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Your moving date is coming up fast and you’re stressed about everything you have to do. With these top 5 packing tips, you can remain calm and productive as you work through your checklist.

First, you have to decide whether you’re packing yourself or hiring a professional packing service. If you have small children, can’t take time off for the move, or have a lot of stuff; hiring a company to do the packing and the heavy lifting can take a lot of the burden off your shoulders. It can also help you avoid injuries and damage to your items.

Second, start packing early. Ideally, you’ll start packing as soon as you find out you have to move. Experts recommend starting six months before the move date. However, many people don’t get that much notice.

Third, create a checklist of all items you have to move and check them off when you have packed them. This inventory can help you save your sanity during the chaotic last days before your move.

Fourth, pack in the correct order. You can start cleaning out storage areas, garage, attic and closets without disrupting your daily life. Remember to dispose of any items you no longer need or want. Then, tackle the kitchen and living room and switch to paper cups and plates in the last two weeks leading up to your move date. Pack your clothes and toiletries last since you’ll be using these items up until the last minute.

Fifth, label your boxes. Consider color-coding them by room.

If you find yourself behind or overwhelmed with packing, GreenLight Movers offers packing services for your convenience.