I don’t post about pretty boxes. I don’t. Did early in my career, haven’t in years. Why? I do not think pretty boxes are the important part of the organizing work. Can those be a reward for the tremendous effort involved in this kind of partnership? OH YEA. Can those be a tool to further my clients’ ambitions? OH YEA. I absolutely, frequently recommend that my clients choose attractive options – as long as those are functional – when they value visual appeal in their environment. Some people couldn’t care less, and that’s OK too. Those other folk might be motivated by saving time lost to looking for things, or eliminating their likelihood of purchasing unnecessary multiples.
I love me a pretty box as much as the next person. I even make ’em on occasion – the photo in this post is an ancient, plain black travel trunk I carted around for years until I upcycled it. What had been quietly mildewing, starting to warp so I couldn’t open it, now holds blankets. I’m not mentioning the trunk to brag. I’m mentioning it because the trunk is a symbol. When my clients do the really hard work, learning how to categorize their items, learning how to let go of items, learning how to trust themselves when they realize “I need wicker baskets and a better calendar to remind myself to look into the baskets once a week to bring the stashed stuff upstairs,” they are going to KNOW they like wood boxes or clear plastic bins or hanging all clothes instead of folding garments in dressers. And they might have more time and space for hobbies, for a new office desk, for cooking healthier, easier meals…
The HARD work – the intense emotional and mental self-examinations that are critical – are not pretty. But always worthwhile.
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