If you’ve never heard of Julie Morgenstern, chances are you’ve been living under a giant pile of clutter for the past twenty-five years. According to her, she is “an internationally renowned organizing and time management expert, New York Times best-selling author, consultant and speaker.” She is best known for her organizing books Organizing From the Inside Out and Time Management From the Inside Out, as well as her monthly column “Getting Organized” in O, The Oprah Magazine.
Most people think that getting their home, office, car or purse organized is simply a matter of having strict military-style discipline, so when that doesn’t work out they figure that there’s something deeply wrong with them. That may be (I mean, who am I to not judge?), but chances are you’ve just attempted a monumental task without the right tools. That’s like trying to perform brain surgery with Tonka Trucks.
Her “Inside Out” methodology does not involve wearing your underpants on top of your jeans; rather, she believes in customizing her process for each individual or company. This means starting each session with an comprehensive intake to understand who you are, what your goals are and, most importantly, listening to your stories of how your freakishly neat mom tucked you into bed so tightly it took you a week to burrow out.
No two people are alike (except twins), so it makes sense that no two people will benefit from exactly the same organizing method. Morgenstern designs a system for you based on your natural tendencies and psychoses rather than trying to force you to change your behavior. For example, if no amount of scare tactics or bribery will get you to hang your coat up when you get home, she may simply have you place a coat stand by the front door or hire a butler.
Her process consists of three basic steps: analyze, strategize, and attack. (Not you, the mess.) She says that this procedure works on anyone for any area of your life: home, work, bathrooms, as well as technology and schedules. While other professional organizing books give you shallow tips like “organizing your closet by which clothes will get you laid the fastest makes dealing with clutter fun!”, Morgenstern goes right to the deep end.
Let’s face it: we all have our own special baggage that we’ve been lugging through the years that has affected our relationships, jobs, and self-esteem. It’s silly to think that just because someone informs you that you ought to leave it behind it will magically disappear. So who is Julie Morgenstern? When it comes to clutter, she is an organizational wizard.
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