I do not know how it happens. Somehow between the time I moved in and now all of my things have multiplied. I did not notice how much more stuff I have since the last time I had to pack it all up in September.
As my roommate and I stared at all of our stuff last night wondering how we were ever going to fit it all in our cars or storage, I began to realize that this is a common problem. I know not everyone is moving out right now, but as college students across the country stare at all of their belongings in fear of packing them, I thought maybe we could all use a little advice so none of us end up like this:
Photo courtesy of Molly
Ways to pack with less stress:
1. Start by asking yourself if you still need the item. If you do not, you can donate or sell the item. (which means less to put into boxes and carry.)
2. Pack a section or a few things at a time. It's easy to get burned out when packing. If you know when you have to move out, you can plan ahead and just pack a section a day at a time. I find that when I do this my stuff is better organized, I am able to fit more into the limited space in my car as well as the boxes. I also remember where things are better a few months later when I'm moving in again.
3. Label boxes and items. I know it seems unnecessary at the time, but when you are loading up the car it's nice to know exactly what's in the box so it can be safely packed. It also makes unpacking a great deal easier.
Photo courtesy of Moving companies and movers
4. For college students, open your door and talk to people while you pack. One of the nice things about dorms is that everyone is going through the same things you are. I had a great time moving out with everyone on my floor last year, and it's a nice way to have one last time together before everyone leaves for the summer.
5. Plan ahead. No matter what else you do, if you keep when you need to be packed by in mind and you do not leave everything for last minute, you will be less stressed and your packing and unpacking will be much smoother.
Tips to decreasing waste when moving:
College campuses are especially notorious for creating enormous amounts of waste when students move out. Carpets, furniture, and other items are just tossed into dumpsters so they do not have to be moved.
If you are a college student, or anyone else, who just cannot take an item with them even though it's still in good condition, donate or sell it. Many places will pick up the item, or you can drop it off before you have packed your car.
For Santa Clara students, every dorm will have a location to drop off small and large items to donate, e-waste, used carpets, and things that actually need to go to the trash. The carpets, depending on what shape they are in, are recycled or reused. This diverts a great deal of unnecessary waste from landfills. For more information about where these services are located near your dorm, go here.
Before you move, (college students and everyone else) check out the services available to you to be sure that you can recycle and reuse as many things as possible.