Good Stuff

Organised Reading

Was getting yourself organised part of your New Years Resolutions?
Has that ‘intention’ hit a slump?
Here are a few inspiring and motivating books for you.

As a professional organiser I realise that when it comes to de-cluttering and organising, some people benefit more from ‘hand’s on’ help with someone by their side, however, for those who just need a bit of encouragement or some ideas on how to get started and keep committed I thought I’d share with you a few books by some of my favourite authors.

House Works – Cut the clutter, speed your cleaning & calm the chaos:
~ Cynthia Townley Ewer

I love the way Cynthia has approached this book, in particular the way she has organised it into common sense sections that give real flow on home management giving the big picture. In particular the relationship with how disorganisation can affect basic things like cleaning and how being organised can cut cleaning time in half. With inspiring pictures, it is written in a conversational style that is relatable and highlights key points in coloured boxes for quick reference. Three key sections are “About The House” (an over-view dealing with problems of clutter, disorder and dirt). She then moves onto “Housekeeping Skill Sets” (the ‘how to’ section), and the last section looks at the “Cycles of an Organized Home” (maintenance). She also includes many resources, planners, forms and lists for use. Dorling Kindersley Books available through

Sorted! The ultimate guide to organising your life – once and for all:
~ Lissanne Oliver

This tiny little book, which debuted in 2007 is jam packet with straight forward common sense solutions from Australia’s foremost professional organiser who I will continue to have much respect for. The beauty of this book is in it’s format. It adopts a ‘recipe’ approach to problem solving where each area for organisation comes complete with a list of what you will need for the task; what method is being employed and finishes off with useful tips. Target areas for tackling include, (but are not limited to) work; paper; on the go and living. These chapters are preceded with information on truths and techniques and the ideologies behind why. The size of the book is very sensible and manageable and ends with lists of resources and web-links relevant for an Australian audience. It’s also worth mentioning that Lissanne has since created a set of organising comics aimed at kids and teens which are available through her website. Current titles include: Liam Runs Late; Stef and her Stuff; Lola Loses It and Catherine Catching Up. Hardie Grant Books through Sorted also available through and as a Kindle book

SHED Your Stuff, Change Your Life – A Four Step Guide to Getting Unstuck:
~ Julie Morgenstern

What I like about this book is that it is really looking at ‘why.’ SHED is an acronym for ‘Separate the Treasures’; “Heave the Trash”; “Embrace Your Indentity” and “Drive Yourself Forward.” In other words Julie is looking at the process of releasing burden, whether that burden be physical objects or other ‘things’ such as situations, obligations, emotions or decisions in our lives that are bogging us down. She draws from real life client stories and shows how together they work through practical changes to improve their lives. I’ve been a fan of Julie’s books for years and found the approach in this book very refreshing and encouraging. Simon & Schuster Books also available through

Lessons In Letting Go, Confessions of a Hoarder:
~ Corinne Grant

Most of us in Australia would know of Corinne for her comedy work, so it was a surprise to come across this poignant piece of writing from Corinne. Don’t get me wrong it definitely has it’s light-hearted and relatable moments, but it has obviously also been a moving and rewarding process for Corinne to produce this memoir of her own battle with ‘letting go’. One cannot help but get caught up in the honesty of her journey and as an organiser I have found it to be a useful reference tool for clients to help break down the walls of shame and stigma that can often be associated with ‘hoarding.’ I think it’s an important piece of writing especially because she writes from the heart about a moment of clarity which forced her to look at her life and her ‘stuff’ in a new way to eventually bring about positive change. An uplifting book with a happy ending and some practical, albeit at times ‘humorous’ tips inside.  Allen & Unwin Books

Keep in mind, if you don’t want to add to your clutter by purchasing these books, the better option is to borrow them from your local library. That’s what I do!

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