We often coach clients to live their lives by design rather than default. This involves making intentional choices about what they keep in their homes.

This doesn’t mean you can’t have a lot of miscellaneous stuff! It means you make deliberate, conscious choices about what you keep. You intentionally populate your home rather than just keep things by default.

A great example of living this way is fellow Professional Organizer Dana Arkinzada’s longtime client Glenna, who passed away recently at 84. She would have been very pleased that her story may help others:

Long before Marie Kondo or The Minimalists came on the scene, Glenna had been living out their philosophies in her own home. Glenna and I worked together for 20 years – she was my very first client! We mostly worked on paper management. When I came into her home, I was immediately struck by how lovely it was. She was a lover of antique collectibles, modern watercolors, and nature. Those interests were all represented in her small 2-bedroom home in a way that let you really see and appreciate the different objects, paintings/wall hangings, and furniture. It never felt sparse; it felt “just right.”

The more I got to know her, the more I realized that part of what made it work so well was how thrilled she was with her home. It fit her style and needs like a glove, and that synchronicity came through so clearly to anyone who visited there. 

Eventually, I helped her through two moves. She just loved eliminating things she felt she no longer wanted or needed or no longer represented who she was. And even when her living space was reduced to a small studio unit in memory care, it still had that cozy, intentional, and personal feel. 

It’s that intentionality and the freedom it allowed her to focus all her energy on her many outside activities and have her home truly be her place of rest and sanctuary that I’ll take forward with me as one of my favorite memories and lessons of Glenna.