We all get organized!
A few weeks ago, I was able to talk to my lovely friend, and professional organizer, Aileen Fitzgerald Mitchener. Who, despite moving to a new city, having her life take a different turn than anticipated, (not to mention there being a global pandemic going on) started her own brilliant business, Aligned by Aileen.
Check out my interview with her below on what a professional organizer does, and some of her awesome tips! 2021 we are coming for you! In a completely organized way, of course.
Why should you hire a professional organizer?
While there are many things you can DIY, I'm a firm believer of the adage "you get what you pay for". Hiring a professional organizer is a worthwhile an investment in yourself and your home. The hours you'll get back not searching for lost items, the peace of mind you'll have seeing a clutter-free home, the money you'll save not letting items go to waste (or double buying things!) is invaluable. Organizers are truly experts in their field! While we encourage our clients to independently find systems and products that work for them, professional organizers bring with them years of experience working with clients, as well as education on organizing tools and products, new systems, and schools of thought about the how’s and why’s behind organizing habits that the average person may not be educated on. They will be able to bring understanding and creative solutions to your organizing challenges with fresh eyes. What does an organization session look like/how long does it take?
For all my clients, I always start with a free video consultation! You can book one at alignedbyaileen.com. It's a good chance for me to get to know what your goals and expectations are and if we are a good fit! However, most of my sessions are 100% virtual these days, both because of the pandemic and because a lot of the people seeking my services are in different cities. So for these sessions, we start with that 15-30 minute video consultation, I might ask you to take some measurements and pictures of the space(s). After the first video session, I will email the client a shopping list of things I think could help better utilize their space and fit within their budget. The client is never obligated to spend any additional money on products, but I find investing even just $20 in a few products can make a huge impact on a space! I may also give you a to-do a things to accomplish before our organizing session. Then, once you get all the products you need, we will schedule our virtual organizing session. This next session is where the magic happens! Here, via Zoom or Google Meet, I will walk the client through step by step on how they can fully transform their space! If it's a big project or multiple spaces, we might break this up into a few sessions or schedule a follow-up! I really love virtual organizing because it helps the client be way more independent and own their spaces! I find a person is way more likely to keep their space organized if they were involved in the process in a hands-on way. I've also gotten to help clients in other cities that I otherwise would not have been able to help! For in-person sessions, we'll have that video consultation first! If you are nearby, I may pop over to get a feel for the space and take my own measurements. This helps me get an idea of any products I will purchase for you in advance. In our in person sessions, we will take everything out of the space, and sort together, hopefully remove any items that no longer serve you. Then I help the client find efficient systems to organize, contain, or display their remaining items. How long this takes depends on many factors such as the size of the space, the amount of items the client has, and their level of disorganization. Some projects are as short as a two hour session, other can be several days worth of long sessions. I never do more than 8 hours in a day! What should I do to prepare for a session?
I get a lot of information from a client in my consultation form and from our initial video chat! A client should definitely have an idea of what their goals are for the space and what is and is not working for them. Sometimes my clients have difficulty articulating this, so I'm there to help ask leading questions to make those goals tangible. I would also want to know your personal style and pet-peeves! There is not a one size fits all approach. For some clients, I will write a short-do list before we meet again which might include things like begin removing items to be donated, build any furniture we pre-order, make a clean area that we can use to sort items, shop for any items you are purchasing on your own with a shopping list I curate for you, etc. Finally, I would have an open-mind and an open heart. Transforming a space can be emotionally overwhelming for some. It can be difficult to change especially if that involves letting go of things. However, I leave every client with a sense of peace, freedom, and independence they may not have had when I walked in.
Ready to get organized? All of Aileen's contact info is below!
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