Note: More to Life with Faith and Lois is designed to be heard, not read. We hope you’ll listen to the audio, which includes emotion and emphasis that won’t be on this page. Our transcripts are generated with speech recognition software and may contain errors. 

Lois                        

Welcome to the podcast, More to Life with Faith and Lois.

Faith                   

I’m Faith

Lois                          

And I’m Lois.

Faith                      

Our podcast explores life’s many transitions that inspire and daunt us.

Lois                       

Good Morning Faith.

Faith

Good Morning Lois. How is it happening for you in this New Year?

Lois                         

My Gosh, here we go. Very excited. Very exciting. New Start to the new year. Welcome 2019. I can hardly believe that. Yes, yes. And life is so full of transitions and we are so excited to begin this New Year by exploring a variety of transitions and how they impact our lives. And, and the beauty of this is that every one of these transitions reveal to us that we are moving and alive. Faith, you wrote that recently and I just love that because that is what transitions do.

Faith                    

Yes. And if we weren’t moving we’d be dead. So revel in that! Movement means something is happening and that is such an exciting concept to step into 2019 with.

Lois                        

So welcome to episode 54, Transition: The Impact of Relocation. Faith, when you think of relocation, what comes up for you?

Faith                     

There’s so many different things that rise up in my mind, of course is the big move, like you’re moving from one home to another from one city to another. Even across the country or into another country. All of these are major things that we oftentimes face in our life and sometimes very often some people face them numerous times in life. So the big move is the first thing that pops into my mind, but there are other smaller moves that happen in the transition of where we might move from one office space into another office space. It’s a movement and so that transition of a new space, a new environment, new atmosphere, new surroundings, new people – all impact our lives

Lois                       

And some of us have moved a lot and I move a lot and you know, maybe we grew up in families where we moved a lot. So then when we got older and we started settling in, we kind of said –  wait a second. Shouldn’t I be moving every couple of years? And it almost becomes addictive that I don’t want to put too much here because there might be something better. So we’re going to explore relocation for all of us on all different levels, those of us who have moved a great deal and feel this impetus all the time. Every time we go someplace, oh, I could live here. Oh, I could live here by the way, I’m one of those people and I have been trying to root myself and it’s not easy. Just a heads up. So for those of you who are afraid of moving, there are some of us who are afraid of staying put. We always have some kind of fear. So there is a definition for relocation and you just talked about it. The action of moving to a new place and establishing one’s home or business and it really does change so much and it’s at the top of the list, Faith, for stressors that we will encounter.

Faith                     

So much. The impact of a move. So many times we just don’t consider how it will affect you emotionally, mentally, physically, and even spiritually. There is a depletion that happens even if it’s the best move ever and we’re really excited to do it. The stress that it takes to pack, to move, to transition, and then to establish a new environment, it really does take a toll on your life.

Lois                       

It really does. And today our focus is the impact of relocation. And we begin by acknowledging what stresses us out. We’re going to start sharing some of those things and then we look at what you can do about it so that you can manage the stress of relocation. And we’ve kind of divided this up into into four parts, so see if any of this fits for you and how it may encourage you or remind you of something you’ve forgotten to do. So get your list out. So the first thing when it comes to relocation is that moving is stressful because so much is unknown. That’s it. We’ve talked a lot about the unexpected and when you get ready to move, there are so many pieces that are unknown. No matter what you say.

Faith                   

We all want to know what is going to happen. We want to know what it’s going to look like. How long is it going to take? Is everybody going to be on time? Are the movers going to be there when they say they’re going to be there, so we get into these moments in this period of time where there’s a lot of anxiety, is everything going to work out so the unknown about how to make the move and then the unknown of going to a new place. Right? So we are just immersed in unknowns.

Lois                       

We have to find a new way to get to work. We have to find gas stations, a new place to shop. I mean there’s a lot of comfort in the familiarity of what we do everyday that we take for granted. We don’t even realize that affects us until we’re told, well, you’re going to be relocating, and so then all that stuff changes like your favorite restaurants or your place of worship. I mean, all of this is thrown up and it’s not it won’t come back down even more beautiful, but we don’t know.

Faith                    

Right? It’s the unknown factor and we like familiar. We are creatures who love to know and what to anticipate, what to expect so that we can move freely about it, but there is one new thing that we have that is more modern and current and our day in that is GPS, so it’s a huge help.

Lois                      

That’s a great point because that stress is taken away when you at least can get to work in a new location. The other piece of it, as you relocate those, you have to make new relationships. Yes, and that is a piece of the unknown that what if I don’t like anybody that lives around me or I don’t like anybody in my workplace ? Now, see, that’s not true. By the way, that’s an element that you’re probably not to happen, but it is a piece of unknown faith or it kind of rubs like, well, what if I don’t fit in?

