Discovering space you never knew you had.
News from A Spacious Place
August 2010
Have you ever been hesitant to confront disorganization in your home or office?  What about the feeling you get when you "have" to hire a professional to help you?  Sometimes we feel guilty, even ashamed.  Lisa Wessan chimes in to give us her strategy for helping others let go of their negative emotions.

S.H.A.M.E=Should Have Already Mastered Everything

 By Lisa Wessan, aka Professional Shamebuster SM
As a geriatric social worker, I have worked with many clients and their loved ones who struggle with clutter or have Compulsive Hoarding Syndrome (CHS).  As you may already know, this is a complex issue and only a multi-modal treatment plan can be effective. 

To defrost the emotions of grief and shame that permeate most average clutterers and CHS patients, I have had great success working with them in support groups. In groups, there is an amplified power for releasing the shame burden amongst fellow sufferers.  The feeling of "we are all in the same boat" diminishes the acute anguish of being alone with this challenge.  In a group, we can laugh at the absurdity and oddness of our situation; alone, we often beat ourselves up for not being able to move anything. Together, we can face it, trace it, erase it, and then let go of the stuff.

As a Professional Shamebuster SM, let me briefly describe my definition of shame...S.H.A.M.E. stands for Should Have Already Mastered Everything.  Nay, Nay, I say!  Even if you are in your golden years, who says you should be an expert on this process of letting go?  Dear one, decluttering is a lifelong journey, often a spiritual journey, and it begins NOW.  What's important is to note your progress, not aim for perfection.  

Slowly, slowly, as people release their shame and guilt, they find they have more energy and are able to focus better on the clutter at hand.  They can ask for help, work with a Clutter Buddy, and prepare to allow a professional organizer to come in and ramp up the process. 
Copyright 2010 by Lisa Wessan. All rights reserved.
Reprints available with permission.

Lisa Wessan, MSW, LCSW
Author, Counselor, Seminar Leader
Tel:  (978) 455-0660,

Organizing Product(s) of the Month!

Conquering Chronic Disorganization: Second Edition
By Judith Kolberg
Chronic disorganization is disorganization that undermines a person's quality of life and recurs despite traditional self-help efforts. Conquering Chronic Disorganization is filled with real-life stories of people who used simple, innovative and fun organizing methods proven in the field to end clutter, mismanaged time and paper pile-ups in the home or office. Featured Book of the Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health.  Buy it today at Amazon.Com.
Buried in Treasures: Help for Compulsive Acquiring, Saving and Hoarding
By David Tolin, Randy Frost and Gail Steketee
Buried in Treasures outlines a scientifically-based and effective program for helping compulsive hoarders dig their way out of the clutter and chaos of their homes.

Discover the reasons for your problems with acquiring, saving, and hoarding, and learn new ways of thinking about your possessions so you can accurately identify those things you really need and those you can do without. Learn to recognize the "bad guys" that maintain your hoarding behavior and meet the "good guys" who will motivate you and put you on the path to change.  Buy it today at Amazon.Com.

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Rebecca Osborne
Enjoy the rest of Summer!
Rebecca Osborne
A Spacious Place
In This Issue
Organzing Product(s) of the Month!
ASP Blog and Facebook
Referral Program
Professional Affiliations
Quick Tip
Paper Clips
If you hired a Professional Organizer to assist you, do not clean up before she arrives!  In order to accurately see the situation you are
facing, we POs must observe the space and how you live within it everyday. 

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Did you know...
Think about it
"Some people look at a shelf stacked with coffee mugs and see only mugs. But people with serious disorganization problems might see each one as a unique item - a souvenir from Yellowstone or a treasured gift from Grandma."
Lynne Johnson, Former President, National Study Group on Chronic Disorganization.

Spread the word with ASP's Referral Program!

Who do you know that would like to get their home or office organized?  Please keep my services in mind for friends and family and share the benefits of productivity and calm environments with those you know.
If a referral you send my way books a session, you receive an hour of organizing, FREE!  Be sure to have your friends say you sent them.
You can have them contact me or use the Send to a Friend link at the bottom of this email.  The valuable referrals of my clients are the best way to share the gift of organized surroundings with others.

Professional Affiliations

 The National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO)  
NAPO-NE Secretary, Board of Directors
Wachusett Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors