You CAN be organized and clutter free. Yes, you!

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Imagine this:

  • Your to do list works for you, not against you
  • Everything in your closet is clean, ready to wear and appealing
  • You open a drawer and immediately find what you were looking for
  • Your home office inspires and energizes you to do your best work
  • Horizontal surfaces are clear and inviting

You can have this. Truly.

I can help you break through the mass of overwhelmingness.

I’ll guide you patiently and compassionately to get the peaceful, functional spaces you crave.

I’ll create systems specially for you to make it easy to keep your life clutter free and organized.

Does that sound appealing? Great!

Get started by getting my Organizing Made Easy kit. It includes:

  • Answers to common questions about getting organized.
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  • A special report, “30 Minutes to Less Clutter on Your Desk.”
  • A free 20 minute phone consultation with me.

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Podcast 075: Do it your way

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This is Podcast 75: do it your way. Back in podcast 17 I talked about how you can make your office less boring and conventional by outfitting it with patterned file folders and a tape dispenser shaped like an animal. Today I’ll talk about making your processes and systems less boring.

By that, I don’t mean that they’ll necessarily be fun, although that’s always a good side benefit. What it mean is that they’ll be more YOU.

I do this myself. Customizing my service for each client has always been a big part of how I do my work. If cookie cutter solutions worked, no one would need me. Over the years, I’ve amassed tons of organizing ideas, plus information about habit formation, reaching goals, human behavior and psychology. I use all of that with each person I work with. I don’t have a proprietary system or a template that I use. Less boring for me and more effective for my clients.

The reason I’m thinking about this now is that I wanted to commit to getting up earlier so I could be more productive. It’s totally not working. I don’t like getting up early and I certainly don’t like going to bed early. I was pushing myself because it’s a given that if you rise earlier you’ll be healthy, wealthy and wise, right? And get the worm. And be a success in life. All that stuff.

There really aren’t any proven, absolute benefits to getting up early though. When I read about why people do it, I realized that this concept is great if you have a regular job and kids. People in that situation don’t have unclaimed time in their schedules so the only way to get it is by carving it out of the early morning. It makes sense.

I work for myself and I don’t have kids. I don’t schedule early client appointments. For the most part, my time is my own. So I can use it the way I want to! Obviously, if I wasn’t getting things done I might change things. But my schedule works for me. Getting up early is not necessary or desirable.

So, back to you. Have you tried to change some things and it hasn’t worked? Are there ideas you’ve heard in my podcast that sound great but aren’t really for you? If so, I hope you’ve been able to cobble pieces of ideas together to make something that does work for you.

If you haven’t figured it out yet, here are some common problems and solutions that may work better for you.

Problem 1: Trouble with focusing. Spend smaller amounts of time. Work on projects serially for as long as you can stay focused on them. Or do them simultaneously if that keeps you engaged. Multitasking is definitely NOT a productivity aid, but if you don’t mind that each project will take longer, switch around at will. You’ll finish things eventually and that’s what counts

Try the Time Timer. It’s a clock that shows the time you’ve set it for as a red section on its face. As the time gets shorter, the red section shrinks. It gives you a visual and physical sense of time passing. Numbers are abstract, but a shape getting smaller is easy to grasp.

Problem 2: Tidying up is boring! Try this: Set a time limit for tidying and make it a race. Or put on music. Get on the phone with someone who loves to talk so you can just listen while you work. Take a picture of your tidy desktop or bedroom chair once you finish tidying and post it on Facebook so your friends can congratulate you. If it’s hard to stick to one spot when you’re putting things away, go from room to room. Put one thing away in the living room, then go to the bedroom and find one thing to put away. Getting into motion can help with physical restlessness and tedium.

Problem 3: Routine tasks are boring. Take your work to another spot. Pay your bills out in the backyard for example. If you pay them with an online bank account, you can give each payee a cute nickname. Listen to a podcast! Change your experience of the task; clear off the table because it needs to be used to plan world peace, not because it’s a boring task that has to be done.

Problem 4: I don’t want to change, but I want to be organized! Anyone can be MORE organized, if not completely organized. The secret is achieving it your way, whether that means throwing stuff into a plastic trash bag to get it out of sight for a party, and then little by little putting all that stuff away (which is how I did it in college. The bottom of the bag was usually full of overdue library books), or keeping your business receipts in a shoe box under the bed, or doing a late night purging session because that’s when you can focus.

Your way means the way that you don’t resist doing, so you do it and that’s why it works. It may not be the most efficient but you’re doing it, little by little. The better way doesn’t matter because you won’t do it that way.

A Chinese medicine doctor once told me that boiling herbs was more effective medically than taking pills, but people wouldn’t boil the herbs because it took too long and smelled funny. So he prescribed pills because he knew his patients would take them and get better, instead of not boiling the herbs and not getting any better.

What you can do now. First, give yourself permission not to do any of those things you think are great ideas but you haven’t done them, for whatever reason. Just stop. That alone will give you some mental release. Let your mind be curious and open. Ask yourself how a person could do a particular task in a different way and see what pops up.


Subscribe:  iTunes  ⋅  Stitcher  ⋅  Soundcloud ⋅  YouTube  ⋅  Google Play

This podcast is based on my book, 52 Simple Ways to Get Organized, available on my website. Each week I go into greater depth about one of the 52 ways. Some weeks I’ll take on different organizing topics and reader suggestions.

If you’d like to comment on the podcast, you can leave a review on iTunes. I read all your reviews, and  your positive, creative comments help others find my podcast.

If you have a question for me that you’d like me to address on the podcast, please post it on my Facebook page, Instagram or Twitter.

Podcast 074: The power of labeling

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Subscribe:  iTunes  ⋅  Stitcher  ⋅  Soundcloud ⋅  YouTube  ⋅  Google Play

You can leave a review here!

It’s to be expected that organizers like to label things. They run around with their little machines and slap a label onto anything that’s not moving. I don’t go that far, and not everything needs a label.

Ease of finding things and ease of putting them away are two big reasons that getting organized matters, for anything you organize. It’s supposed to save you time and make your life easier, not turn you into an obsessive compulsive freak.

But in some cases labels come in super handy, and maybe not for the reasons you think.


Subscribe:  iTunes  ⋅  Stitcher  ⋅  Soundcloud ⋅  YouTube  ⋅  Google Play

This podcast is based on my book, 52 Simple Ways to Get Organized, available on my website. Each week I go into greater depth about one of the 52 ways. Some weeks I’ll take on different organizing topics and reader suggestions.

If you’d like to comment on the podcast, you can leave a review on iTunes. I read all your reviews, and  your positive, creative comments help others find my podcast.

If you have a question for me that you’d like me to address on the podcast, please post it on my Facebook page, Instagram or Twitter.