Faith                   

We want to be accepted, known, valued, and walking into a new environment where there’s new faces, new personalities – that is very threatening and overwhelming and you can even be an extrovert and be very engaging and make friends easily. It is still overwhelming to step into a whole new wave of people that you’ve never met before.

Lois                      

So if we’re stating that moving is stressful because so much is unknown, what can we do about it? That’s what we’re going to look at right now. So what can we do about that? Well, what is unknown is going to become known.

Faith                   

Yes, in very short order. Our brains and our ability to adapt very, very quickly and the GPS, as I said before, is a huge help in just getting around and getting familiar and to take the time to just drive around, to walk around, to smell the smells, feel the field because our five senses are the very thing that ground us. What we see, what we smell, what we taste, what we feel, what we see, all of those things, and here those are the things that center us and bring us into a place where we can move more freely in our environment.

Lois                        

I love this idea though, that what’s unknown is going to become known as you mentioned in short order because it goes back to that whole thing we’ve talked about in past podcasts, which is we think what we’re facing is never going to change and it actually will and the unknown will resolve itself, just by virtue of your bed will show up someplace. Your sheets will be there that will be known to give you a little bit of comfort into the unknown.

Faith                    

Yes, and you have your family and you have those that you do know and you have your telephone. When you’re making connections to your friends that are behind on your family, it’s important to stay in those connections that are familiar to help you make the transition into what’s unfamiliar.

Lois                      

You know, I think one of the things that helped me moving the many times that I did because my parents were missionaries, was that they never appeared stressed at any of the relocations. Even when there was a war going on in Beirut and we had to leave because of the strife that was around us. We were never put in a position where we were frightened because my parents were frightened. They had such an air of this is what we’re doing and because of their confidence and how they moved through it, we just went, oh, I guess this is what we’re doing, and there also was no, there was no participation by the way that they didn’t come to us and say, would you like to mov, Lois, as one of six kids? They just planned it. This is what we were doing and I think in our age with our kids sometimes we put a lot out there and give a lot of responsibility to people who can’t necessarily make a dent in the new job we’re going to have. How do you say this? It doesn’t matter if I did or didn’t like it, it was going to happen. So how do you do that in a way that’s so positive that you go, oh, well this is just what’s happening. We’re going to say goodbye. You can always write letters and I never felt the stress of doing that and I think that’s a real gift that I got from my parents, so when I did relocations with my kids, it was more that way as well. Just kind of announcing it. Now it may have been traumatic and they may have had to deal with it, but they had to watch me or watch some other adult figure in their life. And I think that’s an important way to think about it because when you relocate now, you may be doing it with kids, with a spouse, with a partner, and how do you let that show around you so that it can be as peaceful as possible?

Faith                    

Well, someone needs to be in charge and your parents were in charge and you were in charge by the same, I’ve got this. I can do this and this is going to be good because and you’re going to come along and you will make new friends and it’s. It’s helping your spouse or your partner or your children to know. transition is not a negative. It’s hard. Yes, but it’s not necessarily a negative. We grow from it. We learned from it. We learn how to adapt to new situations, which is really important for children. My daughter, when she moved, one of the things she did was they did include them and they brought them out to where they were going to move and they made that trip first and they showed them the whole area. And they talked about the adventure and they talked about the zoo that was in that city and all the different things that they would be doing and the children got excited and then they went and had a really nice dinner and talked about it and they go, so what do you think? And they were excited because they saw the adventure. They also saw the heart, but they could see that was both and rather than either or.

Lois                      

So that’s a great way if you can, if you’re able to come out in advance and show those things around, that gives an enormous comfort as well because then what’s unknown becomes known. Yes. Even if you’re not in it. So that was our first point. Our second one is moving is stressful because it brings up so much emotion.

Faith                 

Whoa does it ever and all kinds of emotions. It just does.

Lois                       

I mean if you think it doesn’t and that you’ve got this all taken care of and you’ve got a teflon coating, there are things that you’re attached to that you don’t even realize and the symbolism of these things that are in your apartment or home or wherever you live, take on new meaning when you have to pack them up or get rid of them, depending on where you’re going.

Faith                

Exactly, and sometimes it’s even the things on the outside. If you’ve had a garden and you don’t want to lose that garden, but you have to say goodbye to it or there’s certain trees you’ve sat under that was in the nearby park. Those are things that have attachment. Have memories, have experiences of where you’ve read a book or you’ve had an encounter of an Aha moment. Those are all treasures and you take them with you, but you have to say goodbye to the literal space that they hold because new ones are going to open up to, you so it’s hard.

