Spring newsletter: APDO in action and the news

APDO logo 2016
Welcome to the APDO spring newsletter. This time of year is always a busy one for our members but there’s lots happening inside our organisation too, including our new logo which will soon replace the old pink and purple branding on all our communications.  Read on for more APDO news, Isi Dixon’s latest decluttering tips, and our regional focus on members in the East of England.

Clare Parrack, Newsletter Editor

More training opportunities – join our growing industry

After great feedback on APDO’s first Introduction to Professional Organising training we are repeating these one-day courses on Thursday May 19 in London and Wednesday June 8 in Manchester.

These courses give a great overview of what working as a professional organiser is really like, so if you or anyone you know is looking for a new career direction, why not take the first step to joining our growing industry? Read more about our courses here. We are looking forward to launching more advanced training later in the year.

We also can’t wait to share our new-look APDO website with you – it’s just getting the finishing touches and will be unveiled very soon.

Conference, sharing expertise and news – there’s lots going on!

Grand Designs Live Ask An Expert Click on the image for more on the APDO members providing expert advice at Grand Designs Live

Our annual conference last month was a fantastic event which not only attracted a world-class speaker, Carl Honore, global ambassador for the Slow Movement but  proved our growing reputation as the voice of the UK decluttering and organising industry with coverage by Reuters and delegates . including researchers for a new TV show and a university academic investigating the psychology of clutter. Read more about our conference here.

Also in March APDO joined forces with Money Magpie to support National Clear Your Clutter Day. Members featured in regional events and on videos with Money Magpie and Clear Your Clutter Day founder Jasmine Birtles, and we contributed a guest blog to highlight how we can help.

This spring Amanda Manson (Orderly Office and Home, Cheshire) shared her tips on The Joy of Storage at the IKEA in-store Ideas Festival and Juliet Landau-Pope ( JLP Coach, London) has been one of the leaders on a Guardian Masterclass entitled Lifehacks: How to lead a happier, healthier life.

Our members will also be sharing their expertise in these upcoming events in May:
Juliet Landau-Pope is giving a seminar called Declutter Your Diary: a new approach to time management at The Office Show at Excel London on May 12 and at Grand Designs Live (April 30-May 8), also at Excel London,  Isabelle Lamy (Idea For Your Space), Sarah Macnaught (Right-Size) and Sally Howells (Declutter Me) will be giving free consultations on the Ask An Expert stand.

More media articles and TV clips featuring our members can be  found on our brand-new APDO In The News page on Pinterest.

Pinterest Click on the Pinterest logo for ADPO media coverage

Latest APDO Blogs

Spring-clean your snaps into an organised collection – how to categorise your digital photographs

Joining forces for Clear Your Clutter Day – more on our link-up with Jasmine Birtles’ Money Magpie

Powerful lessons on letting go and the habit of hurry  – APDO Conference report 2016

Spring into Action to Sort Your Clothes Out – tips to organise your wardrobe in time for spring

Decluttering sentimental items – letting go without losing precious memories

Decluttering Sentimental Items
There are many reasons why clutter accumulates in our homes, but one of the most common reasons is that we want to preserve memories. We keep our children’s artwork, our grandparents’ furniture or china, love letters, birthday or anniversary cards, clothes that spark memories of special occasions – whether they still fit or not – and much, much more.

“But how could I ever get rid of this? It reminds me of …” is one of the most commonly uttered phrases when we start to go through these items, trying to clear the clutter.

Just because you decide to reduce your clutter doesn’t mean that you have to get rid of everything, all at once, with nothing but the memories in your head left over. Here are some tips to deal with sentimental items that have taken over your home.

If you are keeping a ton of a loved one’s mementos stashed in boxes in your garage or your attic why not try to simplify and keep a few choice items, nicely displayed in a prime position in your home instead of keeping boxes and boxes of items you never look at. This way you have some beautiful reminders of your loved one that you treasure, while the rest (that you never looked at anyway) can be either recycled or given to charity.

