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Stow On The Go: Believe In The Power Of Organizing: January 10, 2014

January Edition: Less Resolution And More Revolution

One thing I always tell my clients when they are about to start working with me as an organizer is that it’s going to get a lot worse before it gets a lot better.  They think I’m joking until we are about two hours into a session and there is a gigantic pile of belongings that used to reside inside a closet sitting in the middle of their bedroom floor. I am usually standing somewhere on the other side sorting and taking inventory of what needs to be done while the client is getting a good look at all their private “treasures” and feeling very anxious.  

I don’t set out to create anxiety but it is part of the process. The mess has always existed only now it exists on the bedroom floor instead of inside the closet. Facing the disorder, seeing the chaos, can be alarming. But we need to be alarmed to take action sometimes. We need to really see the problem so that we can face it and, eventually, solve it. We need to make the mess in order to clean it up.

So in January of a new year, we make resolutions and we say that we will “get organized”. But it will take more than a resolution. It will mean a revolution because, in order to truly get rid of clutter, we need to embrace change. It requires resolve, determination and, of course, a plan:

1. Set your goal. Be specific. Give yourself a deadline.  

2. Don’t be afraid to make a mess. You need to know what you are facing in order to deal with it.

3. Stick with it. If it has to be a little every day or once a week, don’t get disheartened.  

4. Get support. Ask a friend to help you out. Encourage your family to get involved. Call a professional if you really get stuck.  

5. Maintain. Once the work is done and the area is cleaned out, don’t start filling it up again. Enjoy and embrace the space you’ve made.  

So let’s not just resolve to get organized this year-let’s promise ourselves something more. How about real change. Let’s promise ourselves a bit of freedom from the embarrassment of a cluttered home. Let’s promise ourselves a relaxing space to sit and read without clutter. Let’s promise ourselves a healthier home free of dust and allergens. We will not be victims to our possessions. We will fight back and win.  

Vive la révolution. Happy New Year!