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Thursday, February 27, 2014

Are you a clutterer? Answer these questions to find out.

    
  


1. Do you have more possessions than you can comfortably handle?


2. Are you embarrassed to invite family, friends, health care providers, or maintenance workers into your home because it is not presentable?


3. Do you find it easier to drop something instead of putting it away, or to wedge it into an overcrowded drawer or closet rather than finding space for it?


4. Is your home, or any part of it, unusable for its intended purpose, with a bed you can't sleep in, a garage you can't park in, a kitchen you can't cook in, or a table you can't use for dining?


5. Is clutter causing problems at home, at work, or in your relationships?


6. Do you hesitate sharing about this problem because you feel embarrassment, guilt, or shame about it?


7. Do you have a weakness for discarded objects, bargain items, freebies, reading materials, or yard sales?


8. Do you use avoidance, distraction, or procrastination to escape dealing with your clutter?


9. Does your clutter create a risk of falling, fire, infestation, or eviction?


10. Do you avoid starting assignments, miss deadlines, or abandon projects because you can't find the paperwork or material you need?


11. Do you have difficulty making decisions about what to do with your possessions, daily living, or life in general?


12. Do you rent storage space to house possessions that you rarely use?


13. Do cleaning, organizing, follow through, upkeep, and maintenance all become daunting tasks, making the simplest of chores insurmountable?


14. Do you bring an item into your home without designating a place for it and releasing an equivalent one?


15. Do you believe that there is all the time in the world to clean your house, finish those projects, and read all those piles of old magazines or newspapers?


16. Are you easily sidetracked, moving from one project to another, without finishing any of them?


17. Are you constantly doing things for others while your own home is out of order?


18. Do you often replace possessions rather than find or clean those you already have?


19. Does perfectionism keep you from doing anything at all?


20. Does clutter cause you to have late charges added to your monthly financial obligations?


21. Do you feel a strong sense of emotional attachment towards your possessions, which makes it difficult to release them?


22. Do you consider all your possessions to be of equal worth, whether or not the objects have financial, functional or sentimental value?


23. Do you waste your valuable time and talents by constantly rescuing yourself from clutter?


24. Does clutter keep you from enjoying quality leisure time?


25. Is the clutter problem growing?


If you have answered yes to some of these questions, CLA is there for you. If you want help, you can find it in the Clutterers Anonymous fellowship. Source: CluttersAnonymous.net


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

A tale from the trenches

With my client's permission, I'm sharing her organizing story... 

Last week, as part of my training program client practicum, a team of new professional organizers and I worked with a client of mine to declutter and organize her home office. This was not the first time.

Sometimes, it takes repeated work to find what is truly going on with someone’s clutter and disorganization and for the client to be READY for change. As was the case with this client. After an in-depth discussion I discovered what was going on.  Whenever my client came across an item she didn’t know what to do with (mostly gifts people gave her that she felt guilty about not keeping) she moved it upstairs to her home office and placed it on the floor in front of her library shelves, saying to herself, “I’ll decide later.”  That behavior—postponing decisions and moving items she doesn’t know what to do with to a space designated for a different purpose—is what needed to change.  It’s not the decluttering. It’s not the organizing. It’s the BEHAVIOR. 

The client, my team, and I decluttered and organized the space in six hours.  But this time, we did a few things differently.

(1) We placed a decorative cylinder basket by her door (near her recycling) for her to place items she no longer wants, or never wanted. Once the basket is full she will take the items to her favorite donation center.  Why by the door? Because the items need to go out of her home, not to her office upstairs.  She was walking items upstairs to her office, only to discover she needed to walk them back down the stairs and out the door!

(2) We placed her yoga mat and exercise aids on the floor in front of her library shelves as a VISUAL REMINDER to take care of herself and not clutter the floor.

(3) I’m returning once a month for three consecutive months for ACCOUNTABILITY and to cement the new behaviors of making immediate decisions and releasing anything that is not beautiful or useful from her home.

Read her testimonial and see her pictures on my training business Facebook page (February 19 Practicum)—while you are there, feel free to “like” my page. 

A bit about me...

I love to organize anything! I love to read anything on the subject of organizing. I especially love helping others learn the joy and simplification organizing habits and behaviors can bring to their lives.

Click here to learn a bit about me and visit our websites http://www.solutionsforyou.com/ (organizing services), http://www.instituteprofessionalorganizers.com/ (training and education for professional organizers) and my book web site http://www.getrichorganizing.com.

Anne Blumer

Anne Blumer
Certified Professional Organizer, Certified GO System Trainer and Consultant, and Certified FreedomFiler Consultant

Client Before and After Pictures

Certified Professional Organizer

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