Adjective Challenge 2018!!

I'm not big on New Year resolutions. Don't get me wrong, I love the built-in yearly opportunity to reflect, ponder, wonder, accept, and forgive all that went on during the previous 12 months. I love the ritual of wiping clean and starting anew. I also love giving myself the chance to try, try again. I always felt, though, that resolutions were too confining and they left me feeling more than bit constrained. In the last decade, I realized that what I was really after was not the end-game of a resolution, but the understanding of and goal-setting toward a feeling state. Example - if I am starting the year feeling less than in MY best physical condition, rather than saying "I want to lose 5lbs.," I say, "This year, I want to feel Lean, Strong, and Energized." You might choose something like Flexible, Light, and Consistent. I love how specific I can get. That specificity can then tie directly to action steps to get to that feeling state. And 3 is a great number. 

The best thing about using feeling states, in the form of Adjectives, is that I can then apply it individually to every subsection of my life:
  Primary Friendships

I can get into as many life minutiae as I care to. 

Then I write it all down, post it where necessary, mood board if I want, and refer back to it as often as I need to. It's also a great way to look back and assess what's changed over the last year.

So, come on and take the Adjective Challenge with me!

Don't Be A Pain In My Stuff

To be honest, I started coaching my organizing clients because I was bored. Not a ringing endorsement, I realize. I love organizing. I love spaces and all their possibilities. All the dreams I ever remember having are ones in which I am moving through, lost in, inspired or terrified by some form of home structure. I love showing others the potential of the space in which they live, work, love, and grow. But I had started to feel ambivalent about showing up to client’s homes to help them clean out their closets for the 3rd and 4th times. Feeling ambivalence about organizing was disturbing for the person who happily spends at least 40% of her daily mental capacity trying to figure out things like how to get 1.5 inches worth of space in a kitchen cupboard so that the new serving tray her mother-in-law gifted her won’t have to sit on the kitchen counter.

I was aware that this feeling of “meh” was no fault of my clients. My clients were happy to have a clean closet for 3 months at a time, but if I was having to show up at their homes to re-do the same job that often, I was the one missing something in the process.

I started to study why I loved being organized so much. I began to notice that my outer environment was a direct reflection of my inner environment. I could track, with great precision, what was going on in my head and heart by what I saw happening in my home. I became aware that my relationships inside my home were reflected in how we functioned, moved and lived in our space. Most importantly, I discovered that I was happiest when my home supported the way I like to do things. Perform tasks. After all, 80% of the time we spend in our homes, work environments, hell, in our heads, is about performing a task.

This whole time period coincided, not coincidentally, with practicing a lot of self-coaching to help me live more authentically on a daily basis. I was using tools that helped me identify which thoughts in my head were truly my voice and which might be too-oft repeated phrases from others that I had come to believe were my own. Dismantling the thoughts that weren’t actually mine was really powerful, freeing and lead to a place of more frequent peace.

Free. Peaceful. That’s how I wanted my clients to feel. I didn’t want their space/stuff to cause them pain. Stuff should not have the power to cause pain. But what if the real pain was on the inside and we were just seeing the reflection of it on the outside? No amount of tossing, donating, cleaning or stuffing into new containers was going to get at that pain. My mission changed. Clean the inside first. Clear out all the old, ill-fitting, moth-eaten and endlessly recycled detritus in the head, open the heart to an innate way of doing and help build a lasting and supportive method of living with stuff.

That is why I am an Organizing Coach. Let’s clean out your closet 1 time.

Stay tidy, my friends.

Click below to view my August Special

The Art of the Tiny Tidy

The Tiny Tidy is the perfect method to stay organized and avoid end-of-season chaos when all you want to do is give in to the lazy days of summer.  It appeals to all the types of organizers out there for the few months ahead and can rescue you from the last minute rush to ready yourself and your family for the inevitable beginning of a new school year.

The bones of the method are few and easy to remember. It can be scheduled or spontaneous. It has potential for massive list checking-off and surprising moments of satisfaction. Easy breezy is the goal, just like summer.

