Archive for the ‘Newsletters’ Category

Sorting Tips for Decluttering Projects – Relocate Bins

In Newsletters on March 15, 2022 at 3:41 pm

When I go to a client’s house to help them declutter I bring multiple sized plastic sorting bins. There is one specific bin that always has the same purpose for every project. That bin I refer to as, “relocate”.

When you start a big organizing project and it involves decluttering and sorting it can be easy to get distracted when you have to relocate an item into another room. By having a relocate bin/s for other rooms you can worry about those items later. BUT! There are guidelines in order to efficiently use this system.

Rules for “Relocate” Bin:

  1. Label each bin for which room it will go.
  2. Be realistic with what you are adding to these bins.
  3. Don’t add anything that can’t be put away easily (You want to make sure you aren’t creating side projects by adding items in which a whole other organizing project is created.)
  4. Keep time and energy to make sure the bins are emptied.
  5. If the bins are growing too high. Take a break and empty them during the project so it isn’t overwhelming to tackle.
  6. Ask for help from a friend or family member if the items are easy to relocate and put away.

Example of how to utilize a relocate bin:

Imagine you are organizing your basement and you find some tools that you thought would stay in the basement. However, you have a tool chest upstairs in the garage.

If you are not sure where to relocate something because it does not have a designated home, put it as close as possible in the vicinity to items that it is related to. Think of your things as family and relatives or friends and acquaintances. Flashlights and headlamps are like family but a book light is more like a relative. They all serve similar purposes, but are used for different activities and may not live together.

This method is when you are trying to put away and relocate a pile of items at the end of a project. You may have limited energy left. It is important to put the items away with purpose vs. shoving it anywhere and forgetting about it.

If you have something like a book light and you don’t know where it should live, stick it with the flashlights in the meantime. You may decide later that it might be best to live with friends like the books you are currently reading on the side table by the couch, or acquaintances like books marks in your nightstand.

Happy Organizing!


How To Let Go When You Have An Emotional Attachments To A Material Object

In Newsletters on March 9, 2022 at 3:42 pm

I LOVE snowboarding! Many moons ago I bought myself a new snowboard. I outgrew it, I didn’t spend much on it but I had an emotional attachment to it. It provided me freedom, expression and fun during high school. Finally I realized that it was not getting any use and was sitting around collecting dust. I had trouble with the idea of letting it go. It was possible to turn it into a shelf or a bench or something creative but it still had plenty of life left. Someone out there would be thrilled to have it.

I live a pretty minimal life and I don’t prefer to have things sitting around if I have no use for it. It was hard to think about simply donating it anywhere. I came up with an idea to help myself let it go. There are so many people out in the world that would value our “junk”. I did not have a close friend or family member to give it to. That is an idea I would usually suggest to a client.

My solution was craigslist! I listed it on craigslist for free. I requested emails explaining why they would like a snowboard. I got a wonderful email from a woman who had a daughter in college that needed one. She was planning a trip with her friends to learn and didn’t have a huge budget to rent or buy. I met the mother in a parking lot and was able to pass my snowboard along. It fulfilled the emotional need in order to let go.

If you struggle with letting go, look for those who would value it and get better use out of it.

4 Attachments to Physical Clutter

In Newsletters on March 8, 2022 at 8:38 pm

If you have trouble decluttering this is for you! Every item in your home has 4 things attached to it.


4.Physical Space.

1. Energy

Everything around us holds energy. Too much energy can feel overstimulating. The energy of the things around us can affect our day to day lives in a negative or positive way, just like people. Quantum physics tell us that objects are made up of atoms that are spinning and vibrating all the time. Think about the difference of being in an empty room vs being in the middle of a room that is full of lots of stuff. We all know that there is a difference of how that feels. Think about an attic full of stuff above our heads or the junk stuffed under the bed where you rest. There is no right or wrong, clutter is a relative term. The boundary is physical and mental health and safety. Some of us get anxiety with too much stuff around. Others feel good being surround by their things. The reasons are complex but getting to know yourself is the starting point.

Let’s put this lesson into practice and start recognizing the stuff that has negative energy. The stuff that holds negative energy are the things that represent old habits, toxic relationships, old ideas or anything that doesn’t represent the better parts of you. Can you recognize the stuff that holds positive energy? A photo of a good friend, art, plants, your favorite colors or anything that is an expression of you now of who you are aspiring to be.

Have you ever heard of feng shui? Feng Shui is the practice of balance and good flow of energy within our environment. It commonly includes the elements of nature; plants, water, metal, fire, air, wood, minerals.

You may not always be in the position to get rid of the negative family member but, you have the choice to remove the objects that are draining your energy. Once you understand how you respond to the energy of an item then you can decide to keep it or let it go. The energy that you sense will trigger an emotional reaction and the next step from there is to then recognize and name that emotion.

