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Got issues? Organizing issues, that is March 28, 2005 10:19 PM

I started this group to connect people with organizing issues to people who have solutions. Where there's an issue, there's a cure! The web site I developed - www.organized-living.com -- is an informational and resource site that was created to help individuals create organized lifestyles. This subject is my passion and, as an expert, I've devoted a career to helping people improve their conditions in life. I'm a professional organizer who's also branched out into the interior decorating arena and you'll find my makeover site at www.splendidspacemakeovers.com. I hope this group will contribute to helping others get better organized. Join in and connect up!  [ send green star]
 
 March 29, 2005 1:24 AM

Hi Cyndi!
Thank-you for the invite. I am not a professional! I need all the help and information I can get. I believe there is a place for everything...it's finding that place that is a challenge for me.

Peace and One Love,
~Cathy~
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Being an inspiration is a good thing March 29, 2005 10:02 AM

Cathy,

I'm really happy you joined in -- and you don't have to be a professional to be an inspiration, and that's what I feel you are.

The thing with finding a place for something is really just a matter of a) seeing what doesn't have "a home" and then b) looking at where it could or should be and finally c) looking at options to put it there.  On C, this could be looking through catalogs or the Internet, or stores to find what kind of home is best.  Maybe it would require some wall shelving with decorative baskets to put stuff; maybe a container of some sort to group like-items into; or a decorative basket to hold it and display it.

I have ideas at my blog site... www.spacemakeovers.blogdrive.com.

Your colleague and new friend,
Cyndi

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Blog site correction March 29, 2005 10:08 AM

Cathy,
I gave you the wrong blog site for organizing ideas ... the one I wanted to refer is at: www.getorganized.blogdrive.com.

Cyndi

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 March 30, 2005 12:05 AM

Awww...Cyndi....you're too kind. I checked out the blog...I like it
I recently moved (a few months ago) and it's been an ongoing process to get things put away into new places. Of course, I always end up moving it...no place is ever quite permanent anymore. (It probably stems from having moved in the first place.)

Oh well...back to inspiring.....

Peace and One Love,
~Cathy~



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Moving isn't always a fresh start with "stuff" March 30, 2005 10:04 AM

I hear ya!  I recently moved myself, only this time I decided to purge 40% of my stuff and just let go of old things.  My new place is an upgrade and I didn't want to bring things into it that would make it look like my old place.

I, for one, like change.  Not everyone does, I'm sure.  And, we can't all afford to replace our furnishings and stuff, but it's a goal that can be done in baby, gradient steps. 

So, all my old decor stuff is gone, and I've gradually purchased new decor items that fit with my new theme for a room. 

Also, before my move, I got rid of anything that I had more of than I needed -- bedding, bath linens, pots/pans, you name it.  I really streamlined what I would need and it felt good!

Of course, when I boxed everything up for my move, I still had more boxes of packed stuff than I wanted to deal with -- how did that happen?! I wondered.

Boxes sat in my garage, all stacked neatly, albeit still overwhelming.  I made it a goal to unpack for 1-2 hrs a day until everything was unpacked.  Within 1 week, the job was done.

Easy for me to say?  Guess I just hate to wonder what's in those boxes I haven't unpacked yet!  Mysterys kill me

Cyndi

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 March 30, 2005 10:21 AM

Looks like we've all been moving 'cos I've just recently moved into my present home!

Rosie

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got issues? April 18, 2005 9:36 PM

It is so frustrating - my life is a mess, my house is a mess, my bills are a mess - and I am working all the time trying to get it all together.  I will try your suggestions.  Does anyone else get a lot of negative judgments from other people (including, especially, those who are supposed to love us and support us)?  . . . feeling overwhelmed and depressed. . .  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 April 20, 2005 9:31 AM

Hi Justina, I'm sending you a personal message as well but here's one for the thread: If you look at everything you have to sort out, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. Which means that you don't tackle any of it, and end up feeling even worse! You need to break it down and find the easiest, quickest things to act on. Once you've done those, you should feel more confident and positive, so you can move on to more complicated stuff. As slowly as you need to; getting there gradually is heaps better than simply feeling stuck. You also need to recognise that you can't change everything. The main example of this: other people's actions are often outwith your control. You can change the way you react to them, though, and your ways of coping with stress. Most important point: be kind to yourself. If you spend all your time and energy beating yourself up for your problems, you'll be too exhausted to do anything about them. Decide that you will do what you can do, and life starts to look more promising ...  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
Justina... April 20, 2005 1:26 PM

I'm with you. I have been feeling the same way for so long that it's hard to break the inertia and do anything about it.

BUT: Yesterday I cleaned the downstairs bathroom. I mean really cleaned it: toothbrush detailing and all. Hate to try to remember the last time I did that. And now all is sparkly and clean in ONE room of my house. I told my husband he can't go in that room...


Kinda sad that the nicest room in the house is the bathroom, huh? But I'm tackling the upstairs one today, so there will be two nice rooms soon. And I can just go in and gaze at my gleaming sink and feel pretty darned good about that...

