually want to show you around, share their favorite restaurants, and tell you all the secrets they’ve discovered. There is an excitement that comes with being the new kid in town and leaving behind whatever worries or baggage you might have had in the last place.
Distance from friends and family
This is a bit of a sliding scale, I have found. If you are considering relocating to a neighboring state that is a tolerable trip in a car or by some other manageable means of transportation, then maybe the distance isn’t so bad. It also depends on how close you are with said friends and family. Maybe you should revisit that “fresh start” section? But if you find that you need a little crowbar separation because your family just shows up regularly unannounced, and you dislike that, then maybe the distance is a good thing. If, however, you would be too melancholy to be happy with that distance and separation from your trusted circle and virtual presence over phone or Zoom isn’t enough, then perhaps you should stay put. It’s a personal choice. I have always lived away from most of my family, and have thrived in the distance. It also makes the time we spend in each other’s physical space (usually around the holidays) that much more special, and we seem to appreciate it more.
All right. This one is tough. For most Michiganders, I find the decision to be rather swift, much like mine to leave California. It’s the eternal quandary of girls with curly hair always wanting straight hair; or “the grass is always greener on the other side.” Right? People who grew up shoveling snow (and walking uphill both ways to get to school) are eager to leave it all behind. But it ain’t all unicorns and butterflies “everywhere but here.” Seriously. Consider the weather. Are you someone who is perpetually cold? Then your destination state is probably somewhere Southern. Are you OK with the earth moving from time to time? No? Then California probably isn’t the state for you. How about tornados? I’d click my ruby red heels before I even saw a tornado. It’s a serious consideration. Think about it.
All of those things are real things to think about. But the greatest argument I can lay at your feet is the potential personal growth. I come back to the idea of Tyler Durden and getting into a fight. Moving two thousand miles away from everyone and everything I knew was hard. And a little bit sad. But I regret nothing. It gave me space to be alone, to be lonely, to figure out who I am, who I want to be, to miss my friends and family enough to truly appreciate the times we spend together, to make new friends and explore new foods and locations, to engage with people who grew up differently than I did, to experience different cultures from my own, to teach people about my background and culture. And I don’t think I would have done any of that if I stayed in my comfortable [overpriced] apartment in Hollywood. It was because of the discomfort that I pushed myself to grow – personally and professionally. It’s been an exciting, entertaining, engaging, humbling experience so far. And the worst-case scenario? I can always move back.
What are good reasons to relocate?
- Need more space
- New job
- Empty nest
- Visit family more often
- School districts
- Change of scenery/lifestyle
- Cost of running a house
- Changes in the surrounding area