Making a Plan Works Every Time

I knew when I retired last year (just about one year ago) that we would be moving within another 12 months and with that came not only excitement and anticipation, but also deep concern about my ability to handle all that would accompany retirement, purging and packing and selling our current home and then moving and unpacking in our new one.  I had many sleepless nights of worry over this.

Learning to plan ahead with rheumatoid arthritis

I am happy to report that it was far less overwhelming than I thought and, in fact, I found it liberating. I wish I knew then what I know now as it would have made a huge difference. One key factor was the amount of planning I did. 

I just needed to get started to make it all happen

Despite the fact I had belongings of 31 years to go through in a house of 3500+ square feet (every inch of which was used), once I got started, it went very smoothly. It is all about planning. I spent weeks arranging for all the service people to come from haulers to movers, to house cleaners and repair folks to a truck that comes to your house and shreds documents. Had I not done that, I believe the entire process would have been miserable at best, and likely flare inducing.

Did adequate planning help minimize the chance of an RA flare?

Throughout, I often puzzled over why I did not flare, even when doing some rather intense physical work. I think the answer lies in the planning and the ability to take breaks, sometimes a day or two, to refresh, rest and renew, before moving forward. I had the luxury of 6 months to do this, which often people do not. If a job or other life circumstance, demands you re-locate, you often have very little time to get it all together. That said, the planning becomes even more crucial.

How to plan a move with rheumatoid arthritis

Make planning a priorityFrom the moment you know you are moving, start the process. I cannot emphasize this enough. Make it a priority! Because if you do, you can get through it despite RA. Even with a short turn-around time, with proper planning and a positive attitude you can do it successfully and with joy! I kept my mind on all the wonderful new experiences in store for us and approached it like a wonderful adventure. I firmly believe that attitude can be a huge factor.Try to limit and counter stressStudies show that moving is one of the biggest stress inducers, right up there with starting or losing a job, retirement, etc.  That means we need to counter that stress and use the tried and true strategies that limit stress. For me that means, trying my best to continue to meditate, get massages, swim and do my Tai Chi. Also, as much as possible, stick to my routine as that helps to keep my RA in check. Develop stress-relieving techniques ahead of timeIf you do not already have a list of stress reducers that work for you, develop one now. Do not wait until you are deep into a stressful state as that will make if much more challenging to dig your way out.  While life is calm experiment with some stress busters that appeal to you.  I never thought meditation was for me until about 8 years ago, when I started on a whim and have never looked back!Now that I am happily and completely settled into my new home, I can reflect on why it all went so well and the overriding thought that comes to mind is planning. Having a complete, achievable and well-thought out plan for whatever life event you have coming up will allow you to move through it with success and joy!Nan

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