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Are you Decluttering or Churning?

When you decide to declutter a room, you open yourself up to having to make many, many decisions. 
Decisions about what to keep. 
Decisions about what to let go. 
Decisions about storage of items you've decided to keep.
Decision after decision. 
And if you're a tad adverse to making decisions, sometimes it's just easier to churn. 


If you haven't heard of churning, let me explain to you the difference in these two processes.  Decluttering is when you remove things you do not need from a place, in order to make it more pleasant and more useful.  The number of items in a specific area is usually reduced.  Churning on the other hand, does little to reduce the number of possessions in a space as it's simply moving things around to different areas.  Decision making avoidance at its best.


Many people have difficulty making decisions around what needs to leave their homes.  When I'm working with clients I recommend we set up some "rules" before starting work to help with the letting go process.  These rules are individual to each client and specific to their circumstances.  Some possible rules for disposal could be:

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Why Professional Organisers aren't Cleaners, and Vice Versa.

What is the difference between a Professional Organiser and a Cleaner?  Our friends at Wikipedia offer the following answers:

"Professional Organisers offer a wide variety of services, from designing a functional closet to organising a cross-country move.  For homeowners, a Professional Organiser might plan and reorganise the space of a room, improve paper management, or coach in time management , or goal setting"

Whereas the Cleaning definition is:

"The action of making something clean, especially the inside of a house.  e.g. 'the housekeeper will help with the cleaning'"

Basically, cleaning involves using physical things like a mop, broom, bucket, vacuum cleaner etc.  I don't pretend to be an expert cleaner, but I do have knowledge and ability in the Professional Organisation arena.  Professional Organisers each have different areas of interest and expertise.  The below list will give you a good idea of the kinds of assistance you can expect from a Professional Organiser:

  • Help with decision making.  Overwhelm can mean people get stuck and need assistance with knowing where to start and how to make good decisions.
  • Setting up systems that work.  Fads come and go, but really good systems are developed taking into consideration your specific situations.  We're all individuals so it just makes sense that no one system will suit everyone.

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Sorting through your loved one's belongings.


This would have to be one of the hardest things to do.  To state the obvious, feelings of anger, love, frustration and overwhelming grief will rise to the top.

I've had it said to me that it's much easier to use an agency, like Time Made, to clear an estate property.  This is mainly because, although any agency should work within their client's emotional state and be totally empathetic to what they're experiencing, the reality is that an agency isn't emotionally attached to the "stuff".  This means a property can be cleared quickly and efficiently.

If you are going to work with someone to help you sort through an estate, it's a good idea to take the following things into consideration:

  • Firstly, make sure whoever is helping you knows that you have the final say on what is moved on, and what remains.
  • Ask to see references.  Does the agency/person come recommended?  Have they a recent criminal history check?  What experience or qualifications do they have?  These are all important questions to ask.
  • The older generation is extremely talented at squirrelling away and hiding valuables.  Make sure you check inside every wallet/purse/handbag before moving it on.  I've found valuables in estate properties:
    • behind picture frames,
    • inside curtain rods,
    • under beds,
    • inside tins in the garage.

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Decluttering 101: Tips for 2019


Happy New Year to you all and welcome to 2019!

Many people I know are talking about getting organised and clearing themselves of clutter in 2019.  I'm a great supporter of being organised because it makes my life so much easier and saves me heaps of valuable time.

There are many organising methodologies available, ranging from the incredibly strict to the more relaxed.  We all work differently, so how you go about getting organised depends on your individual preferences and personality type.  Are you a visual person, or do you prefer a minimalistic look?  Are you tactile, or do clear surfaces make you smile on the inside?  No matter what your preferences, there are a few things I think you should take into consideration:

  1. Zoning:  It comes back to what grandma used to say.  "Keep like with like and everything has a home."  Basically it's saying it makes sense to have all your office equipment in the office, not spread all over the house.  Same goes for linen, saucepans, crockery etc.......you get the idea.

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