Lois                        

It is hard and these emotions are magnified if you are being forced to move kind of against what you would want. Say there’s been a divorce or there’s a death in the family and you need to go and make a big change in your life to take care of someone or another situation – when you are in a position of moving where this is not what your heart’s desire has been, then I think some of what you just described becomes even more powerful. And it brings us so much pain to be able to separate from it because we don’t want to and we feel like we shouldn’t have to and that language comes up a lot. It shouldn’t be this way and I think in our transition podcasts that we want to share with you is there are a lot of things that shouldn’t be or should be. They just are. They are. They just are.

Faith                  

And the emotional piece of it is something you cannot fully change immediately. You need to understand it first. So you may be in some sadness, grief, pain, literal pain, sometimes for some people, anger, frustration, an edginess and depression. Those are things that can definitely come along with this kind of a transition. You don’t want to stay there, but you do need to understand it. Why do I feel this way, or why am I angry and frustrated? And if you can get in touch with that, then you can move into the transition of what is happening in your life.

Lois                       

And in fact, you just jumped, started, you know, what is it that you can do about it? Well, that’s it. That’s the first step is acknowledge that these emotions are real. They’re absolutely real. They hurt. The beauty is we get to keep our memories. Yes, the emotion is hard, but we don’t have to leave that memory behind – whether it’s going out and taking a few more pictures of your garden so that you can take that with you and frame it up someplace or taking a piece of it, a seedling. You’ve mentioned the garden thing now, which actually has given me anxiety…

Faith                

I thought it would.

Lois                     

That is what I would do. I would actually take pods or something that I could then take to a new place and say, well, I have to restart and I can restart with this because the memories can go with you. And I think sometimes we forget that we think that we’re leaving something behind. We don’t have to. There are elements that we can’t take with us – that is absolutely true, but there are memories that we can carry with us which is really beautiful.

Faith                    

And that’s what we want to do with our life continues and our past goes with us.

Lois                       

I love it. Somebody told me once, you know, Lois, you’re not your dining table. I mean if for some reason, like in a divorce situation, you lose something that’s not me, so I can create something else that will bring as much joy and bring new memories if I choose to do that, that that’s how I can change up this dynamic of the emotions taking over because it’s true. I’m not my dining table, I am Lois, and what do I bring into this new place that we’re going to live that I can still serve people and enjoy a great meal – whatever it is that I’m not willing to let go of. So we are in episode 54 transition. The Impact of Relocation. Part of the stressor I think here is that we are stressed out by moving because we really fear change.

Faith                   

We do. Fear is such a deterrent sometimes and we don’t take that risk because we get the anxiety going and in that fear takes over and we have talked on this before in other podcasts about the power of fear and what we step into is we give too much energy and too much power to fear rather than understanding. Where is this fear coming from? What am I really afraid of? Rather than I’m just afraid and that’s to global and so we need to understand where is this coming from because it’s normal. Change. Whenever we make any kind of change in life, fear comes alongside them.

Lois                        

And sometimes it looks like panic because like, well, what if I. What if I never see these friends again? What if I never have contact with some of these relationships because I think the fear of change for me happens that if when I leave this situation, this will not be in place and I may not be able to recreate it and I fear losing those people. Neighbors that we’ve gotten to know and hang out with that and that piece is very hard. That is hard.

Faith                 

That’s a big piece of losing so we don’t want to lose anything and we have yet to see what we’re going to gain because we’re not there yet and so the focus is on what we’re losing rather than on what is evolving and what is yet to come. And that’s normal. I mean that’s totally normal. There is a season, a period of time where we do need to feel that emotion of grief, which we just talked about. We need to feel sad. We need to say our goodbyes, have the tears and say goodbye to the house you’ve lived in for awhile and then to make that transition. But to know that you have everything within you to make the change. You can make this transition because you’re ready, you have it. It’s just stepping into that unknown, which we touched on, and that it’s all gonna play out well.

Lois                       

Because we take ourselves with us. Yes. And we stay constant, right? Even in the midst of the change. That’s part of the memory thing too. You know, so. So what can we do about it when we fear this change? Well, one of the things that Faith you’re so good about reminding us is that nothing ever stays the same. We think it will, but it really doesn’t stay the same. And if we can think that, but in the middle of our fear, it’s hard to say nothing stays the same because we don’t want to lose that neighbor or the familiar route to work and all those kinds of things. So understanding that we will begin to accept the change. We just don’t know it yet because we’re not in that changed place.

Faith                 

And the change is an adventure. We didn’t begin to look at the fact that when there is this transition, you are on a new journey and a new journey means new experiences, new encounters, a new adventure, a new unfolding. We can get fixated on the negative of everything we’re losing and again, it’s the both and and it’s never going to stay this way. The transition means something is happening, something is moving and you’re a part of it.

