As I pour my second cup of coffee I am torn between cursing the fact that I’ve lost a precious hour of much needed beauty sleep and shouting for joy because spring forward means warmer temperatures are on the way. I should have thought about this whole time change thing last night when we decided ONE more episode (Netflix is like that) because I’m dragging today. And with a mile long to-do list that isn’t a good thing. Who am I kidding – when don’t I have a mile long to-do list? Since we began our military life in 2008 I can’t recall when I didn’t have a list of tasks that is divided into levels of importance, I’m just grateful that this year my springtime list has nothing on it related to an impending PCS (Permanent Change of Station) move.
Many of my fellow military spouses aren’t that lucky though. Some are doing the PCS happy dance because they got their dream installation assignment, others are looking for their big girl panties as they try to figure out how to make the best of a crappy situation.
All I know is that when those orders come down, something inside clicks and instantly we are transformed into a spouse on a mission. A mission that often leaves us a frazzled, stressed out mess. But it doesn’t have to be that way – if you are prepared. Here are some strategies that can help you leave the stress behind no matter if you are happy dancing or not:
In Military life two things are certain. One that everything will change and two unless there are unique circumstances you will move approximately every 3 years. Don’t wait until the last minute. Knowing that the clock resets the minute your spouse arrives at a new installation will help you keep your expectations in check and help you plan your life.
Access Quality Resources:
One of the greatest things about the military community is that you aren’t alone. There are incredible organizations, websites and military facilities that have resources to help you deal with the chaos and change that comes with this lifestyle. One of the greatest resources I have found is the FREE PCS ToolKit that is put out by AHRN (Automated Housing Referral Network). And their 2016 version doesn’t disappoint. In it you will find detailed lists sorted in a timeline fashion that take the guess work out of – well EVERYTHING! Here is a sneak peek of some of the contents.
~ Checklists & worksheets
~ Reminders for things ranging from routine health care your family to tips for taking care of the family pet.
~ Insight on finances and home selection
~ Tips on dealing with travel, taxes, the post office, and SO much more!
Take A Deep Breath
You will get through this, and there will be days when everything goes wrong. But a deep breath and the knowledge that when all is said and done you will be sleeping in your bed calling a new place home in no time!
Whether you are new to military life, or you’ve been through enough moves that you cry when someone asks you for your address, one thing is for sure. PCSing is an adventure.
What are some tips that you’d like to share
with someone getting ready for a new adventure?
~This post was written on behalf of AHRN but you know me – all opinions are my own :)!
~Judy Davis, the Direction Diva is a motivational speaker, author and lifestyle blogger as well as a military life and teen suicide prevention expert. Co-founder of DASIUM, Judy’s books Right Side Up and Warning Signs: Is Your Teen at Risk are go to resources for families and her websites are filled with tips, inspiration and resources for those looking for direction. Connect with Judy at TheDirectionDiva.com