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ClutterClarity can work with you anywhere in the world via phone or Skype coaching, and hands-on in your home in MetroWest Boston, primarily in Acton, Arlington, Bedford, Belmont, Brookline, Cambridge, Carlisle, Concord, Lexington, Lincoln, Littleton, Maynard, Medford, Needham, Newton, Stow, Sudbury, Watertown, Wayland, Wellesley, Weston and Winchester, Massachusetts.

 


 

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Learn what it really takes to make decluttering, organizing, downsizing easy, even enjoyable.

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Paper Clarity: What to Keep, Where, and When to Shred Paper Clarity shows you what to keep, where, and when to shred

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ClutterClarity News: full of original insights, tips, real life stories, giveaways and events for your benefit!

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Recent Successes

Helped client decide how to revise her will before her 80th birthday   Organized senior living apartment, donated truckload of belongings Taught 30 year old time management  and prioritizing skills so she can enjoy her days more Decluttered home, trashed 10 bags of broken toys Shopped for furniture, set up beautiful bedroom Organized office, papers for client’s divorce Facilitated family communications, managed downsize and move, set-up of new apartment for senior couple Decluttered, organized home to make room for 2nd baby.

Wednesday
Dec122018

How Love Creates Clutter - Real-Life Stories

According to Shopaholics Anonymous, there are six types of "shopaholics," a term coined in 1984. 

  1. Compulsive - shop when feeling emotional distress.
  2. Trophy - shop for the perfect item.
  3. Image - shop to be seen as a big spender, often for flashy items.
  4. Bargain - shop for items they don’t need because they are on sale.
  5. Bulimic - shop in a vicious cycle of buying and returning.
  6. Collectors - shop until they own every available option of a set.


Shopping can make a home look hoarded,
but that does not necessarily make the shopper a "hoarder."


Read three Real-Life ClutterClarity Stories of shoppers who buy out of love, yet with guidance, are able to bring their messy, overstuffed homes back into balance.

Loving Mother
My client's wife loved to relax at night shopping online, hunting for the best buy. As the family's primary provider, her habit was attached to her identity: a child who grew up in poverty, now a loving mother with children who didn’t want for anything. Of course, shopping created more financial stress, more need to escape. What started innocently enough became oniomania(coined 1924), obsessive, uncontrollable shopping. Even though the spare bedroom and back porch were hip-deep in clutter, with other rooms in disarray, she thought she had simply fallen behind in housekeeping. Decluttering was only part of the solution. Her husband got a part-time job and began to oversee the budget with his wife, started couples therapy and cut up the credit cards. She replaced her shopping habit with cooking - her other love - to relax at night and save money.


Loving Husband
My client’s husband bought her what shewanted for Christmas - a cobalt blue Le Creuset Dutch Oven. She really loved it, he really loved her, so he bought her more after Christmas. Makes sense, right? He was a collector of fine things with an overstuffed, messy basement. There was no room in the kitchen cabinets for the Le Creuset, even after his wife and I decluttered. The pots sat out on the counter or stove, often in the way. Though annoyed at her husband's shopping habits and the pots, she endured not wanting to offend her husband's love by “getting rid of them." Only when their daughter married years later could she comfortably re-gift them as a wedding present. All out of love.

 

Loving Parents
A much loved home needed decluttering, re-design and organizing. Hiring two movers, we shifted furniture in four rooms for greater function, comfort and beauty. The primary clutter was children's stuff. The parent's love was strewn across two large playrooms, and living rooms shared with the adults. Both parents worked, but the mother felt guilty working, even part-time. Her outdated model of motherhood resulted in impulsive shopping to express her love instead of pride as a woman contributing to the family well-being. We created distinct kid and adult zones, and established new habits to teach the kids that "they weren't done playing until they put their toys back in their homes." Shopping less, and "taking care of our home” became a shared family responsibility to keep the house decluttered and in balance.

 

Wednesday
Dec122018

Replace Presents with Your Presence - Declutter Holiday Shopping

Collectively, we can change the tidal wave of clutter by changing our own shopping habits. Give with deep intention. What you do now will last forever in memory. No waste at all! 

  • Gift your presence. Create an experience to share with someone you love. (See Hopper House Tour below.)
  • Gift your time. Help someone. Offer your skills. 
  • Ask people to donate. Give to your favorite charity. 
  • Donate a tree in someone's name.  Arbor Day Foundation
  • Slow down. Disappear, rest, play with someone you love without more stuff.


Shop In Your Home FIRST
Why wait until you die to give stuff away to the people you love? Jewelry, art, kitchen pots, your grandparents' love letters - something someone has admired or you know they will appreciate. Are you decluttering or downsizing now? Great. Your clutter can be someone else's treasure now. A perfect holiday gift!

  1. Make a list of people to whom you want to give gifts. 
  2. Put on some holiday music. 
  3. Stroll through your home. 
  4. Find things you know a person will really love or appreciate.
Benefits: Save time, money and reduce your holiday stress. Enjoy!
Thursday
Dec062018

Don't Dismay; Shop Differently Today 

Surf the New Wave of Awareness

Black Friday 
Don't get me wrong; I love my stuff, but the tsunami of Black Friday shoppers just staggers me. At the deepest level, I believe it is an unfulfilling attempt for fufillment in a competitive, capitalist society. It needs to be respected. 

