Where do I start?  As a Professional Organiser, that’s a question I hear a lot.  And usually it comes from people who feel out of control, stressed and overwhelmed.  And when they hear the answer there is an audible sigh of relief.  The truth is there’s no one right answer.  It’s simple.  Start anywhere, anytime.  Here are a few suggestions –

• Start big – with the room that bugs you the most.
• Start small – with just one messy drawer.
• Start with your purse or handbag – this is great because you can do it while waiting around.
• Start with one room and a basket – walk around the room collecting anything that doesn’t belong.  When you’ve done that, take the items to their rightful home.
• Start with 5 minutes – then choose whether to go for another 5 minutes.
• Start with the bathroom – it’s small and compact and there’ll be lots you can ditch.  Empty containers and out-of-date products.
• Start with a bookshelf – evaluate what you really want to read again.  Donate books you won’t read again to friends, nursing homes, schools or charity shops.
• Start with your recipe collection – keep the recipes that suit your style and dietary requirements and say goodbye to the rest.
• Start with a stack of magazines in front of the TV – tear out and keep an article only if you need it.  Stories get recycled year after year, styles change.  Ask yourself if you’ll bother rereading those tips if you have to hunt for them.
• Start with someone to help you make decisions – someone who won’t judge you but won’t let you slack off either.

And here are some tips –

• Just start.
• Make an appointment with yourself to tackle your project.
• Don’t get distracted.
• Set a timer and keep going till it rings.
• Keep your goal in mind and stay motivated.
• Play your favourite music.
• Get help when you need it.
• Reward yourself for a job well done.
• Enjoy the space you’ve created.

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