I’ve lived in the same apartment for almost 10 years. Part of that long tenure is definitely because the unit is great, the location is unbeatable, and I've loved all of my roommates. However, I've come to the conclusion that I've also stayed because I absolutely cannot stand the entire idea of packing.
As you may have noticed, I strive for efficiency in everything I do. I actually timed how long it takes an “el” train to go clockwise and counterclockwise around the Chicago Loop as to never waste a single minute commuting (it takes the brown line an additional 6 minutes to get to Merch Mart from LaSalle and VanBuren if you were wondering). So, the idea of packing all of my belongings into boxes is a terrifying proposition.
When I pack I have three goals:
- Pack like items together (e.g. books)
- Have a separate box for each location (e.g. 1 box for the cook books, 1 box for office books, 1 box for decorative books)
- Fill every box exactly to the top with no wasted space
Anyone who has ever moved is already rolling their eyes. Achieving one of these goals individually would be a feat in and of itself. Achieving all three in concert would be a modern miracle. I have unpacked entire boxes because one item wouldn't fit at the end. I end up sacrificing time efficiency for space efficiency for no net gain. It is a lose lose situation.
In the end, I again learn the hard truth that sometimes we need to prioritize our goals. 100% efficiency is often an unattainable goal and often flies in the face of overall strategy. As the Rolling Stones once said “You can’t always get what you want but if you try sometimes…You get what you need.” So, I have decided the most pressing concern is space. I only have a finite number of boxes, full boxes make a stronger stack, and fewer boxes equate to a lower cost from the moving company. I’ll figure out where I packed my toothbrush when I’m at the new house…