Bossin’ it

First, find a safe space to work.

Offices where you have to go to work are only good if you’re the boss.  If you have an office at home, you’re very lucky.  An office is a great place to get organised, and it’s even an ok place to be a bit disorganised and still look pretty cool at the same time.

If you had an office at home but can’t remember where you left it/where it is, hmm, not so good, but on the plus side, you know it’s there somewhere.  All you need to do is find it.

I’m being flippant – one needs to treat these situations with humour, or they become overwhelming.  To return to the subject, an office is a wonderful place to start getting yourself organised.

So pull on your organising trousers and let’s fix this.  Maybe you have a spare bedroom, or a spare bed, or a spare table (a trestle/decorator’s table will do), maybe even a garage floor (but beware of dust).  Any big space like this will help you to sort stuff out into piles of

  1. stuff you need
  2. stuff you don’t need
  3. stuff you aren’t sure about

You may even be able to sort it further, like specific bill types – but if you want to work fast and efficiently, stick with these three piles first.

This all assumes you have such rooms or organising spaces available.  If you read this and think ‘Hm, I can’t find a useable office space like Neil suggests’, then your problem is a bit more sticky, and you might want to give someone like me a call.  It’s a bit like unravelling a badly packed bundle of Christmas lights, and at those times it helps to have a second person to help out.

Give me a call on 07985 490 810 and find out how I can help.

Don’t let the clutter boss you about.  Boss your clutter!

Your Stuff and You

A balanced diet is made up from the five essential food groups.  (I always thought they were proteins, carbs, fats, vitamins and fibre, but a quick check on the web suggests all manner of alternatives, oh well).

There are four seasons and four tops.  If any of them are missing, consider yourself short-changed.

When you’re trying to get organised, there are three basic piles of stuff

  • 1) stuff you need
  • 2) stuff you don’t need
  • 3) stuff you aren’t sure about

In fact, at any time, these are the three basic types of stuff anyone will have.  You’ll have a few of the first thing, rather more of the second, and lots of the third.  The trick is to know how to keep (2) to a minimum, and how to turn (3) into (2).

We’ll look at how to do this in the future.  For now, just keep this in mind if you’re ever looking at your stuff and wondering what to do about it.

Note: Turning (3) into (1) rarely happens, in my experience.

About Me

Hi, my name is Christine Durrant.

I have been in business as a professional de-clutterer since 2009. Before I started my business I spent 6 months helping a friend to sort her flat. She was kind enough to let me take photos and also give me feedback on what was helpful and what was not. I am greatly indebted to her for allowing me into her life and for the encouragement she gave me to start my business.

7 years on and I am still enjoying helping people to rediscover the space they have but can’t see for clutter. Possessions are great until they stop us from enjoying our living space.

If your possessions are beginning to possess you then why not give me a call and find out how I can help you to reorganise the space and where necessary thin out those possessive possessions!

Are we more creative when surrounded by mess?

I am a professional organiser but I am not an inherently tidy person or in favour of minimalist living. People worry that I am going to come in and ‘make them’ get rid of all their stuff. Nothing could be further from the truth. My role is to help you manage your belongings so that they enhance your life rather than stifle it.

Some people need to reduce the quantity of stuff in their home because they can no longer function in the space. Clutter has piled on top of clutter and they can’t find anything even though they know it is in there somewhere. This leads to them spending more money buying something they know that they own but they cannot find. Now there is yet more clutter to deal with in the daily struggle to function.

In these homes clutter is not creative, it is very stressful, so stressful in fact that people develop mental blinkers which enable them to cut out the clutter so that they are not overwhelmed by it.

As an organiser, I do not see it as my job to leave you with an immaculate desk or living area in which you can no longer find anything. Many people need visual clues to remind them of their ‘to do list’. My role is to help you sort out what is working as a system and what is not. Once we discover the things that do work then we can bring that knowledge to the areas that don’t work for you and revise them so that they work too.

My husband sent me a link to an article today ‘The Psychology behind Messy Rooms: Why The Most Creative People Flourish in Clutter‘ and I found it fascinating reading.
http://elitedaily.com/money/entrepreneurship/psychology-behind-messy-rooms-messy-room-may-necessarily-bad-thing/708046/

Certainly I have found many of my clients to be interesting and creative people. They are also extremely generous with their time, devoting much of it to outside the home activities helping others. The combination of these elements can have the effect of accumulating mess that brings a resulting chaos in its wake. That is why they call me in.

