Today I had the pleasure and privilege of working with two young children (10 and 8 years old). Their Mom, a long standing client of mine, wanted to make the most of an opportunity that many people overlook. While it is wonderful to work with my clients, one of my many reminders is that in order to keep up a system, it involves every member of the family (not just Mom!). I can spend hours with Mom (or Dad) and they individually understand the reasoning and logic, however, if the whole family is not on board the result is often that Mom/Dad are able to keep up their end, but the kids often times, are unable to understand their much needed contribution and effort.
I started today with some basic purging and organizing. I gave the 8 year old two empty containers, then I asked him to empty his nightstand drawer. I asked him to consider the pile and really try and assess whether he needed or wanted to keep everything in there, or to consider the last time he played with or used something. I asked him to place into the “donate” container any items that he felt he was too old for, had not played with in a while or that he just simply did not want any more. The other container was for the “keeps”. I also had a conversation with him about how there are many children in our world who are not as fortunate as we are, and that any items he did not want any longer would go to a new loving and caring owner. He did not hesitate to separate out the “keeps” and the “donates” and was very vocal in his desire to share his “donates” with another child less fortunate than him.
When I moved into his sisters room, we had a similar conversation, and to my joy, she too was able to very quickly assimilate a pile of donations.
When Mom got back (yes, I sent her to go run errands as often it is much easier to keep children on track without Mum/Dad being there) she was amazed at how many items her children had parted with.
The bottom line for me today was that no matter how young, or old, it is never too late, or too early, to teach people that “less is more”!. Both children ended our day by keeping all the items that they felt were important to them, but also with a huge realization that although they loved those toys/cuddly bears/pokemon etc once upon a time, it was time for another deserving child to love them now.
They took great pride in showing their Mom all the hard work they had done and their newly organized space!
I love what I do! So happy to bring joy into peoples lives, young or old.
“Keep Calm and Get Organized”!