Home Organizer
Downsizing Facilitator
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ClutterClarity in May 2019

ClutterClarity in Feb 2019





Wherever You Live...

ClutterClarity can work with you anywhere in the world remotely or 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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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 or donated 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.


Get Clutter-Clear for a Happier New Year

Winter is a perfect time to putter through your clutter. Fifteen minutes a day or two hours a week is good. It's not torture if you pace yourself over time. But you do need to make time to make progress. Why bother, you say?

Make or Save Money. Clearing clutter saves or makes $1000s in found money, selling or returning items, and preventing duplicate spending. It adds up! Too late to return item? Don't like your holiday present? Save money or space, and feel good by gifting it to someone who'll love it.

Feel Better Every Day.  If it makes you feel bad, it's clutter. For example, it was too easy for my client to watch too much TV, which only depressed him and stole his time. TV had become clutter and had to go. After initial 3 days of shock and aimlessness, no TV was a "relief." He instantly had more time for what was important to him: PLEASURE. For him, that meant reading and learning, friends and family. Happy New Year!

Find What You Treasure: You find things you love, decide what to keep, and make room for what you treasure. You don't have to have all the answers before you start. You figure it out as you go. There are things to learn, but persevere. We all need help along the way, especially in the beginning. By starting now, you can replace your clutter with more comfort, control, and clarity in the New Year.

Whether a TV, unwanted gifts or all those papers, making time to clear your clutter is worth it's weight in gold.


Giving to the Next Generation

Instead of waiting till you die to give loved objects to the next generations, give them as holiday gifts this year. Why wait? You get to enjoy the giving and they get to enjoy you!

It's very important, though to first ask if they want what you want to give.

Giving unwanted things just creates another generation of clutter!

If the next generation says, "No, thank-you," don’t take it personally. We all have unique tastes, homes, and interests. You have options:

  • Give it to some other family member or friend who would love it.
  • Donate it and get a tax write-off. Lots of people really need what many of us can afford to give away.
  • Or sell what is unwanted, and put the money to a good use, such as a college fund!

Instead of giving and spending too much on multiple Christmas gifts,  invest in a new experience for your family to enjoy. Spending time with your children is the best gift you can give them. Invest in activities - theater, vacations, museum memberships, day trips - anything that creates a holiday experience that everyone can hold onto forever in their memory.  Share the stories isntead of the stuff, and make that enough. More than enough. It's wonderful.


Stroll Through Your Clutter 

You don’t have to attack your clutter. Life is hard enough.

Instead, just stroll through one area of your home, and pick what you really love and use now, and let the rest go.

"Putter through your clutter" in little bits fifteen minutes a day or a couple of hours a week.

You  may need help with the larger stuff, but there's lots you can do along the way on your own.

Most stuff has obvious answers: keep, toss, shred, donate, , sell – or give away as a gift.

Truth of the matter is that typically only 20% of the stuff is difficult; you know what to do with 80%. People focus on the 20% and abort their effort to declutter. No need to worry. Put the “undecided” stuff aside, and concentrate on clutter that you can clear out. What a relief!

There's alot of confusion about clutter-clearing. How you think about it causes most of the stress, not the actual doing.

By letting go of the old, unused or unloved items (including those gifts that you don't like), you can make room for what you want - more peace of mind, clarity, and enjoyment.


Protecting Your Resources

Sarah felt pulled in too many directions by too many people. 

Explaining, she said, “I impulsively schedule things because it sounds fun or I don’t want to disappoint people, but then I feel so rushed and resentful.”

People didn’t take Sarah’s time away; she gave it away.

After we scheduled her “fixed” time (work and time for her son, for example) and “breathing room” (more time between commitments, time for travel, and time to eat and prepare meals), Sarah was feeling more in control, but there was more to do.

Sarah now needed to learn how to clearly see and protect her unscheduled time.

I asked her to put a box around any unscheduled time in her next two weeks. Instead of just seeing a blur of appointments, she could now literally quickly see blocks of “open” time. There weren’t many.

Instead of thinking of it as managing your time, think of it as protecting your resources.

Just like the earth, you have limited resources. It wrecks havoc if you don’t respect these limits. Before you say “yes” to others, ask yourself whether you really have the resources to give.

I continued, “Sarah, just because there’s an opening in your schedule, doesn’t mean it is available. You’re tired and need to replenish your energy, even if it’s only 15 minutes a day. If you don’t, you will continue to feel pulled.

Instead of resenting others, recognize that it’s up to you to protect your resources.

To prevent impulsive scheduling, respond to requests by saying, ‘That sounds good, but I need to look at my calendar and get back to you.’ This gives you the time and perspective to choose well.”

“But how do I say ‘no’?” Sarah worried.

 “You don’t say ‘no,’ I explained, "you respectfully say, ‘Thank you.” Continue by saying, ‘I would love to, but I’m really trying to balance my days and can’t add anything more right now.’

They may not like your answer, but they will admire your effort.

If you protect your resources now, you’ll soon feel better, and have more to give away in the future - if you choose.


Separating from Divorce Clutter 

It was hard for Sharon to walk into her office. She felt completely overwhelmed by "tons of horrible papers." 

The papers represented a "horrible" divorce, which was largely over, yet burdened her still.

Before we started organizing, we needed to get some distance between the divorce and the papers, and filing. Her past had to be put in it's proper place. 

  After all, she wanted to get on with her life.

Sometimes you don't have to go through your past to get to your present, especially if it feels overwhelming to do so. First things first.

Coaching her over the phone, Sharon boxed, labeled and taped the divorce papers shut. Fourteen (14!) boxes went down to the basement, under the staircase! She even put stuff in front of them, making them thoroughly out of sight. 

Only half a box of divorce papers remained in her office, representing stuff she was still working out. What a difference! She no longer had to climb through her clutter (divorce, papers and past) to get to her present life.

Walking back into her office, Sharon told me she felt stronger, safer, calmer... more in control. It was still a mess, but organizing wasn't the problem.  She could go through the "horrible papers" in the basement when she felt better, if she wished.

Relieved that her time would no longer be "stolen by the divorce," she was now free to start organizing ing her office. Instead of dreading it, Sharon was surprised to find herself "looking forward to it." Imagine that!