Wanderlust is defined as a strong desire to travel. Clearly, not everyone has it. Otherwise, there would be no settlers. A settler might be roughly defined as a person with a strong desire to stay put. The world needs both. And people are seldom as simple as being one or the other.
At times, travel is the furthest thing from our mind. It is a natural desire to want to move away from the home where we grew up, and establish ourselves as independent adults. But then, we want to settle down, establish roots, and start a family of our own. Wanderlust waxes and wanes at various times in our lives. It can be challenging to know when to settle and when to move, especially a long-distance move. Here are a few tips to help you decide if now is the right time:
When the Pros Outweigh the Cons
As with all things, there is a checklist of cost and benefits when it comes to moving. No matter how appealing the thought of moving might be to you, it is not always cost effective at the time. Here are some of the costs you have to consider:
- You are at a critical point in your job
- You have too much stuff to move cost effectively
- Your kids are just starting to make friends
- It’s not a seller’s market right now
It can cost thousands to move. And there is no guarantee that your stuff will make it to the new destination intact, or at all. When long distance moving, you need a name you can trust, and a price you can afford. Having a single point of contact for both packing and moving is also a plus.
If you have accumulated more than it makes sense to move, you might want to have a paring down period before making the move. Sell off a few things, or give things away. Take the time to go through everything, and keep nothing that isn’t important or truly meaningful to you. It really is less expensive to buy some things on the other side of the move, than to move them across country. Only make the move when the cost/benefit analysis makes sense.
When the Grass Really Is Greener
They say, the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. This is a reminder that even though it seems something is better just around the corner, it usually isn’t. Our field is just as fertile as our neighbor’s field. That is almost always true, except when it isn’t.
Once in a rare while, the grass really is greener. The neighborhoods are nicer. The schools are better. The air is cleaner. The local laws and mores are more to our liking. And the unhappiness we feel about where we currently live really would go away by moving some place else. If you are unhappy and unsafe, and you happen to live in one of the states listed here, the grass really may be greener some place else.
When You Just Have to See What’s Around the Next Corner
We started with wanderlust. And that seems to be a good place to end. At the end of the day, desire defeats rationality almost every time. We are not rational creatures; we are rationalizing creatures. We can rationalize any decision we make, no matter how bad it might actually be.
For some people, when it is time to go, it is just time to go. No better reason is required. Every year, over 14% of people migrate. More than 20% of those moves are over long distances. A certain percentage of the population have the wanderlust. You might be one of them. And it just might be your time for the itch. When you scratch it, just be sure to do so in a place better than where you leave, and at a time when the pros outweigh the cons.