November Tips and Tricks

Tips and Tricks to Make Life Easier

It's easier to have fun when you're organized.

I'm back! Here are 4 quick monthly tips from me, Molly Boren of Simplicity Works Organizing Services. I hope they make your life a little easier.

Do Streamline

Holiday decorations are coming out, so take this chance to pare down. Find the pieces you don't love or haven't used. Donate them now, when charity thrift stores are happy to get them. Decide how much storage space you want to devote to decorations & stick to that volume. They will be so much easier to put away! Extra credit: temporarily remove everyday decorations to make room for the seasonal ones, & store in the empty holiday bins.

Don't Over­Decorate

Don't feel pressured to festoon the whole house with holiday decorations. A pop of the season in a few places can make just as much of an impact ‐‐ or more ‐‐ as a blizzard of tchotchkes. And it's a hundred times less stressful, leaving you more energy to enjoy the good cheer. If you need permission to do less, consider it given!

Get (and Give) Gift Cards

Gift cards for local businesses are the ultimate clutter‐free gift. They also build healthy economies & communities. Here in Ann Arbor, for instance, you can buy a Main Street Area Association gift card for your recipient's choice of any of their dozens of businesses.

Give Survival & Dignity

The International Rescue Committee has a wonderful Rescue Gifts catalog. Buy practical, proven items like mosquito nets & emergency classrooms for refugees around the world, starting at $18. Give in the name of friends & family for a meaningful gift like no other.

The Gift of Organization

Another gift idea: organizing services! (In addition to avoiding clutter, this gift actually removes it.) First and foremost, put a Simplicity Works gift certificate on your own wish list & spread the word to the gift givers in your life. Also consider one for friends & family who've said they want less clutter & more peace in their home or office.

Purchasers can contact, my webpage form, or 773‐915‐3537 to order a handsome gift certificate in any denomination.

Get Organized in December & January

I'm scheduling onsite organizing sessions in the Detroit & Chicago areas ‐‐ as well as phone or video sessions anywhere in the world ‐‐ for December and January. I'll also be available in NYC January 27 through February

Call or email or email to find your best time. (My Michigan & virtual schedules are the most flexible.)

March Tips and Tricks

Do Drawers Differently

You've probably heard pros & cons about Marie Kondo's books The Life‐Changing Magic of Tidying Up and Spark Joy. My advice is to cherry‐pick the ideas that work for your life. For me, one useful tip was to fold clothes vertically in dresser drawers. I love being able to see everything (& fit more in).

Don't Be Hyper­Prepared

Try to remind yourself: "I don't have to be hyper‐prepared," when trying to downsize an I‐might‐need‐this‐someday item; "I can be resourceful instead." This gem is from the Susan Pinsky, author of Fast and Furious 5 Step Organizing. We can borrow, repurpose, or buy to fill the need, or go without.

It's a relief!

Get Safe & Simple Photo Storage

Bonnie Hillman Shay of Mariposa Creative Solutions is a photo‐organizing guru, & if she says these photo boxes are high‐quality & a good deal, I'm sold. Photos getting sticky in plastic bins & or bent in flimsy envelopes? Protect them in these large (but not too large) archival boxes. Even if they're not organized yet, they'll be safe.

Give with Less Junk Mail

This is two tips in one: Charity Navigator tells you how reputable a charity is so you can be confident that your donation will be used well. They also offer this helpful advice for reducing those millions of solicitations you get in the mail after you've done your good deed.

Get Organized in April & May

I'm currently scheduling onsite organizing sessions in the Detroit & Chicago areas ‐‐ as well as phone/Skype sessions anywhere in the world ‐‐ for April & May. Call or email to find your best time. (My Michigan & virtual schedules are the most flexible. For sessions in Chicagoland, check this link for availability.)

We'll identify your trouble spots, break them down into manageable steps, work through them, & keep in touch to help you maintain your progress.


Festival for Women with ADHD: May in Michigan If you or someone you love is a woman with ADHD, celebrate the fact at the Better Together Festival. This May 14 event (near Ann Arbor, MI) is hosted by the godmother of all women with ADHD, Sari Solden, who wrote the groundbreaking Women with Attention Deficit Disorder 20 years ago. The book has meant confidence, hope, & a path forward for millions of women. I'm going with a bunch of organizers & clients & expect to learn from speakers & have fun with many wonderful women.