3 Reasons Why Hiring an Organizer is Ineffective

In most cases, hiring an organizer can be life changing. However, there are some common misconceptions about what an organizer can and can't accomplish that I wanted to address to help some people save time and money.

  1. An Organizer Can Do It All For You So I Don't Even Need to Be Home!

Nope. At least not with this organizer. Why? Because this is YOUR stuff! Over the years you've chosen to bring all that stuff into your home and you've chosen to keep that stuff there for all this time so this is about YOU. It's also about why you've chosen to keep stuff in your life that you don't like, want or need. There is clearly an underlying issue going on. I'm not saying there's something wrong with you or that you're bad or messy or screwed up (you're not!), but I am saying it's about time you open up to taking a look at what and why you have stuff and being open to letting go of what no longer serves you. This is like going to a nutritionist for a cleansing. If you spend the whole time eating McDonald's, you won't lose the weight or feel better and it's not like the nutritionist can do the cleanse for you. Change comes from within and shows up on the outside, whether it's about losing weight or losing clutter.

Organizing is about YOU taking the time to take stock and become aware of what you are keeping in your home and why. You need to make that choice so that you claim responsibility for what you keep in your home. I want this experience for you because it can be life changing. Suddenly, if you make decisions in your life based on what YOU truly want, love and need, life becomes much better and easier for you. When you start with the items in your home, you have a tangible way to learn an amazingly beneficial life skill that will literally make life better for you. If, however, you choose to hire someone to do it all for you then you run the risk of having important items thrown out or donated, not being able to find anything because you don't know where they put it or, because you haven't addressed what caused the clutter in the first place, you'll wind up with the exact same amount of clutter (or worse!) in a short amount of time with you scratching your head wondering why it didn't work. If you're really serious about getting organized and STAYING organized, this has to be about you and you need to be ready to take a look at your stuff and make the decisions. An organizer should be hired to be your guide and your coach – not your Mommy.


Does coming home and seeing this every night make you feel relaxed? Is clutter in your castle bringing you down?

Does coming home and seeing this every night make you feel relaxed? Is clutter in your castle bringing you down?

 2. It's just Clutter...what's the Big Deal?

It's never just clutter. This is about you not making decisions that directly affect your life and the effects it's now having on you. Time lost, money lost, confusion, exhaustion, frustration and overwhelm. Do you enjoy those feelings? Or could taking a few hours to start to just take stock in what you own and making the simple decisions of: “do I like this, need this or use this” change your life for the positive? That exhausted feeling you have when you think of starting to get organized? That's a direct response to what you have sitting around in your home. Your stuff is literally exhausting you so wouldn't spending a few hours to purge that exhaustion from your home be worth it to you?


3. I Can't Deal With Your Stuff So I'm Hiring Someone to Deal with It Instead:

Sorry couples! Many of you have spoken to me about how you'd love to hire me and make your partner completely change how they live while you either hide out somewhere or do the work for them but that's not how it works (at least not with any degree of success). In my experience, your spouse or partner will feel like you've hired someone to gang up on them and they will feel judged. They are also being forced to confront their “stuff” both literally and figuratively without being given room to accept the possibility of change. Imagine if you took them to a therapist without consulting them first. How would they feel when they found out? Probably like a dog does when you take them to the vet- they just want to get the heck out of there ASAP. They are also going to feel embarrassed and angry and will push back, run away or some really interesting passive/aggressive behavior will show up. They most likely will become unwilling and unable to get the help they may need because of the judgmental or pushy way the change been thrust upon them. If you're looking for help to create positive change in your partner, try to introduce the idea of hiring an organizer to them in a calm, loving manner and allowing them time to make their own decisions. It's like if your partner had a drug problem and you put them into rehab without their consent. Would you really surprised when they relapsed?

Just like you living with them every day hasn't helped them conquer their issues, my consulting with them or going into their home or office to work with them won't help make much changes either....unless they themselves are open to working with me. Their being "willing" doesn't mean you've badgered them into booking a session with me because you feel you know what's best or because you're tired of looking at (and living with) their mess, this means they themselves are willing to show up and work with me. I can't promise miracles, especially if I meet with resistance but the more willingly they show up, the more able I am to effect change into their (and your) lives. I also will flatly turn down working with any unwilling client so trying to slide one past me doesn't work. Try hiring someone else but as I've seen unwilling clients literally walk away from me and out of their own offices, don't be surprised if it doesn't work.