2. Emotion.

We have emotional attachments to the things around us. If you can feel energy of the things around you then you will sense an emotion within. Are you able to recognize and name those emotions? An emotional attachment is an emotional connection or bond to an object or person. The boundary for an unhealthy vs healthy attachment is when we allow that external item to regulate our mood. The ideal is to be able to regulate our mood from within and not by the external world. Emotional attachment to material possessions is temporary. If we attach our self worth to materials, then what happens when we don’t have them anymore? You are just as valuable with or without those things.

Pretend you won a million dollars in this moment. You are still the same human with the same thoughts and habits. If you can embody the feeling of winning a million dollars, you are already rich! Thirteen years ago I moved from Florida back to my hometown in Pennsylvania. I stuffed everything I owned into my small car and sold the rest. I didn’t have a penny to my name, I lost my job and my current relationship came to an end. The stuff around me made feel valuable because my self worth was at an all time low. Good news! My life improved shortly after I moved. I started my professional organizing business and worked on my inner happiness. My strong dependency and value of material things began to fade.

If I asked you right now, “How do you feel?” Would you be able to name an emotion? I use to live in between happy or anxious. I didn’t understand that there was a range of emotions. Anxiety can also feel like, overwhelmed, worry and insecurity. Happy can also feel like joy, freedom or passion. Slowing down, taking many deep breaths is the path to knowing how you feel. If you struggle with identifying your emotions, search for tools and practices to help you get there. Don’t be afraid to seek help from therapists and friends.

While decluttering your home, ask yourself questions to evoke emotions. Do I love this? Does this add value to my life? Do I use this? Will someone else value this more? Is this something I could borrow instead of owning it? Will I even remember I have this when I need it?

Have you ever heard of a full body yes? It’s like when your at a clothing store trying on an outfit and you feel so good about yourself that you don’t care what it costs. Practice recognizing those moments because don’t you want your life to be full of full body yes’?!

When I am decluttering with my clients I asked them, “Tell me about this item”. I watch their facial expressions, their body language, and I listen closely. Then I just mirror back what I see. “Hmmm, it sounds like you really love that or ooohhh sounds like you have a lot of guilt about letting that go?” Sometimes we just need a sounding board. I still struggle letting go from time to time and will ask someone to help me talk it through. Practice asking yourself, “How do I feel?” on a daily basis so you can sharpen those decluttering skills.

3. Responsibility. Stuff you have to maintain, clean, replace batteries, fix, etc.

How much do you really want to care for your belongings? You might remember the classic story of the kids who want a puppy and continue to beg their parents for one. The parents respond sternly by explaining that is a big responsibility and that the kids aren’t ready. The lesson of getting family dog teaches children to take ownership and understand responsibility and commitment. What a great way to teach the life skills of thinking things through, and anticipating the responsibility attached to acquiring an animal or an object. See where I am going with this?

Whenever I make a purchase I ask myself, “What are the responsibilities attached to this?” There can be a lot: cleaning, dusting, fixing, protecting, fixing etc… When we overwhelm ourselves with clutter the care level has a tendency to drop. We are trying to stay afloat by keeping it all organized vs decluttering and honing in on those few things that we love.

Quality over quantity is the lesson. It’s like having a large group of acquaintances vs. having a small core group of really good friends. Next time you are out and about to buy something impulsively, slow down, take a moment to think it through. Do you have the time, energy and space to care for this?

4. Physical Space. Stuff takes up physical space, do you have the space for it?

Everything we own takes up space. Before you buy something do you ever ask yourself, “Do I have a place to put this?” Having awareness and good plan before you make large or impulsive purchases can keep you from getting backed up in your storage spaces.

“Out with the out and in with the new”, is the general concept. It is important to create habits and systems around letting the old stuff go when the new stuff comes in. There is only so much physical space available in a home. Be very aware when stuff starts to overflow cabinets, containers, drawers and shelves. When you define a category into a space, you will recognize when it starts to overflow its contained area. That is the visual cue that it is time to declutter that spot. For example: If you go out an buy new cups for your kitchen cabinet. When you bring them home to add them to your cabinet if they don’t fit, don’t cram them in, but get rid of a few olds ones to make space. Don’t just throw the old ones somewhere only to sit around and collect dust. Incorporate a donation box within your household and add them to it. Make sure you have an easy donation drop off nearby so the box doesn’t sit around. You can also look into donation pickup trucks. If you setup routine donation pickups then it can hold you accountable to get those donations out and ready! Think of it like putting out your trash for pickup.

