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Couples & Clutter Part II

Let’s look at a real couple with a real clutter conundrum. Claire and Josh. (names & faces have been changed to protect the clutter)


Claire & Josh


Claire describes their clutter problem: Josh doesn’t appreciate my holiday decorations and the time it takes to display it all. I pack it carefully into containers but then there is nowhere to put the tubs because there is no room in the garage. His tools and stuff are a mess! She resented Josh because, “didn’t he see that everything was packed so carefully?”



Josh describes their clutter problem: I started resenting Claire because, she knows that her dad is always giving me tools. That’s why I have so many tools. Didn’t she know that I took all the tools because it was HER father! Her holiday decorations in tubs, bags, or other containers are piled up in closets or the den! She doesn’t put anything away!



Couples & Clutter

The most important problem was lack of communication. They needed a neutral party to evaluate their situation.


They hired a Professional Organizer who helped devise a plan for the garage. The PO nudged them to rethink their mindset of “I” to “we, as a couple can do this clutter cleanup and planning together!”


Problem: Claire and Josh weren’t communicating about their storage problem in the garage. Josh’s father-in-law over time had given him many tools and now he double sets of tools. The result was that Claire had to store holiday decorations in the house.


Compromise/Solutions: Inventory, sort, divide the duplicate set tools, nails etc. Restore storage for holiday decorations in the garage. Complete the task as a couple.

Discuss and talk about how to respond to Claire’s generous father giving them tools etc.


Comment: It seems simple, right, just Inventory, sort, divide, tools, nuts, and this will

make room for seasonal decorations! Done! Not so easy! It takes time and commitment.



After 2 sessions with the Personal Organizer Josh and Claire inventoried, sorted the tools into the two tool chests. They put aside a tool chest for one of their married sons and let it go. The storage racks were cleared for Claire to put her containers back into the garage.

Claire and Josh now could look at this part of the job and smile. It was a job well done. It felt good. They did it together.



As Dana Clark summarized her clutter container theory, “… your house determines what a bedroom is - and no other room should change itself to hold the overflow. So, the office should not become a make-shift closet space…. you can’t bring any more stuff into the house without getting rid of something else currently taking up space. (And that’s Dana Clark’s “the container theory.”)

Are you ready? Both of you? take a chance. Try a Personal Organizer.


SK Out! Have a great week! Be Happy!


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