Organizing can be fun and life changing but as with everything, it's about being willing to make some changes in your life. If you're not ready for change, that's okay. If you are willing to create some changes, start by just allowing yourself to imagine a home where you can find everything easily and there's no clutter. Allowing just that space into your life can be an important first step.


Good Enough Organization & Cleaning Tips

Everyone thinks getting organized means living some austere or perfec life where you put everything away instantly and everything is always sparkling clean. I don't know about you, but I sure don't live that way nor would I want to. Kudos to those who do, but this blog isn't about the neatniks and perfectionists. This blog is for people living busy lives who just want to make things a little easier for themselves. This blog is also for people who are struggling with health issues and a lack of energy...I battled a serious illness last year and had to really change some of the ways I could get and stay organized and clean and I want to share those tips with you, whether you're healthy but don't love cleaning or are struggling to feel like you can still live like a human. So here are some simple, quick tips for those who want their space to at least be "good enough". 

1. Tackle High Traffic Areas:  Hall entryway, living room, kitchen, bathroom. These are places we all frequent and where guests tend to show up so at least do the bare minimum (like vacuuming) to keep it looking nice. Most of the time just keeping these areas vacuumed or swept and free of clutter will do it. If you can only vacuum or sweep one room at a time because you're too tired or you don't have enough time, that's fine. Do one room per day and you'll still keep it clean enough!

2. Laundry vs. Clothing...: You know what I mean. Most of us have 1 laundry basket where we put all our clothes in but sometimes that gets overcrowded. It also means sometimes we put something in our laundry that isn't necessarily all that dirty or we just don't feel like having to fold it or hang it and put it away right then. So invest in another laundry basket to keep either overflow or those clothes that may still have one more wear in them yet- this way they are away from the dirty laundry like your underwear so they're still wearable but they aren't sitting on your chair in a big ball of clutter for all to see. 

3. Shoes and Keys - Designate a Spot!: Everyone coming through your door will have shoes and keys with them. You'll also probably want them to take off their shoes immediately (unless you like cleaning up extra dirt, grime and germs) but if there's not a designated area for these items it means clutter, chaos and time wasted. Use a small bowl or a hook for the keys and make it a habit to drop them there immediately upon walking in the door. If you or your spouse have loose change, have a bowl to collect anything from your pockets. Have a spot where you can take off your shoes near your entryway to cut down on tracking dirt in - cubby's, shoe racks, and hanging shoe racks are some great ideas for containing shoe clutter.

4. Make Your Bed!: Your bed is the biggest thing in your bedroom. Your bedroom is the place where you go to rejuvenate and rest so even if it's just pulling up the covers,an  attempt to make your bed will help transform your bedroom into a calmer, less cluttered area. It's a good habit to get into and will only take you 20 seconds or less... unless you have a million throw pillows, in which case, I ask why you would do that to yourself? That's just more work for you now isn't it?

5. Wipe Down Sinks After Each Use: I don't know why, but my sink looks dirty 2 seconds after I've used it. I don't enjoy cleaning so I do a major job once a week to clean my bathroom but the rest of the time I just quickly run a cloth over the area to keep it looking clean. It takes 5 seconds and keeps the sink and bathroom looking so much cleaner. This works great for your kitchen as well.

6. You Don't Have to Choose All or Nothing: Do some cleaning and clear clutter in 5 minute spurts if that's all you have. Just decide (by yourself or with your family as a whole) to tackle one area for even 5 minutes. You'll see a big difference and you'll feel better. Last year I was bedridden and often did not have the energy to do much of anything so I had to choose this as my only option. As a result, I was able to keep my space looking decent and clean enough until I had enough energy to tackle larger projects. So trust me, a little can go a long way...not just in cleanliness but just in making you feel like you live in a nice space and are worth the effort...because you are worth the effort.