Lois                       

And you know, as you mentioned before, with GPS, you can find your way around a new territory. Well, for most of us, unless we’re moving from here to, I don’t know, Australia, which is really far away and you could be, there is the likelihood that you can go back, right? Not for long periods of time necessarily, but to be able to go visit, to be able to keep a relationship in play. You know, we are from the San Francisco Bay area and we make it a point to go back a number of times a year and every time I land there’s something that happens, you know, to my heart. I am opened in a new way just because that was so familiar for me for so long and I revel in it and I love it. And when I come back, this is home and this is where I’m supposed to be, but it recharges a bit and it reminds me that those people with whom I had relationships, I haven’t lost them. The ones that we stay connected with, you get to stay connected with. So do remember that in this day and age you are not leaving somebody for good, right? Unless you choose to and you may need to. That may be something entirely different. So if you’re dealing with stress because you fear change, understand that as it changes, you can still go back to it. You can dip your toe back into that and keep those relationships alive. Finally moving is stressful because we keep looking for the right place. And what does that mean? Well, it’s for people like myself and others who have just moved so many times that we kind of go, well, this is good, but there’s probably something better. So what if I just kept going? We get this little rolling thing going that we don’t ever want to be satisfied and so we’re stressed out because we haven’t found the exact right place and this is more common than you think when you meet a lot of young people who have been part of families that have moved a great deal. They just think it’s the norm. Well, why would I ever sat down route someplace because there’s gotta be something better. There’s got to be something cheaper or I can get a better. I don’t know, whatever. You pick – a better school so you keep thinking of the next best place instead of putting roots down. And that can cause a lot of stress for you when you’re thinking about relocation, if all you’re ever looking at is the external situation to fix the internal problem.

Faith                 

Exactly. And that’s oftentimes what happens is that there’s something that is unsettled within that you have to take the time to find out what that is. So if you find yourself just constantly moving and it doesn’t, maybe it’s not even a literal move, it’s a constant changing up. You always have to remodel, redecorate, move things around all the time. I would really encourage it that is happening, that you take some time to say, wow, what am I trying to reestablish inside that is not settled within me because that’s usually what’s going on. And we try to make the external fit when the internal isn’t fitting.

Lois                       

Boy that resonates for many of us I know for sure. And so in addition to doing that, what do we do when we are in this situation? Is there a way you can get to the place where you say, I am right where I’m supposed to be?

Faith                   

Yes, I think it’s where you can find the thing that speaks to your soul. And oftentimes if you’re in a place in a location that doesn’t resonate well, you are going to feel restless. A good example is what resonates with me is the mountains, and ever since I moved to Colorado back in the seventies, I’ve been at home. And before then when I lived in the Midwest, I never felt like I was home. And so there’s something that resonates within you that goes, oh, this fits for me, and that would be the first thing. I would encourage people to look at it. Does it fit? Are you in a place that fits for you? And I’ve had other friends, it’s the ocean and soon as they get to the ocean they’re going, okay, now I feel like I’m home. And so sometimes it’s that event that is going on that we need to really kind of sit back and take inventory and go, am I where I fit well? And it resonates about life to me, rather than I’m stuck. And so that’s one piece of it. But the other piece to recognize the fact that we are settled and we know who we are inside of ourselves. If we don’t know who we are, going back to identity, we are always going to be restless and restlessness comes out of not knowing, but looking for who we are in the external rather than in the internal.

Lois                      

So when we carry ourselves into these new places, even if we’re always looking for the right place or we’ve been relocated because of a divorce or trauma or we’ve been relocated because we have a fabulous new job and we need to have a new place. We carry ourselves to that new place and, how do we find ways to fit in? How do we find ways to remind ourselves of who we are and why we’re connected? I think those are so important as we say, okay, this is where I am. It may not be forever. It may be for a very long time, but this is where I am and I’m going to sit here and just take it in and see if I fit.

Faith                  

Yes, acceptance, accepting the change and grieving the loss of what has transpired, but then moving into the acceptance of I’m on a new journey in my life.

Lois                      

So this has been our 54th episode. We are so excited to launch transitions with you throughout the entire year. The impact of relocation and it’s been kind of cool to discover that we can find peace wherever we end up.

Faith                  

Thank you for listening today. Transitions bring us face to face with ourselves and it’s one of the ways we know that we are moving and that we’re alive.

Lois                      

Please subscribe to our podcast wherever you’re listening to us right now, and if you’d like to stay up to date with all of our transitions, you can check out our website and join us next week for Transition: The Impact of Living with Someone.

Faith                  

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Lois                       

More to Life with Faith and Lois is a podcast to support, encourage and uplift you.

Faith                  

As you transition through all sorts of change, we want you to know there is more to life.

Lois                       

We’ll be back next week.