Maybe you have heard of FOMO
 - "fear of missing out" - a chronic anxiety in today's culture. What's different now than years past is we compare ourselves to super-rich celebrities on social media instead of "The Joneses" in our own neighborhood. Having less, never to catch up, chronically hungry for more.

Hope is Afloat
We all know that over generations, Americans' shopping habits have unintentionally, even innocently, created a tsunami of clutter. 

What few appreciate is the growing counter-wave of awareness, even inspiration. Perhaps someday this wave will be as large as the one created on Black Friday.

A perfect confluence of economic, environmental, personal and social trends is propelling millions to bravely turn and face the burden and shame of their accumulation. It's an exciting time to be alive!


It's physics. For every action there is
an equal and opposite reaction.


For over 15 years, I've witnessed this counter-wave rise in revolt of too much. I'm frequently in awe of my clients' power to transform their beliefs and turn the tide of clutter in their own homes and lives.

The Gift in Decluttering
Decluttering is not about getting rid of stuff. It is the dynamic opportunity to reflect and redefine our self-worth, and keep what adds real value to our present lives.

Power grows as the piles lessen. A beautiful re-kindling of confidence occurs as clients learn how to trust their decisions about what to keep or let go. Instead of dwelling in their past, lamenting the mess they made, decluttering provides undeniable evidence of their own power to change today, thus create a better future.

Surf the Rising Wave of Awareness
Sometimes things have to get worse before they get better to finally motivate us to do what it takes to get out of our mess. Even in these disturbing times, goodness is happening all around us. Innovation abounds.

The Sharing EconomyRent the Runway and Minimalism are just a few examples of the cultural wave of awareness of the benefits of owning. Millennials, those who watched their baby boomer parents and depression era grandparents struggle under the burden of too much, are living lighter. They are our future. 

Don’t Dismay; Shop Differently Today 
I invite you to ride this wave of holiday shopping anew. Cumulatively, as more individuals buy less, new trends will take hold. Slowly yes, but definitely. 

People are already over-tired, over-spent, and over-stuffed. Most homes (and our planet) are already at capacity. Not sustainable, yet all clutter gets into our homes with permission. 


Women, as the primary shoppers, are in a
unique position to create a better future.


Dive in Now
Lead by example; dare to shop with the intention to slow the tide of clutter in your own home. Your children will thank you, if for no other reason than they won't have to clear out your house in the years ahead.  


Individually and boldly decide to live the change you want to see.


Thursday
Dec062018

Give a Gift of Art and Exploration - Hopper House Tours

Delight your friends and family!
Hopper House Tours Gift Certificates
 
Do you need a gift for people who love Edward Hopper, Cape Cod, nature, art, architecture or history? Of course you do - here's the gift for them!

No one in the whole world can enhance a Hopper tour with personal stories and local history like tour guide, Beth Chapman. Don't take my word for it, read fabulous testimonials here. 

With a photo guidebook of Truro homes and landscapes that Hopper painted in the 1930s-1940s, passengers travel back roads, hidden places and secret pathways in a fabulous two-hour car tour to see how it all looks now.

Buy your gift certificate now!
www.HopperHouseTours.com
$69 per person 
 
You'll receive a unique code on your receipt for each tour purchased, allowing the recipient to reserve a tour on any day and time when a tour is open.

 

Monday
Nov052018

In the News - Preventing Clutter by Sharing Stuff

Thank you Nancy Shohet West for including ClutterClarity in this wonderful article about another innovative way Americans are coming together to share our abundance.

 

“Library of Things is part of the Sharing Economy, a growing trend to counter the cost and consequences of excessive or mindless accumulation that has cluttered homes and polluted our planet. The Library of Things demonstrates that Americans are shifting their deeply held belief of isolation and independence to one of connection and interdependence.”
 -- Laura Moore, ClutterClarity LLC


Need a cake pan? Try the ‘Library of Things’

 
By Nancy Shohet West | GLOBE CORRESPONDENT  OCTOBER 26, 2018

Stopping by the library? No need to limit yourself to books and a DVD or two. While you’re there, consider whether you have any short-term use for a novelty cake pan, a jigsaw puzzle, a food dehydrator, a label maker, a trowel, a guitar, or a telescope.

Books remain at the crux of any public library’s collection, but such institutions are starting to think far outside the box when it comes to patrons’ needs, as demonstrated when the Boston Public Library earlier this month launched an initiative to lend out mobile WiFi hotspots, portable devices that provide Internet access by tracking signals from cell towers.

In the suburbs, library-goers are discovering everything from musical instruments to household tools in newly eclectic collections, which are commonly referred to as a “Library of Things.”

According to Kristi Chadwick of the Massachusetts Library System, a state-supported collaborative that provides services to libraries throughout the state, the concept began decades ago with art prints. “But what it has evolved into is finding ways for libraries to support their communities in ways they did not traditionally do by looking at the needs of the community in areas beyond literacy,” she said.

As many area librarians who oversee Library of Things collections see it, the items essentially fall into two broad categories: items that will be used only rarely, such as a novelty cake pan or a label maker; or try-before-you-buy items that a prospective consumer might want to test-drive before purchasing, such as a video camera or a musical instrument.

Read the entire article here.