Red Responds: Packing and Nervous

Sharon in Marietta writes:

For the past year I have been planning a relocation from the East
Coast to the West Coast – now that my children are grown. I have been a
widow for the past 13 years. I procrastinated, bumping my move from
March to April, then May, then June – and now it is July! I did finally
resign from my job, where I’ve worked over 30 years, and I plan to find
employment in my new city. Of course when I made my plans the economy
wasn’t as bad as it is now, and I was much more confident that I would
find work.
Now that I am actually packing my things and getting ready to leave, I am a nervous wreck.

It scares me to move to a strange city that is extremely different from where I’ve always lived (mostly it’s better, though – that is why I chose to go where I’m going). I do have several (mostly casual) friends in the new area. I’m afraid I will not find employment quickly enough (I will only have enough money to live approximately three months) or will be unable to find appropriate affordable housing.

Then I get angry with myself for being afraid, because I think I need something new, exciting and stimulating in my life – that is why I initially chose to take this risk and start a new life. Am I going through some middle-age crisis, or do you think I can make it? I’ve lived in the same city and state my entire life.

Dear Sharon,

You are taking a big risk during some hard times, but in the end it will work out. Things may not unfold quite like you plan, but that may be part of the point! This is a really big move, and a really big step. A little fear is a healthy thing, and may be just what you need to keep yourself from procrastinating into a bad situation when you arrive in your new hometown.

Even though you are moving across the country, there is a lot you can accomplish and align before you actually move. Check out apartments and rentals online that fit your budget, so that you can see what is available, and know what you are getting into. Your first place will not be your dream space, but this is definitely a time to play it safe rather than indulge. Besides, any place is only going to be temporary, as you eventually will be buying a home rather than continuing to rent.

As far as employment goes, finding a job isn’t going to be as challenging for you as finding the right job. It would be wise to start your job search now, even if it is only setting yourself up with a few headhunters or employment agencies. Initially, because your finances are going to be tight, you aren’t going to have the luxury of being picky. Unfortunately, because of the economy and corporate structure of our world, you will suffer from the “overqualified or underqualified” titles more than a couple of times throughout your search. I see you changing jobs a couple of times over the next couple of years, but each change will be a step up.

I really can’t say that you are going through a crisis, even though your plans have some risky and large holes that have yet to be filled. Whether or not it makes sense, you are doing what you need to do. Even though it is scary – and some will say reckless – you are following where your spirit leads. There will be challenges and triumphs, but you will end up standing on your own two feet, exactly where you wanted to be.

Best of luck to you!
Ext. 9226

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