When dealing with children’s artwork take pictures of them. If the pieces were created recently, let your child hold them while you take the picture so you can even remember more of the context of the artwork, i.e. what your child looked like at the age the item was created. You can create photo books or collages that show your child’s progression through the ages, rather than having a pile of paper and cardboard creations in a box that no-one looks at.

If you have lots of little items with lots of different meanings create a memory box. Choose a good quality container and make sure you label each item. If you can’t remember why you kept something, it’s probably time to let it go. And once the box is full, that’s it. You can only add an item if you get rid of another. This way you make sure you only keep your most treasured items.

If you have to go through the possessions of a recently departed loved one or even decide what to do with the items your children left behind after they leave home for good it can be a good idea to box them up and store them somewhere out of the way for about six months.

It will be less painful to go through the items after some time has passed and your decisions what to keep will be more rational. If there are things that you definitely miss looking at during that time, keep those and get rid of the rest. Sort through the boxes and only keep the most meaningful items. This also means you can display these things in your home.

If you can’t face going through all of your sentimental clutter in one fell swoop take baby steps. Start with an item you have wanted to get rid of for a while, then dispose of a few items each day until you feel more confident to tackle more at a time. Remember that possessions are not people and just because you dispose of some items doesn’t mean you are getting rid of the memories which will always remain.

If you want professional help with your decluttering efforts, why not get in touch with a local Professional Organiser for some hands on help. Here at APDO, this is exactly what we can help with, we bring you, the client, together with Professional Organisers and Declutterers in your area. Click here to find an organiser near you.

Organising Quick Tip: Write it down!

Whatever you need to remember, write it down. It doesn’t matter whether it’s on paper or on a digital device but our brains are probably the worst place to keep things we want to remember.

If you need to make an appointment for your car’s MOT your brain will probably remind you in the middle of a business meeting or while you’re at the cinema. If you run out of batteries, you will only remember when you are trying to use an appliance that has run out of batteries. Your mind will remember them when you can’t do anything about these things.

If you have a trusted list, you can check who you need to call when you have a few spare minutes or what you need to buy when you’re at the shops. Writing basic things such as to-do items down also keeps your head free for more creative and important things.
Isi Dixon

Regional Focus

In this issue we find out a little more about the services offered by some of our members based in the East of England.

Starfish Organisers
Starfish Personal Organisers has been set up with the simple idea of helping people.  Whether in business or at home, my aim is to make people’s lives easier, saving them time and or money and leaving them happier.  From paperwork filing and form filling to items that are used day to day to things which have been around for years I work with clients to organise them. As the Starfish story by Loren Eiseley tells us: “I made a difference to that one”…
Sarah Boxall

Tidy Places
My name is Jenny Weston and I launched Tidy Places just over a year ago as a result of my passion for turning houses into homes. I have over 20 years’ business experience within the Cambridgeshire and Huntingdon area. This linked with my practical experience of improving homes including within the rental market means I bring many skills to working with clients.
Tidy Places specialises in three main areas: decluttering and revitalising, house moves and room makeovers. To understand my client needs I offer up to an hour free consultation, either in person or by phone, depending on location.

Unclutter Your Life
I am passionate about empowering you to live more and own less. My approach to Unclutter Your Life will enable you to embrace all aspects of your existence to appreciate not just the visual space that you will gain but the emotional space to approach new opportunities.
I help people to unclutter their lives, it usually starts at home and is a 1:1 service. Most often it begins with one room at a time and evolves on-site.  The process of minimising and eliminating clutter is a hugely personal experience. My experience in minimising is based on simple principles and methods that work.
Julieanne Steel

Working Order
Cassie Tillett has been helping her clients to find clarity for nearly two decades. Proud to be one of the founder members of APDO way back in 2004, she’s never stopped learning, either from her clients or her colleagues. Always delighted to be presented with a new challenge, whether in the home, in the office or on the computer, Cassie is happy to guide, inspire, motivate and help clients throughout East Anglia, and especially in her beloved Norfolk.

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