Relationship Versus Clutter: How a Professional Organiser Can Help Heal

Relationship Versus Clutter: How a Professional Organiser Can Help Heal

In recent years, I have had the opportunity to work with a growing number of couples, which I absolutely love to do!

There seems to be a growing number of men who are willing to participate in dealing with the clutter in the family home. This is a shift that has taken some time (I think it is spurred on by more men working from home over COVID). I feel like couples are starting to see that clutter and disorganization are affecting their relationship.

In my early years of operating GYO, husbands or men-of-the-home were either completely dismissive or even openly hostile to the work of Organising. I recall several occasions where men openly advised me that Professional Organsiing was a waste of their money but that they permitted their wife to undertake sessions to “keep her happy” (in many homes, the final bastions of clutter were their wardrobe and shed!). In fact, in one unfortunate situation, the husband only relented as the wife had been diagnosed with cancer (it was also her birthday present!).

That seems to be changing!

Over the past few years, I have found that more men are willingly engaging in conversations about their homes and their relationship with their ‘stuff’. They are (often for the first time) willing to look at the space around them and are beginning to consider how ‘stuff’ is affecting their lives and the lives of their families.

As an organiser, this is most excellent for my work. I am able to work with clients to declutter EVERY wardrobe, kitchen, garage, etc. However, working with two people – or clients – does mean there is inevitable complexity.

If only they’d just DEAL with it!

Marriages and long-term relationships always involve narratives. Conversations, beliefs, and themes around how each individuals deal with their ‘stuff’ always pre-dates the arrival of the professional organiser. One of the complexities lies in navigating those existing narratives and working through them respectfully and professionally (like therapy!).

Sometimes, there is a story or narrative about the other party that is not accurate. Blame is being apportioned to one party, which often makes them resistant and unwilling to want to engage in decluttering or organising. They may believe that a professional organiser will simply echo the false narrative and, understandably, they don’t want to hear it in stereo!

Natalie and Bobby
Taking a break with Bobby (the worlds biggest sook).

The Good News Is…

I am not in your home to take sides. Because I am not part of the existing narrative (or relationship), I will work calmly, fairly, and professionally to find solutions that work for everyone.

My goal, as a professional Organiser, is for everyone in the home to be able to participate in maintaining a neat and tidy home. It’s my priority for everyone to be happy with the result (and they usually are!).

At the end of the day, it is a wonderful feeling to see couples come together during the decluttering journey.

I usually find that the process of decluttering opens up wider conversations between couples, which often sees old narratives or pain points resolved (or looked at from a new perspective). By the end of the process, it is always clear that we’ve been able to flush away some misconceptions and, possibly, added a bit of empathy, laying the groundwork for future harmony in the home.

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