Did you know that we wear 20% of our clothing 80% of the time? When you buy new clothes and bring them home get rid of the ones you no longer wear. Then you won’t need to do major closet overhauls if you are able to keep up with it. Do this with your pantry, electronics, toys, gadgets, and beauty products in the bathroom.

I challenge you to level up your decluttering skills by trying something new. If you can clear space in a cabinet or drawer, leave it empty. Try not to fill it right away. Give yourself more space for living and growing! The physical space around you reflects the life you want to live. Give yourself a clutter free space to grow and flourish. If you weigh yourself down with mental and physical clutter, then how can you be free to fly?!

Please remember that organizing is a life skill. It either comes naturally, taught by your mentors or learned by educating yourself and with practice.

Happy Organizing!

Recycle Toxic Clutter

In Newsletters on May 8, 2015 at 6:01 pm

Oil based paints, wood stains, weed killers, pool chemicals, pesticides, flammable liquids, antifreeze, CFL lightbulbs, lead acid batteries are examples of toxic clutter sitting around our homes. Disposing many of these items into the trash is illegal and extremely toxic to our environment. However, finding a place to correctly dispose of them might be challenging. Here are some answers and resources.

If you contact your local township they should be able to direct you to all local resources available for disposal. If your lucky, your township will offer toxic recycling locations periodically throughout the warmer months. It is possible to go to different locations such as mechanics for motor oil, firehouse for flammable items, hardware stores for neon lights or cfl bulbs. But running around to all different stores can be time consuming. Finding a “one stop shop” to get rid of all your toxic clutter is a lot easier.

This summer iOrganize will pickup your toxic recycling for a small fee if you live in the general area.It is limited to 25 gallons or 200 lbs. worth of toxic material per. day.

Here are the schedules for my two local county toxic recycling program schedule.  Montgomery County,PA

Bucks County,PA

Do You Really WANT To Be Organized?

In Newsletters on April 30, 2015 at 5:26 am

Our society has a tendency to place a lot of pressure on how we maintain our homes. Many may feel embarrassed to have a messy home to the extent of hiding piles when company comes over. This outside influence to be organized creates pressure for many people, way above what they may desire and how they prefer to function. Remember that messy doesn’t always necessarily mean unorganized.

As much as I am a fan of living simple and being organized, it is relative. My level of simplicity certainly does not match everyone else. So when I show up to work with a new client, some of my first questions are to find out why they want to organize their space. Also, where does their motivation come from? It is within these questions that we can discover if their true desires to be more organized is there.

When I get a call to work with a client and it is coming from a friend or family member a red flag goes up for me. Does the person that they are volunteering want me to be there? If they are not willing, and/or do not care to be more organized, it will be an uphill battle.

My point is that if you have struggled with staying organized for a long time and you sit with that thought for awhile, it is possible you could be unconsciously trying to keep up with societies pressure of keeping your house like Martha Stewart. Ok, so your house might be a little messy, but if it isn’t bothering you, and it isn’t creating any health or life problems then you might be able to find peace in that thought.

This might sound weird coming from me. But my focus is to help people find peace in their homes. To make life easier in the place you rest your head and relax with your family. I myself have to remember that I don’t need to be perfectly organized at all times, especially if it is coming from a place of anxiety that people will judge me because of my business. I am at peace with my current level of organization.

Productivity Tip

In Newsletters on March 3, 2015 at 5:18 am

Sometimes you may procrastinate on a task or project and not understand why. You may have even made a list of “to-dos”. But what exactly are the words that you are writing down? Are you trying to do a task that takes multiple steps? Long lists of vague tasks can be a very overwhelming feeling and an easy one to avoid. What’s important is breaking it down by asking, “What is the next action?”
The following information I learned is from David Allens book, “Getting Things Done.” The art of stress free productivity. I incorporate it into my every day.
If you find yourself trying to accomplish a task or project try asking yourself, “What is the next action?” When doing this, be specific. Being too general or vague keeps you from jumping right into action. Provide yourself with an action word that leads you directly into what needs to be accomplished. Next time you revisit that project, you don’t have to slow your mind down to decide what is next!
*Sometimes the next step is simply taking 5 minutes to decide what the steps will be! But you have to recognize that!

Going Paperless with Neat

In Newsletters on February 12, 2015 at 4:07 pm

I recently had the opportunity to work with one of the new products from the company Neat. It was the NeatDesk Scanner

My client had purchased it and she wanted to scan in some photos for a project. Without knowing much about this machine I got started and it was rather simple to use. There were three slots available to add documents; business cards, and receipts. The scans were fast and were saved right to the computer. What a big difference compared to a regular printer scanner.