Point is, I chose a small, very limited space to begin with, and so I was successful. Yes, it took some time, but it was worth it. After the bathrooms, I think I'll do the linen closet, then the mud room. Eventually I'll work up to the kitchen, the bedrooms... and then who knows? The biggies: my office, the living room and [o the horror] the basement.

Pick a small task, take breaks if you need them, and celebrate when you achieve something. That seems to work for me.




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 April 20, 2005 10:03 PM

I did that last week and got four rooms done.  Three of them are already messy again!  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 April 20, 2005 10:42 PM


I hate that! You work hard get a room clean and then barely have time to stand back and admire it!

~Cathy~
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 April 20, 2005 11:26 PM

Not only that, but I skipped school to do it!  I know, I shouldn't have...  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 April 21, 2005 12:30 AM

you wanna know what's really embarrassing?  I walked into my office tonight after a day's work, and found a small pile of paper on my desk!  I'm not supposed to make piles, I'm supposed to stay on top of things!  I'm still trying to find someone to blame.

 [ send green star]
 
 April 21, 2005 12:31 AM

  What about office trolls?  They sound like the sort that would do just that sort of thing!  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
Hi all April 21, 2005 12:44 AM

I just joined and am happy I found this place.  My place is a pack rats and rats haven.  None of the second yet but with spring being here I'm sure if I don't clean it up it something will be moving in.  My big problem is I put off everything to do another day and that day never comes.  I'm going on my second year in my apartment and my entire living room is packed with boxes.  The second bedroom is partically unpacked but cluttered with nameless stuff.  My living area where I eat, use my computer, sleep and watch tv is clutterd with mail, newspapers and more papers (lol).  The bedroom I can get in a managable and somewhat organized fashion.  I just feel so overwhelmed and after an hour or so I give up.  I go lay down on my bed and watch tv or get on the net. 

I don't have company over that I don't know well or shall I say don't know me well.  My friends love me but they really don't want to come here.  My place stays a mess.  I have a lot of collections I don't want to part with just need to get organized with it.  I also have a lot of boxes that are empty I need to get rid of but havn't because I don't what my neighbors to see me taking out boxes when my place should have been unpacked over a year ago.  I saw a show once on pack rats who had been diagnosed with O.C.D. (obsessive compulsive disorder)  I don't think I have it but when I watch that show on lifetime called, "how clean is your house?" it makes me wonder.  My place hasn't gotten as bad as those but it could.  It's really close to looking like I have some issues.  I know don't talk about it just clean it up.  Every once in a while that's what I do till like I said before I get tired and bored and quit. 

So ladies and gents I am here to learn from you and get my hiney in order.  Thanks for excisting.

Serena 

 

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 April 21, 2005 2:28 AM

I can definitely relate to that, Serena! I've learnt to accept that I am a scatterbrain, and my home will never be a tidy one. But there is a two-way link between our states of mind and our environment, so it's worth working on both. What would my living room tell you about me, at the moment? Mainly, that I am trying to do a lot of things at once. Too many? ... not today, but one particular project is taking over the room. So I'm going to prioritise that, then tidy it away. I have to keep on top of it, because I know how easily I can get overwhelmed. But my idea of "on top of it" is, I can see what I have to do and know that I can make time to do it. It's always a work in progress, as there's always more to do - but I'm fine with that. It's realistic. Tactics include: putting off new projects until I have at least packed up the older ones; deciding when items, ideas and paperwork have outlived their usefulness; and - my favourite! - finding ways to make tidying more interesting. Put on an energetic CD and resolve not to stop till the music does! Take three or four cardboard boxes and actually try to fill them with junk. Throw everything into one corner or another room, and re-arrange the furniture. Write down everything you can see in front of you, categorise it and divide it into piles, then pick a place to store them. (If it's already full, box up the piles and label them. Sort out that place when you have decided what to do with that stuff.) The other thing to remember: it might look worse before it looks better. Mine usually does, but as long as I'm organising it methodically I know that it'll work out. I don't know why I find it such fun to tidy up, or why I don't "indulge" more often. I like to think that the answer to both is: I like it to retain its novelty value ... PS: I've heard that "a tidy desk means a tidy mind". Hmm ... so an empty desk means ...?  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
Hey thanks for the tips April 21, 2005 8:51 PM

I'm going to try it.  The funny thing is I also like searching thru my junk.  I just have a problem getting to it and finishing it up.  I get so bored after awhile.  I feel like i'm missing out on something.  I need to clean up though so I can have a place to entertain  again.  I'll get started this weekend.

Thanks,

Serena

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Back-slid a bit... April 21, 2005 10:12 PM

Got as far as toting all the cleaning supplies upstairs and actually poured the rust remover into the toilet (awful water here), but that was it for yesterday. I wasn't home today, so am hitting that bathroom tomorrow, come hell or high water. And the first one still looks great... Think husband may really be afraid to set foot in there!

 [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
Organize with music! April 21, 2005 10:53 PM

SarahJane has it right!  Put on the music!