If any of this resonates with you, leave a comment.

For practical help and advice, call me!

Christine
01803 527072
07794978095

Getting Inspired

Inspiration is a wonderful thing and sometimes all it takes is reading some one else’s words or hearing some one speak. This year’s APDO-UK http://www.apdo-uk.co.uk/ conference held in London last week was truly inspirational. For those not in the know APDO stands for the Association of Professional Declutterers and Organisers. Yes, there is actually an association and it is full of talented and compassionate people who it is a privilege to know.

We networked, we listened, we learned and we grew in knowledge and understanding. Organising is not every one’s forte which is why we exist to bring order and calm into people’s lives and to teach skills to enable people to be able to maintain that order.

One of my clients once told me that no one had ever taken the time to show her how to organise her things. They told her to tidy up but gave no clues as to how to do it. When we began working together she was able to acquire those skills and succeed in the task. Now she enjoys sorting and organising her flat so that it is a more comfortable place to live.

As Sarah Cottman, http://www.horder.com.au/ our keynote speaker from Australia said: ‘You (professional organisers and declutterers) are uniquely situated to facilitate change, to encourage, equip and empower others with your gift.’ She encouraged us to transfer our organising skills to our clients so that they will be empowered to live clutter free lives.

Getting rid of the physical clutter helps to clear mental space. It allows you to function easily in your home. Being able to find what you need when you need it helps you to keep focused on the task in hand and get the job done more quickly. When everything has a place then it is easy to put it back. The problems arise when things do not have a home to go to. Then they start to pile up on surfaces and one thing gets buried by another.

If you feel inspired with the coming of spring to have a good clear out of physical space why not call me, Christine, on 07794 978095 and see how I can help?

If you don’t live in the South West of England, then take a look at http://www.apdo-uk.co.uk to find a declutterer near you.

Happy New Year!

It’s a new year and I hope for you all it will be a good one.

I wonder how many of you carefully kept your wrapping paper and cards for reuse next year? In these days of waste it is a good thing to do. If you intend reusing the pictures from your cards as gift tags or to decorate the front of your Christmas letter, why not do the cutting now so there is less to store and the card fronts will be ready to use?

Many people buy their wrapping paper and cards in the Sales for next year. May I suggest that you check what you still have before going mad in the Sales? A bargain ceases to be a bargain if you have enough for the next decade already.

It is worth having a place to keep such things where they are easily available and won’t get spoiled. I have one drawer devoted to gifts cards and wrapping paper. It helps me to keep track of what I have and I am less likely to either forget what I have already bought or lose it. Believe me, I have done both in the past!

Be warned, buying presents that ‘may‘ come in useful for ‘somebody‘ can be a false economy. Very often these gifts lie in the drawer unused because they are never quite the right thing. Buying something that is perfect for someone and labeling it as such is more helpful.

If you know that the Sales bring out the bargain hunter in you and you don’t have room for any more in the house. Do yourself a favour and stay at home with a good book or movie! It’s much easier to avoid temptation than resist it.

If you would like help to get those bargains organised ready for next Christmas why not call me? A short session now could save you hours next year!

The world I want to live in

Corrina Gordon Brown’s blog on ‘Movement marketing’ http://youinspireme.co.uk/2013/what-you-should-really-be-marketing/ got me thinking.  What sort of world do I want to live in and how does my business fit in with it?

Calm, productive homes

I want people to enjoy living in their domestic environment.  I want them to be able to find the stuff they need when they need it.  I’d like to help them organise their space so that they can maximize storage and minimize searching.  A place where everything has a natural home.  A place where they can feel at ease because ease is built in.

A clutter busting session isn’t about getting rid of all your treasured possessions.  It’s about rediscovering the gems you own and have forgotten.  It’s about housing possessions in a more effective manner so they are hard to lose and easy to find.  It’s about reclaiming your physical space which has the happy byproduct of increasing your mental space and well being.  It’s about loving the place you live in and looking forward to going home at night.

Do you share my vision?

Leave a comment

It doesn’t necessarily need a full day to get this kind of order back in your life.  If you’d like to know more about how de-cluttering can de-stress your life, get in touch!  I’d love to help.

Call Christine on 07794978095