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Calm Sea

Creating calm out of chaos-declutter your stress away.

Does this scenario sound familiar: I know I have that receipt for the (list item here) I need to return. Where did I put it?

Or this one: I know that sweater is in my closet somewhere or maybe I stuffed it in a drawer. I really need to find it to wear to this event.

Or this: I am running out of room in my cabinets and have no place to put the new (add item here) I bought. And I can never find the lids to the containers for leftovers.

I could go on and on but I'm sure you know what I mean. As a professional occupied home stager, I know a little bit about decluttering. I never go to a stage and start ordering a homeowner to just throw it away. After accessing the home, I ask the homeowner why they are holding on to things that are taking up space and causing them stress. The answers are never what you think on the surface. People hold onto things for a variety of reasons, like maybe this is from a time in their life when they felt important in a specific role, or it reminds them of their mother even though it is not remotely close to their style. They bought it for a specific purpose, but it was never quite right, and they don't want to waste the money. Or their kids made it, won it, loved it at some time in their life and they may want it for their children. The reasons are endless, but the feelings are the same. Being surrounded by clutter is stressful.

How to move past the "sentimental" value and create a calmer space? That's the real trick. I know because I've done it. And I also know what it feels like on the other side, not wasting time looking for the thing that could be anywhere or having cabinets or closets too stuffed to find anything. For me, when I start a project, I concentrate on one area at a time, so I don't overwhelm a homeowner. I have to remove everything from the space in order to clean and see what is actually in there. It is always so much more that they think will be there. I make sure I have a box for donations, a keep box, a recycle box and a trash bag for things that need to be trashed. I talk with the homeowner about why they are holding onto things that no longer serve a purpose and redirect them to how they can be better served elsewhere. As we go through the process, I find it gets easier when they are able to pay it forward and repurpose their things. And as I begin to replace items in a more cohesive way, that creates a more visually appealing space devoid of the packed in clutter, I watch them literally start to calm down.

Decluttering is just as much about decluttering your own thinking as much as it is about actually decluttering your space. My job is to arrange their space in an appealing way while finding a system that functions for them making it realistic to maintain. It is not always about looking perfect or having an aesthetic for photos, but actually

functioning for the homeowner and giving them a sense of calm in their home.

Whether you are getting ready to sell your home or you just want to love your home again, a thorough decluttering and reorganizing will help you find harmony in your space. There is no better time to start than today! If you live in the Bradenton/Sarasota area and need help with your chaos, just give us a call at 941.877.0234. We'll be there for you.

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