After using the NeatDesk For Mac for 3 hours to scan only photos, it got me curious as to how many people are really having paperless lives due to scanning their documents. After reading some reviews, it seems that it could possibly be more labor intensive to try to go paperless depending on what type of papers you have in your life and also how tech savvy you are.

I think anyone would benefit from this product if they have paper archives taking up space. The software is supposed to be able to read the documents that your scanning and file them in your computer, but it seems that you still have to double check to make sure it is filing correctly. From what I am gathering, this scanner would be good for a one and done project of inactive documents. But if your trying to constantly scan papers in every day and your not technically inclined or patient, it may not be the fix for your paper clutter.

So in my opinion going paperless with NeatDesk may not be as smooth for everyone. Quickly popping a paper into your filing cabinet might still be the simplest way to organize your paper.

Ways To Shred Your Confidential Papers

In Newsletters on January 16, 2015 at 12:47 am

There are multiple ways you can shred your confidential papers. You can do it yourself or you can delegate it. Some ways are free and some have a price. Here are the multiple options available if you find yourself falling behind with your shredding. iOrganize will be offering a shredding service in the near future that will allow you to see the shredding done in front of you and in the comforts of your home for a great competitive price!

Buy A Shredder

You can buy shredders that shred 5 sheets at a time or even 20 sheets at time. Prices range from $20 to $500 for a reasonable sized shredder for your home. Size is also something to consider. What is important is that your shredder is somewhere in your home where it is easily accessible whenever you have paper to shred. Because I bring my shredder to appointments, I can only carry a medium sized shredder. The shredder I have been using for my business for 6 years is this Dynex 10 Sheet Cross Cut. It shreds 10 pages at a time along with credit cards and compact discs. Another great shredder I have used was this Staples – Mail Mate. This little thing is a beast and can shred 12 pages at a time but fills quickly. Very compact if you don’t have a lot of space.

Drop If Off At A Business

Staples & Office max offer shredding per pound. Approx. .80 cents per pound. The only issue is that you don’t see it get shredded and for some people that is not good enough. Sometimes they will shred it in front of you if someone is available to do so and the amount of shredding is small enough.

Drop It Off At A Shredding Event

Most events have a small fee of $10 a box, but you have to wait until the event comes around every year while your shredding sits around.

Hire A Pickup Service

The average price of a home visit is $100. Some companies can shred it in front of you or some take it away and shred it later.

Wrap Christmas Gifts In Minutes!

In Newsletters on December 5, 2014 at 12:04 am

I purchased a few Christmas gifts this week and due to my limited living space my wrapping paper station is in an under-bed storage bin. I really like where it is because when I slide it out I have the whole floor or bed as a work station. Unless of course, I want to go into another room to watch TV while I wrap, I can take it anywhere. Also, I don’t have to go into Christmas decorations to pull it out. As I easily slid it out, I was very happy to see that last year I had included everything I needed in order to get my presents wrapped quickly.

Horizontal Storage:

In my under-bed bin I have a ziplock bag of scissors, tape and gift tags. Also in this same bin I have mailing envelopes, tissue paper, gift bags, ribbon and a few small boxes for shipping. Bed Bath and Beyond has a great container that offers the same setup but, has pockets to help you sort the smaller items. Horizontal Storage Bin.

Vertical Storage:

You can setup a wrapping station similar to one like mine. If you don’t have horizontal space, go with wrapping paper storage containers or simply a smaller garbage can. To be honest, I find that many of those specific wrapping paper container lids never work or fit after you load different length wrapping paper rolls. If you want to give this storage container a try at least get one with storage in the lid for tape and scissors. Vertical Storage


If you have the space, such as a craft room or spare room, try a wrapping paper station cart. A client of mine purchased one and really loves it. It’s setup year round and ready to go at any moment. Wrapping Paper Carts

Avoiding Mis-Matched Containers

In Newsletters on October 9, 2014 at 3:29 pm

Have you ever needed to buy more of a specific organizing container and wasn’t sure where to find a match for it? I recently discussed this with a client and decided to look into it and get answers.

Item # : Hopefully your container might just have an item number on it that you can reference online or at the store you purchased it from.

Buy popular brands or lines: I called the company Sterilite and left a message to ask for their opinion. Their response was; just as other companies keep their products new and fresh so do we. However there is always the classic line of containers that stick around because they are popular. Some of the not so popular will come and go. Therefore leaving you with mis-matched organizing tools.

Buy in bulk: If you have the storage space then I would recommend buying a set of multiples in case you decide to add more. It is always helpful to have empty multi-sized containers on hand.

*The Container Store has its own line of containers. This boot box size is one of my favorites especially for children’s memorabilia. Those art projects can be quite large, so this shallow bin tends to be very accommodating. Also is slides under a bed for easy access!