I live by lists.
It would be impossible not to. Even though I’m the kind of person who could “plan” a trip with few details—leaving the rest to spontaneity and chance—in my day to day life, organization is paramount. I balance multiple jobs, social engagements and appointments with to-lists and reminders in a planner that is definitely among my most prized possessions.
But, that’s not to say I carry that level of organization to every aspect of my life. And my closet—and habit of hoarding clothes—is a particular pain point. That is, until I met Krista Benoit from O2 – Order + Organization.
I was privy to one of her presentations, explaining the science and psychology behind clutter and the benefits of unloading items that may have long since served their purpose.
The result? I happily say sayonara to three (!!) large bags of clothes that were either past their prime, or no longer reflected my personal style. It was liberating and really facilitated an impending move. Not to mention, the clothes were all donated to a good cause.
To tell you more about the true art that lies in tidying up, Krista—herself—has written this wonderful guest post:
Feeling overwhelmed? Drowning in clutter? Chronically late for appointments? Missing deadlines? Can’t find a file? You may be in need of a professional organizer.
A professional organizer is someone who helps clients create customized solutions to increase efficiency at home or at work. They assist people to put new habits in place to address specific needs in specific situations that may be causing stress or may be holding you back from enjoying the things that are really important to you.
The professional organizing industry is exploding as more and more people recognize they need help to manage multiple demands on their time and in their space.
Clutter and stress
Clutter causes stress and frustration. This is a fact! Getting rid of clutter causes anxiety. Another fact. So, we have a tendency to avoid anxiety by hanging onto our stuff and choosing to live with the stress and frustration associated with our disorganized ways. A common concern that comes up when someone is considering editing down their stuff to a more manageable amount is: If I let go of all my stuff, will I still be me? The answer is yes.
Here’s a glimpse into how a professional organizer can help get you started living a life with less excess and overstock, but with more time, energy and money.
First, figure out what part of your cluttered life is bugging you the most. On a scale of 1 to 10, what areas fall in the 7-10 range? If you start here, you will feel some immediate relief because you are tackling the priority areas. The downside is that these projects tend to be the biggest ones. So, often is it better to start with the low-hanging fruit (i.e. the areas that are most easily achievable for you and do not require a lot of effort). Small steps do lead to bigger ones.
Discard, recycle, donate, sell
Next question … are you really ready to discard, throw things away, recycle, donate and sell? This is the biggest hurdle for most. Acknowledging that you have too much stuffand then taking the plunge to thoroughly toss what you don’t need—what is broken, what has outlived its purpose in your life or is generally causing you stress—is a mental block for many people.
If you do manage to figure out what areas you need/want to address, and then commit to discarding, it is time for the fun part: storing and organizing. There are lots of great products and creative ideas, including DIY and crafty projects, that can help your space look and feel fantastic, but keep in mind that décor is not organization. Focus on how it works, not how it looks.
Purge intensely and completely
For the purpose of this post, we’ll focus on clothes. We live in a fashion conscious world. There are YouTubers who guide us in what brands to buy, and online shopping makes it super easy to order clothing, shoes and accessories from the comfort of home. The rule to follow with wardrobe editing is to purge intensely and completely. Only keep items that thrill you and that make you feel like a million bucks every single time you wear them. Ditch the rest. You only need 25-30% of what you currently have in your closet right now and only if you truly love these items. Why hang onto clothing that doesn’t spark joy when you wear it?
This is only one example. Whether it’s toys, paper, beauty products, or craft supplies, O2 – Order + Organization can provide the knowledge, and support, to help you dive into any organizing project at home and see immediate results.
Need more info?
Interested in professional organizing services or want to learn more? Contact Krista for a free telephone discovery session (819-682-5298). One simple phone call could lead to dramatic changes in your life.