There are several national organizing holidays in September that are dedicated to getting your time, space, and life in order. One of these holiday’s includes ‘National Women’s Friendship Month’.
Do you have a close woman friend who needs some support getting decluttered and organized? You needn’t be an expert to help her; you just need to bring an open mind and heart, objectivity and no judgements. Your offer can be a wonderful gesture of caring, an intimate experience, and it can actually be fun for both of you!
First ask your friend if she would like your help getting organized. If she accepts your assistance, pick a day and time to do so, and plan to work together for up to 3 hours. More than this amount of time can be somewhat overwhelming for her (and, possibly for you).
Both of you should gather some empty boxes, plastic bags, grocery bags, and/or covered plastic containers to sort items into. Do not go out and buy extra storage items as you won’t know how much your friend will be keeping. Label each bag/container individually; give away/donate, throw away, recycle, shred, undecided, and new location in home.
As your friend views each item, ask her these ten questions to help her decide what to keep, and what to let go of:
1. Do you use this item regularly?
2. If not, do you love the item?
3. Are you keeping this because you think you should love it?
4. Do you feel obligated to hold on to it?
5. If you let go of it, will it really hurt someone else feelings?
6. Are you holding on to this item because someday you will repair it?
7. Are you saving this ‘just in case’ you may need or use it some day?
8. Do you have extras (you never use) of the same thing?
9. Can you use another item that will work just as well?
10.Can you store something more useful in this space?
If, when answering these questions your friend found that she did not like, will never use, will never repair, or would feel guilty letting go of something, she will realize that the item doesn’t mean that much to her. And, that it’s time to choose what to do with it. Once the items have been delegated to their appropriate storage receptacles, you can both decide how to distribute them; be it a local charity, to the trash or recycle bin, or a more appropriate location in the home.
Be sure to take a lunch break, a tea/coffee and cookie break, or a short walk outside to alleviate any stress or negative emotions your friend may feel. Talk with her about these feelings, and offer her your understanding. Or, hopefully, you will be enjoying accomplishing this goal together that the time will fly. You may find that you and your friend feel much closer by sharing this activity.
If you’ve any questions about the process of helping your woman friend, please get in touch with me!
And, If you live in the Boston area, and would like a FREE 1/2 hour telephone consultation to discuss your clutter issues, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org