Spring Cleaning before Spring Arrives 

The Unexpected Move

Friday, January 1, 2016

As the New Year begins, thoughts of getting organized come into mind. Some of us have already written down resolutions setting the foundation for the New Year. Our ultimate goal is to have better control of the stuff in our environment.

The idea of getting organized motivates us to go on a shopping spree buying all types of storage containers.  At the beginning, our intentions are always good but as we start the process, we either become frustrated and overwhelmed with the task at hand. We quickly forget that the clutter did not occur overnight and the process of organizing it will take time. However, success will come with patience and the time that you’re willing to put into the process.

Here’s my 9-Steps to Organizing to assist you in achieving your organizing goals in 2016:

  1. Set realistic goals that you will be able to accomplish. If you trying to organize a closet, ask yourself what is the closet going to be used for. Tip: Make sure to take before and after pictures so you can see your progress.

  2. Start with smaller projects first. You can start decluttering and organizing a dresser one drawer at a time. Tip: Group all like-items together, and then eliminate what you don’t need.

  3. Always pace yourself by setting a reasonable amount time while working on the project. Use a timer if needed.

  4. Take breaks to eat and stay hydrated to avoid becoming mentally and physically tired.

  5. Ask a friend or hire a professional organizer to assist you.Tip: Holding yourself accountable to your goal is important; let go of the excess.

  6. Find local organizations that you can donate all your excess items. (Check out my Resources page online for places where you can donate: www.declutternowandforever.com/resources.html).

  7. Remember that Rome was not built in a day, so don’t become frustrated if you don’t see immediate results.

  8. After completing the project, review what you have done to determine the types of storage containers that need to be purchased.

  9. Evaluate the changes in your new found space. Ask yourself, “Is it working for me?” and make adjustments as needed.

“Remember that when you are able to clear the clutter, it frees up your mind for creativity”

– Patricia Campbell

Monday, April 18, 2016

Most of the time moving to a new home is usually planned.  The reasons for moving could be the need for more

space for a growing family, or downsizing because kids have moved out to start their own lives.  But also, moving

can come unexpectedly due to employment relocation, family circumstances and even for health reasons. 

This was the case with a recent client. She contacted me because she had to relocate to another state due to an

employment change.  This came out of nowhere. First, she had to deal emotionally with the fact that she was leaving friends and familiar surroundings behind before even thinking about the whole process of moving. It was truly an emotional rollercoaster for her. 

During the initial consultation, I asked my client to give me as much detail as possible including her goals for completing this relocation to another state.  After hearing all of the details, she told me that this move had to be completed in 5 weeks. She was already overwhelmed with such a short timeframe knowing that so many things had to be done. Her major concerns were the psychological process of letting go of stuff, being overwhelmed by the process of packing and moving, staying focused during the process and meeting the 5-week deadline.  I reassured my client that with my assistance we would be able to meet this tight deadline and proceeded to do a walkthrough of her apartment to make a moving assessment. 

Using my assessment, I developed a course of action for this move, which I presented to my client. She agreed to the plan and we set a date to start the process. First, I provided her information of movers for Florida and helped her to acquire boxes for packing. After getting an estimate for 50 boxes from Bekins Van Lines, we began going through the clothes in her closets and leaving only the clothing to be packed. Since she was relocating to a slightly warmer climate, she would not need to keep as much winter clothing. Then we did her books, papers, and the second bedroom on another day.  After packing the items to be moved, I was able to take all of her donated items with me at the end of each session.  I kept in constant contact with her to make sure that she stayed focused especially when things became very emotional. 

It seemed as though time was flying by as the deadline was quickly approaching.  I made sure to give her reminders of things to be done such as utility cut off dates and even getting her income taxes done before leaving. My client asked me to come over when her truck was being picked up by the auto shipper on a Friday night. The movers came the next day to pick up all of her stuff.  On her last day in the apartment, I went over to make sure that she was ready for her departure flight. One of her dear friends came by to assist with last minute packing. Since she had to shipped her vacuum cleaner, I brought my vacuum cleaner over for her to use before her landlord’s final inspection.  

In the end, with my assistance my client was able to move within her 5-week deadline. Her relocation move was a success!  

Ask yourself this question, would you be able handle moving in such as a short period of time?  If your answer is NO, maybe it’s time for you to really take a closer look at the items in your space.

9 Steps to Organizing for the New Year

DeClutter Now & Forever

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Everybody is looking forward to the warm weather, which is only a couple of months away. People are making plans for upcoming outdoor events and much desired vacations. While the warmer weather tends to draw people to outdoor activities, most indoor projects tend to come to a complete halt.  There goes the plan to clean out the closets and places such as the kitchen pantry, playroom, junk room, basement or the attic.  Wouldn’t it be nice to work on these projects before the weather gets warmer? 

When we think of Spring cleaning, it brings memories of opening windows to air out the winter blahs and blooming flowers and trees. Spring cleaning can be a great way to remove the weight of excess clutter from your home and create new spaces that bring new energy.  I think of it as deep cleaning the home.  Imagine standing in your home and being able to see the four corners of any room without the excess stuff. What a great feeling! 

It would a great idea to make a plan with a goal in mind for each Spring cleaning project. I would suggest that you take pictures - before and after - of each project, which will be an inspiration to you later when the project is completed.

You can start with a bedroom closet by removing excess winter clothes that have not been worn in some time. This is very helpful when you have to transition your closet from winter to summer. Excess items could be donated to charity. Another project could be going through storage closets in the basement to remove extra toys, suitcases, unused small appliances, and expired cleaning products. With the exception of the expired cleaning products, most of these items could be donated or sold in a garage sale. Sometimes the removal and rearrangement of furniture can also create an entirely new space in a home.

To conclude, if you start your Spring cleaning now, you’ll be ahead of the game and have more quality time for things that really matter in life such as your family and friends. Besides, who wants to be decluttering in the heat of the summer?!