I was totally overwhelmed and didn't know where to start. This household was crazy. Now I can't believe the progress I have made. The basement is done, and that has freed up energy in the rest of the house!
Margaret was a new mom and had just moved in to her partner’s home a year ago. With a sudden influx of baby items, heirloom furniture items from her family coming in and her partner’s packrat tendencies, she felt lost in her own home. She was exhausted, unsettled, and overwhelmed.
She wanted to have a sense of place in her home. The goal for the basement? A space that would support her and her family in their activities – camping, biking, and home repair. Margaret also wanted her house to support her growing toddler. The basement needed a system – a spot for stuff to grow into, a place for outgrown items to be given away, and a mechanism for periodically moving things out. Margaret worked with Stephanie once per week for three months to complete her goal of clearing the basement.
- As a first step, Margaret and Stephanie set up a “mom center” in the kitchen where she had everything she needed to parent her son and manage her home and life. It had all of the paperwork, supplies, and tools that she needed at arm’s reach.
- The basement was purged with multiple trips to donation drop-off.
- She took shelving from elsewhere in her home and re-purposed it in the basement. In so doing, she took advantage of a fundamental principle of organizing – going vertical!
- Margaret became aware that she needed to learn better communication techniques to let her partner know how his mess made her feel.
- Now, her home is a place where she can “recharge her batteries,” and she feels more serene and peaceful.