 Here’s how it works:

  1. Pick an area/spot no more than 2ft. X 2ft. - It could be a section of a closet, a drawer, 1 cupboard or a refrigerator/garage shelf. Just make sure you keep it’s size small enough to accomplish. You could make a list of things you want to tackle or decide to plunge in as you come across them.
  2. Set a timer for no more than 15 minutes. THIS IS A KEY COMPONENT! No chance for our anti-organizing gremlins to get worked up.

  3. Sort, toss, wipe down, label, stack, fold, file, and bag everything you can in those 15 minutes. If the timer goes off before you are done, no problem. You get a pass! Time to move on with your day. Make a mental note to finish this Tiny Tidy the next time you’re ready for one. If you finish, Yee Haw! Check it off the list, pat yourself on the back, tell your reflection, “You Rock!” and hit that beach.

  4. Don’t forget to throw away any garbage or add to that donation bag as you head out the door.

  5. Repeat the process as often as you can.


Easy Breezy!

This also works when you find yourself faced with a monster clean-out/organizing project that makes you want to take a nap. This method provides real results over time and doesn’t overwhelm. Box by box, shelf by gets done.

As a side note, this is a great end-of-day game to play with kids and all their summer stuff that can be parlayed into the new school year when you want to get backpacks and lunches ready for the next day.

Stay Tidy, my friends.

  peace in the midst of chaos

  peace in the midst of chaos

#HowIWantToFeel2017 – Adjective Challenge

I love adjectives. They can be the perfect-sized bite of the most amazing soul morsel. They are so small that it’s hard to hide behind them. They leave no room to massage story or develop spin. When you find the right adjective it can create a blast of pinpoint-accurate feeling. The wrong one feels like a meh, a wet rag, an echo. It’s the best possible work you can do to join your brain and your body so they can “walk the same walk.”

At the beginning of each New Year, I like to ask myself how I want to feel as I move through the next 12 months. In each area of my life, I choose three perfect-for-me adjectives to keep me motivated in the midst of self-doubt, times of pressure from the outside world, weeks of managing chronic pain or moments of lizard-brain fear.

I’ll be sharing my adjectives with you, this year. I’d love to hear any that may inspire you.

Survive El Nino With Kids in Southern California

So it’s finally here.  All the rain that’s been promised is beginning.  Now how do you get through it without drowning in wet messes, soaked backpacks, mildewed shoes and soggy cars?  First step…water is good.  Let’s all try to keep our sense of humor, drive safely and just add a bit of maintenance to our daily routine.  Next, try some of these:

Just say no to umbrellas at school

Umbrellas can be awkward and a pain to keep track of even for adults.  Keep your kids dry without making them try to remember another item when it’s time to pack up at school.  Hooded ponchos may not be fashion forward, but they provide great rain protection for your child’s head, body and backpack.  Plus, their teacher and librarian won’t have to keep track of all those wet umbrellas.

Ponchos at Amazon

No wet socks

Proper rain boots are the only way to make sure your kids don’t walk around in wet socks all day.  Have you ever seen feet that have spent hours in wet socks?  Eeeewwww.  Just can’t do the boots?  Pack an extra pair of socks in a zip lock bag and put it in their backpack.

Kids Boots At Amazon

Create a Mud Room, Even in the Tiniest Home

For those of you with a mud room, Yay!!  Now you just have to move out all the stuff you’ve been storing in it up until now.  For those of us with typical west coast homes, we have to get a little creative.  My favorite solution involves a boot tray at the front door for shoes and boots and suction hooks in the shower for ponchos, umbrellas and raincoats.

Make sure kids change their pants as soon as they get home, so their wet pant legs don’t get all over the furniture.  Drape the wet clothes over the shower curtain, near (not on) the heater, etc. before putting them in the laundry just in case you don’t do a load for a day or two.  You’ll cut down on mildew that way.

Keep a mop or rag handy to wipe up wet tracking, dripping backpacks, etc. right away.

Boot Trays at Amazon

Suction Hooks at Amazon

Car Maintenance

Car mats can help save your floors from mud.

Oil cloth can be draped over the back seat to protect against wet ponchos and raincoats.

Use the trunk, instead of the back seat, to carry backpacks.  Oil cloth is good for trunks, too.

Keep a rag under the driver seat to mop up after doors are open.  Lay it out over the passenger head rest occasionally, to dry.

O.K.  What are your tips?  Stay safe and dry, dear readers.

Organizing special!