So Kristin, how 'bout bringing in some hi-energy music to the bathroom -- music always makes cleaning chores more fun for me (not that they are ever fun really, but at least more enjoyable).

And Serena, you do the same -- turn on some music and start tossing things into your sorting baskets / boxes / bins / whatevers!

My thing is, when the Rolling Stones play, I'm movin that vacuum around like it was my dance partner!

 [ send green star]

 
Just stuff issues April 27, 2005 11:47 PM

I confess - I have stuff.  I used to like stuff, but now it's all around me and seems to grow all by itself.  I know it had a little help from me at first, but I'm not sure where some of it came from now.  It seems like every drawer has stuff, every closet, cabinet, anything that provides a space to put something in or on has stuff.

I guess you could say I'm all stuffed up. 

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 April 28, 2005 3:13 AM

! I know that feeling, Nicole! Hoarding stuff is a habit, and - like any other habit - can be broken. I started breaking it by gathering together items that I knew I'd never use, or that "might come in handy some day" but hey, I could live without them. Into boxes. Into the charity shop. Out of my life. Actually, I'm going to have to do that again soon! Old habits die hard I found this difficult at first because sometimes I'd dispose of something I did find a use for, a few days too late! But I'm learning to be more practical and weigh up the options: which means more to me, having stuff on standby or having the space to live comfortably? It's a work in progress, as I'm still a hoarder by nature. My task for this week is sorting through the masses of computer parts I've accumulated; by tomorrow, I should have at least one fixed-up computer ready to pass on to someone else. And the rest can wait; it's been sitting there for long enough, so another day or two won't hurt! One day at a time, eh?  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 April 28, 2005 11:25 AM

SarahJane, you've got it on the boxes.  One thing that I have seen on those organizing shows is, if you have the space, keep the boxes somewhere for three to six months.  That way, you should know if you need or have a use for anything in the boxes.  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 April 30, 2005 12:45 AM

I can't seem to stay on track.  I clean off my bed (one half have papers and general stuff on it)  I clean it off and within a day or two it's back junky again.  lol The thing is it really only get cleaned off when company comes by or it's time to wash the linen which use to be once a week now i've gotten so lazy it's once a month.  I know I know i'm slowly turning into one of those crazy people with stacks and stacks of clutter that's so bad when it finally gets cleaned out they find dead animals and rodents underneath. 

I need to do the box thing.  I have tons and tons of those.  I just need to fill them and toss them out.  I know i'm all talk and no action.  This weekend I'm working but i'm going to get a handle on my bedroom clutter first then organize the kitchen and toss out all the unused stuff in boxes in my living room.  But first this weekend the bedroom and bedroom closet. 

I'll get it together soon,  just keep up with the tips and hints.  They really keep me motvated even if all I get to do is read and get ideas.  lol 

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 April 30, 2005 12:52 AM

One more thing all,  I am so glad we are all here in the group together supporting eachother.  It feels good to know i'm not alone. 

Serena  

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 April 30, 2005 1:45 AM

Serena...group support is great...just knowing you aren't the only one; sorta gives you peace of mind!

Another thing is hearing my 26 year old son tell me that he has to go and clean the kitchen and mop the floor....or that he and his 5 year old daughter are cleaning up their house ...together!
(I guess all that time spent getting him to help clean up when he was younger is paying off!)

~Cathy~
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That is so cute May 01, 2005 6:34 AM

Cathy that is so cute and great.  When I was a kid me and my cousins use to pretend to be actors and singers.  We made up plays and acted them out for the family and we also sang songs as a group like the supremes.  One thing we never did was pretend to clean anything lol.  Even when we played house and had our little town.  Someone would be the store clerk, someone would be the teacher, and someone would be the police but still nobody cleaned.  So it's great he's put that in his make believe life.  When he's out on his own it will be good for him.  I can remember when I was a teen my room was so junky that my grandmother and my aunt cleaned up my room while I was at school.   I came home and all my papers and old toys would be thrown in the trash.  I had a problem even back then.  I'm great at doing others for work, I on a part-time basis take care of people with mental retardation.  I clean everything till it's sparkling.  It's just for me I believe it's a mental issue.  Maybe I just won't take the time for myself to care more for myself.   I guess I have real deep issues.  I'm working on it.    [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 May 01, 2005 9:39 AM

Serena...he is out on his own. He is a single parent! He's also had messy room mates...he hates it when they don't do their "fair share" of the housework.

I have some of those same issues...it's easier to do for someone else than to do for myself. I was the primary caregiver to my parents for nearly 12 years.

Your grandmother and aunt sound ed like my mother...she would go through our dresser drawers and if they were a mess...we'd come home from school only to find the contents of the drawers emptied on our beds! (I hated that!)

~Cathy~
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issues May 04, 2005 9:14 PM

You guys know we're not different than say 4 out of maybe 10 people.  Didn't get to do all I wanted to do last weekend but this next weekend i'm off and at least sat i'll get busy.     [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
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