Clutter Coaches Need Help Decluttering, too

It looks great NOW, but it was a huge mess for nearly a year. Because it was a reflection of what was happening within me.

A year ago in September, I left my former husband and moved into a very small, older apartment with my adult son. Things had been going downhill for a long time and I needed to leave to find my peace of mind and be myself again.

Over the course of the past year, I was on an emotional roller coaster as we went through the divorce process. I didn’t want to go back, but I had to look at all the aspects of our relationship and mourn the loss of what I thought we had, but didn’t. I had to rediscover who I was and how I wanted to live going forward. I was able to show up for my clients, but when I got home, I often felt lethargic and unmotivated.

To add to the stress, the apartment we were living in was in an old building with steam heat and window air conditioners. We had no control over the heat, so it was often too cold or too hot and there were many days when we didn’t do much except huddle under blankets or sit in front of the a/c. It was also much, much smaller than my previous home, so there wasn’t room for all our stuff, even though I’d left so much behind. Everything that we didn’t have room for elsewhere went into that closet. For a long time, I didn’t have funds rent a storage unit or even to buy storage containers, so all the things were just jumbled together on the shelves. Bottles of shampoo or bathroom cleaner would tip over as I tried to reach behind them to get to something else. Things started to pile up in a heap in the corners so that you couldn’t even see the floor.
Finally, a few weeks ago, I felt something shift internally. I was ready to focus on my surroundings and get them back into a state of order. But every time I looked at that closet and saw the huge mess it had become, I felt overwhelmed and I couldn’t bring myself to start.

As a clutter coach, I knew I needed to ask for help. I hired a friend who has a service helping people with projects around their home. The first day, we hauled everything out and deep cleaned. Then over the course of the next week, I decluttered and bought storage containers. The following week, she came back and we sorted through everything – the plastic bags full of cords and electrical equipment, the office supplies, the tools, the toiletries, the cleaning supplies, and organized them in the containers on the shelves. Now I just pull out the appropriate bin to get what I need. I can see the floor. The space that we created makes me smile when I open the door. 
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the idea of decluttering your home, or even just a drawer or closet, don’t feel embarrassed to reach out for help. We all need a little support sometimes. Everyone thinks that other people have it all together, but no one has a perfect life. Take that first step. Reach out. Change your home and change your life.
September 2022