Is Your House in Chaos Before School and at Bedtime? De-stress the mess. Let me observe and help you build routines that run smoothly and without drama.   4-hours of great ideas for organizing your day for $150.00 (25% off!)* *I’m not afraid of working with teens  Call to schedule now 917.628.8999

I Have 2 Coaching Slots Open Starting In September!!


I am excited to announce that I have 2 coaching slots open starting in September!!!

Please consider taking a journey with me to self discovery, gratitude and above all, peace.

If you don’t know what coaching is or can do for you, feel free to take advantage of my free 30 minute consultation.

Rates are great when you purchase a package.

call me or email me: or 917.628.8999

I Know I’m A Luxury, But What Are You?

So here I am, flying down this road called Self-employment at top speed, alternately feeling exhilarated and exhausted.  The road signs take turns being clear and not so much.  My bank account hasn’t been this confused in over 10 years and The Voice aka Lucille Ball is doing her level best to regain her foothold as the gas-pedal-pusher on this ride.  This is not unexpected, but as any new business owner will tell you, being able to reach out to your prospective new clientele in the middle of such a high-speed race is, at best, challenging.  Branding is hard, marketing is too, especially when providing services.  In a recent conversation with a fellow small business owner, she mentioned that she was concerned that her services were viewed as a luxury and, therefore, in this economic climate, seemingly out of reach for the people she would most likely want to target for business.  I immediately got a knot in my stomach, which told me that what she was saying scared me.  If her services are truly luxuries, then what the hell are mine?  I ask people to pay me to clean out their closets, garages, offices and minds.  All things that, when belts are tighter, people generally believe they should be able to do on their own, for free!  Why the hell should they pay me to paw through their belongings and their brains, push around their piles and limiting beliefs, sort their dirty cabinets and their dirty pain?  Why should they want to?  Lucy started running in circles, clutching her red updo and hyperventilating.

It starts with us.  Believing that our service, product, knowledge or idea is a luxury is a dangerous thought for us new business owners.  I knew it even as I was feeling scared during that conversation.  If I believe I’m a luxury, then so will everyone else.  It’s a belief based on some kind of fear.  Fear of failure, fear of success (oh, it does exist), fear of making no money, fear of not doing it right, fear of being too big for your britches.  People can smell fear.  Fear will bring you no clients.  Fear will blind you to clients right in front of you.   Fear will give you no creative ideas.  Fear is Lucy’s favorite breakfast food.

So, why should anyone want to pay me to do what I do?

Because while they can do it, they haven’t and most likely won’t.  They will never be as compassionate toward themselves and their stuff as I will be.  They will not be as likely to see it through to the end without me.  I can help them achieve peace in the middle of chaos and laugh throughout the process.  They need me and don’t know it yet.   I am not a luxury.  I am an undiscovered necessity.

And I am fearless about letting them know.

What did you say?

On this journey to a life at the core of peace (a journey I am thrilled to be on BTW) I have hit a snag. I am prepared to meet my own demons, slay my own dragons and generally stay in my own damn business. But I feel indignation, I am appalled and I am way outside my own damn business. In the name of love I want to take up arms, expose the truth, punish the guilty and venerate those I know to be worthy.  I feel helpless.  People are talkin’ smack about my peeps.  Spreading lies, spinning tales, being completely inauthentic and downright mean.  And in big, monster, public ways.  “Sheening” out all over the place.  Not only are they doing this, but they are also getting recognition and sympathy for it!  I want justice!  I want them exposed for the attention begging, gall inducing, whining,  publicity mongering parasites that they are!

And yet…

If I take up the cause, I would be feeding the monster.  More importantly, I would be too busy fighting and being righteous to be available for my peeps.  My peeps who need a place to feel safe, not judged and loved unconditionally.

Here then, is my only option.  Work on why this causes me pain.  Burn through all the negative thoughts and the lies behind the thoughts.  Burn it away until there is nothing but compassion.  Compassion for myself, my peeps and even the attention begging, gall inducing, whining, publicity mongering parasites (you can see I still have have some work to do).  Here I am of some use.  Here I can open my arms.  And those vertical lines between my eyes are not so prominent either.  Bonus.

No one ever said this was going to be easy.

“Troubled? Then stay with me, for I am not…” – Hafiz