Hazel Thornton

How Can Less be More?

By Hazel Thornton | October 30, 2012 |

I have always struggled with the phrase “Less is more.”  I suppose I have taken it a bit too literally, thinking, “Less is NOT more. Less is BETTER, in many cases, but it’s not MORE, so why would anyone say that? “ But now, from an organizing perspective, I understand the phrase to mean that…

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Be Prepared: How Girl Scouts helped me get organized for life

By Hazel Thornton | September 9, 2012 |

It probably wouldn’t surprise you to learn that I was a Girl Scout. I started out as a Brownie and ended up working as a counselor at Girl Scout camps in the mountains of Idaho and Colorado as a young adult. I recently reconnected with some camp friends who reminded me how valuable the skills…

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Are Your Bookshelves Full of Friends? Or Strangers and Houseguests?

By Hazel Thornton | September 8, 2012 |

“Friends, Acquaintances and Strangers” is a popular method of de-cluttering, introduced by Judith Kolberg in her book Conquering Chronic Disorganization. This game can be played with any category of clutter, but I most often use it with clients whose bookshelves are overflowing. (Not to mention their floors and other surfaces.) Readers are loath to part…

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Playing the Game of Organizing

By Hazel Thornton | August 28, 2012 |

Why is organizing so much fun for me, and not for everyone? Maybe it’s because I’ve always liked games and puzzles. I woke up with a song in my head, “One of these things is not like the other”, from Sesame Street. I’d already written most of this post and realized that “One of these…

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The Fractal Planner: An Electronic Task Management Tool Review

By Hazel Thornton | August 18, 2012 |

Several years ago, before I moved to Albuquerque (a detail which will be important here in a minute), my neighbor called to ask if I would come over and help her middle-school-age boys with their math homework. Their father wasn’t home, and she was at a loss. I agreed because: 1) I loved my neighbors,…

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This Photo Trick Cures Clutter Amnesia!

By Hazel Thornton | July 29, 2012 |

My friend Jane (well, one of them…I have more friends named Jane than anybody I know…) is de-cluttering this weekend and texting me periodically with her progress. She writes: “So glad you taught me the photo trick. If not, I would be crying with frustration rather than feeling pleased with my progress!” The “trick” she…

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Memory Tip: One is for Gun

By Hazel Thornton | July 25, 2012 |

One time on a cruise ship sea day, when there were only on-board activities to choose from, I attended a little seminar on improving one’s memory. Greg Gleason, who doubles as a stage magician at night, amazed and entertained us with his memory tricks and taught us “One is for Gun”. “One is for Gun”…

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All I Really Need to Know About Organizing I Learned in Yoga

By Hazel Thornton | June 26, 2012 |

As a professional organizer I have found that yoga provides a perfect metaphor for the balance we are all seeking in our lives. Balance helps us organize our space, manage our time, and improve our relationships with ourselves and others. Here are 7 lessons I have learned from yoga class. They are all based on,…

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Occupied Staging and De-Cluttering for Home Sellers

By Hazel Thornton | May 31, 2012 |

This is the companion article to The Occupied Staging Clutter Flow Chart. It answers these questions: What is “Occupied Staging Clutter”? Why can’t I part with my clutter? What should I do with my clutter? What if, despite my best intentions, I am still living with clutter?

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Who’s Afraid of Their Storage Unit?

By Hazel Thornton | May 19, 2012 |

Have you seen A&E’s Storage Wars? This cable TV show features abandoned storage units being auctioned off to the highest bidder. The bidders are essentially gambling on whether or not the contents will be worth more than they paid for them. Usually they’re full of crap. Sometimes there is a treasure inside. Either way, I…

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