Let’s be real, there are a lot of things about military life that can feel out of our control. Where we live, how often we move, the types of jobs or careers we can have, how often we get to visit with our families. It can be hard not to get run down by what we can’t control.
That part sucks sometimes. But the good news is, we DO have things we can control in this ever changing life. And shifting our focus to those aspects of our lives, can make military living feel a lot more manageable.
So let’s talk about some ways you can work to keep your sanity in your ever-changing military life:
This might feel like a bit much but keeping with the mentality of having to move all of your stuff in the near future, can help to encourage you not to hold on to items just for “maybe” or “could be” possibilities. So have a plan, declutter often, and don’t hold onto any items that you don’t/won’t use!
If this is new for you, start small. Create boxes labeled donate, trash, sell, and “other room” and sort items accordingly. Start with one room, and work your way around the house. Use sticky notes to mark larger items that you are considering getting rid of so that you can assess those at a later date.
Paperwork is a beast in general, throw in moving it every couple of years AND needing to hand-carry the most important docs-- it’s a lot. If you can stay on top of it throughout each year, you’ll save yourself a lot of suffering when it’s time for your next PCS.
Every month review receipts, documents, statements, etc and toss/shred any items that have been reconciled or updated.File away any documents you’re keeping for your own records such as receipts for large purchases or investment account statements.
Make digital copies of your most important documents, and keep them on an external hard drive. It’s always good to have a backup copy!
We’ve all had that situation where we move and the new house is nothing like the old house. Furniture doesn’t fit in the same space that we used it in last and it’s frustrating. But before you toss everything out and start over, try to get creative with how you can use furniture or storage to meet new needs.
You might find that the changing table dresser you used in your baby’s room, now fits perfectly in your office for storing office supplies and printing paper.
The most important tip of all-- be kind to yourself, always.
This life is hard enough, don’t be even harder on yourself. If the tips above don’t motivate you, consider doing them anyway. Do them because you deserve a better way of managing this military life. Do them because you deserve peace of mind and comfort in knowing you’re ready for a move even if it comes down at the last minute.