Frequently Asked Questions
Why do you have a separate paper group vs. a home organizing group?
We have separate groups to keep people who are doing the same type of organizing work together, paper with the paper group and home organizing with the home group.
Think about working in a library. Imagine if someone were to get up and start vacuuming or cleaning at the library, it would be very distracting.
What does the process look like?
Each week we come together via zoom with a facilitator (professional organizer) and other members of your group. The organizer asks each person how their week was and what they would like to work on during our time together. The facilitator is available to answer questions and to make sure that individual goals are manageable and obtainable. Each individual is free to mute themselves and start on their task or they may listen to the others.
Approximately 10 minutes before the end of class, we will review everyone’s progress and state goals for the coming week.
What is the client’s role in the process?
To remain curious, to be open to learning, to consider suggestions and guidance, and to do the physical work.
What is the Organizer’s role in the process?
To provide a safe place for each individual in the group, to give direction, to deliver guidance, to explore organizational options, and to offer encouragement. It is also the Organizer’s job to ensure that goals are achievable in the time allotted by helping the individual break larger tasks into smaller doable tasks if needed. Success breeds success! Success is being able to complete your stated tasks and reach your personal goals.
Is there enough one-on-one attention?
Each individual gets personal one-on-one attention at the beginning and at the end of each session. Once everyone has had a chance to update each other at the start of the session, the “work time” begins and individuals may ask the organizer specific questions as they arise.
What about Follow Up?
This group creates accountability that helps individuals follow up and complete tasks. Stating your intention out loud, having dedicated time, and having someone ask you how the session went significantly increases the rate of completion of your tasks.
Can I ask questions?
Yes, during the “work time.”
How does the technology work?
What camera requirements do I need?
You receive a weekly zoom link by email. Simply open the email and click on the link to go directly to the group meeting.
You will need to use a camera on a cell phone, laptop computer, or desktop computer. If needed, a separate camera can be purchased that connects directly to a computer.
What if I fall behind everyone else?
Everyone is working in different ways and on different items so you will NEVER fall behind. Everyone works at their own pace and within their own schedule to complete their own goals.
What can I expect to get accomplished in a month?
There is not a specific “number of papers” that you will get through in a month. Some individuals sort through boxes of paperwork while others may be creating a filing system for their paperwork. Some may be just working on getting their daily incoming papers under control.
At the end of each month, you receive an emailed summary of what your weekly goals were and what you did during class so you can reflect and acknowledge your progress.
What about being with a group of strangers?
Does that make things weird?
An organizing group is structured to be a safe and non-judgmental space for you to work. It can be comforting to know you are not alone as other people in the group may be struggling with the same issues that you are. Since they are strangers, you have no emotional connection with them and the fear of someone close to you seeing you struggle is eliminated. You get to hear others ask questions and then you can implement their ideas into your system.
I worry about other people judging me.
How do I deal with this?
This is normal! For individuals who have heighten anxiety about this, we can start with a one-to-one private meeting. As a Certified Professional Organizer, I have seen all! My passion is to meet people where they are and to motivate them so they can overcome their organizational hurdles. We celebrate your progress and success together. Once individuals feel that their anxiety is decreased, they are more comfortable in group settings.
What are the main differences between group organizing and individual organizing?
Group organizing is like going to a workout class while individual organizing is like having your own personal trainer. The class will give you a good work out and may take care of all your exercise needs but some individuals do better with the individual attention given by a professional trainer. It is a personal decision and solely depends on your needs. Some individuals start with one-to-one sessions then move to a group class. Both options are available to support you.
Do you recommend doing this class with a friend, spouse, or a partner?
There are always exceptions to the rule, but I generally do not recommend it. At times individuals may feel vulnerable. If the friend, spouse or partner does not struggle with the same issues, you may feel defensive and you may not be transparent enough to get the help you need.
What are the benefits of this class/group?
You get to have a Certified Professional Organizer and Certified Coach come along side you and guide you in making a system that is personalized to fit your needs.
You receive gentle accountability, positive support, and unlimited encouragement.
You have someone who gentle reminds you about negative self-talk which can increase self-confidence. It is fascinating to watch the internal mind shifts that take place during this class.
Paper management and organizational skills are not taught in school and seeing adults of all ages struggle with these issues is heartbreaking for me. Financial challenges frequently get in the way of me helping more people. Knowing this, I decided to create group settings and online pre-recorded videos which makes it more affordable to those on tighter budgets.
Is there a link between decluttering and weight loss?
YES! Here is the link to the full AARP article that talks about Peter Walsh’s test panel results:
“It now appears there may be a link between the amount of stuff you own and your body weight.“ Peter Walsh, author of Lose the Clutter, Lose the Weight, tries to get people to lose weight by cleaning house. “We recruited a test panel of 25 participants who had both weight and clutter issues,” he explains. Each was put through a six-week decluttering program. “The results were pretty astounding. Every test panelist lost an average of 10 pounds. And they all declared their homes were far more organized than when they had begun.”
What I Say: When you know what to do with your stuff (where is should go, how to label it, how to create a system, etc), you become more comfortable in editing out the things you no longer need and are no longer serving you. Learning that you have power and control over your items, allows you to value yourself. You are more important than things! This mindset also correlates to food and selfcare. When your environment is uplifting and not depressing, you are naturally more active, tend to eat healthier, and are more welcoming to visitors in your home.
You must be enrolled in or have completed Pruning the Paper to enroll in the Paper Organizing Work Party Group.
Please sign into your account to enroll.