When my brother was studying Environmental Science in the 1980s, most people hadn’t heard of the subject. So, when asked at parties what he was studying, he used to say it was a branch of geography. The result was, that instead of being asked “What’s that?!”, he got asked “What’s the capital of…?”

So he made a point of learning the capitals of all the countries of the world.

When I tell people I’ve got a Psychology degree, they say “Ooh, better watch what I say around you! Bet you’ve psychoanalysed me already. I’m mad, I am!”

When my Mum tells people she used to teach Maths, they say “Wow, you must be really clever!” (She is, of course. Hello Mum!)

Most people have never met a Decluttering Coach. So when I tell people what I do, their responses reveal a number of misconceptions.

Let me dispel them for you now…

So is your home really minimalist then?

No. My home’s tidy. But I like what I use regularly to be easily accessible on worksurfaces.

It’s about what works for you. If you like minimalist, go for it. I don’t.

You’re not coming in my house! You’d make me throw all my stuff away.

I would never tell you what you ‘should’ get rid of. I can’t know what items are important to you. Only you know that. What I can do is train and support you to work out what you truly love and need, find the most eco-friendly ways to move on what you can live without, and organise your home or office so that it supports you to live the life you want to live.

So you go into people’s homes, do you?

Well yes, I do. But I also support people remotely. As well as providing on-site decluttering and organising support, I run a ten-module programme that takes you through exercises to help you work out why you personally have clutter, helps you define your goals for when you’re clutter-free, trains you in my quick and easy decluttering process, helps you declutter challenging types of clutter (sentimental items, clothes, books, paperwork, the clutter of people you live with…), and shows you how to stop clutter creeping back.

Are you wondering if it’s possible to help someone declutter without going to their home or office? You get telephone coaching, both one-on-one during your clutter-clearing sessions, and in groups. You get video coaching, audio coaching and real-life stories to inspire you. And it works.

This week, after chipping away at it week by week, the decluttering just seems to be taking off by itself and I’m feeling genuinely motivated. (Ms B in week 7)

Since undertaking Rachel’s Green and Tidy declutter programme [Clear Your Clutter, Stay Clutter-Free and Live the Life You Want], I have been engergised about the thorough way I have approached my nearest and dearest possessions. My wonderful life’s gatherings.

 How much better do I feel? I am enthused again, making schedules, doing my actions, getting fantastic & nurturing support, reducing my clutter and organising my lovely new home.

Thank you Rachel. The programme is clear, supportive and cleverly put together. I have just completed the paper clutter module and feel so much better about how to tackle incoming, ongoing piles of paperwork. (SEC)

It means I can help you wherever you are in the world. And, if you’re feeling self-conscious about even letting a Professional Organiser see your home, you don’t have to!

My friend/Mum/Dad/etc really needs you

I bet you know at least one person who struggles to manage their stuff. Even if that person’s you, I bet you know at least one other. We all do.

Up to one in 20 of the population suffers from Hoarding Disorder and, according to the National Declutter Week survey I helped run recently, four out of five people think they have too much stuff.

When someone tells me they know someone who ‘needs’ me, I ask “Are they unhappy about their home?”  Often the person I’m speaking with says “No, I don’t think they’re bothered”.

In which case, I say “So long as they’re happy with it, that’s OK, isn’t it?”

I don’t ask “What do you get out of judging them?” though I do wonder!

Of course, if they say that their friend or relative is unhappy with their stuff, I ask them to pass on my details. So long as the person seeks my help themselves, I’m delighted to work with them.

Do you work with people like the ones on the telly?

Sometimes. And sometimes I work with people who’ve just got temporarily into a mess. Or they’re moving house and want to get rid of stuff before they move. Or they want to declutter their loft so they can insulate it.

We’re all somewhere on the spectrum of clutter and you don’t have to be a hoarder to benefit from the support of a Professional Organiser and Decluttering Coach.

That’d never work for me. I’m creative/artistic and I need my stuff about.

See minimalism. 🙂 Look, it’s about what works for you. If it helps your creative process to have some part-finished projects in sight and the materials you might use readily to hand, set your workspace up that way. But, if you’re so overwhelmed by the clutter in your studio that you haven’t got either the mental or the physical space to create, I can help.

I’d be embarassed to let you see my home

There’s no need to be. I’m not judgemental about other people’s homes. What’s important is that your home works for you (which includes it working for the people you care about), not that it conforms to anyone else’s idea of an ideal home. I work with people at a variety of places on the spectrum of clutter so the chances are that, even if your stuff’s got severely out of control, I’ve seen it all before.

And, if you can’t bear even to let a Decluttering Coach/Professional Organiser see the state of your home, check out my distance learning programme.

What’s the capital of Djibouti?

Oh, OK, I don’t get asked this. But, in case you do…it’s Djibouti City. Now lie back on that couch and tell me about your childhood.

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