This Time Last Year…….

This time last year we were forced to change, whether we wanted to or not.

2020 didn’t quite work out the way it was supposed to. Some of us had plans – good plans – and they had all gone out the window by Easter.

I don’t know about you, but I wasn’t ready for it. I didn’t have a ‘disaster recovery’ emergency plan for this kind of eventuality. I had a recession plan, not a pandemic plan. Very different.

The majority of my income was face-to-face work with hoarders, not online. Yes, I had a plan to build the online options, but that was going to be built up slowly during 2020-22, not in the blink of an eye. How was I going to survive?

No one could have predicted that some people’s incomes would literally disappear overnight, others saw no change, and some were even better off.

We all had a choice. Fight the change or accept and adapt.

As we pass the 1 year anniversary of the world going into Lockdown – some not for the only time – it’s a good opportunity to just reflect on how we’ve all survived and possibly even thrived.

Yes – I know it’s easier to focus on the negatives.  Our brains do that as a form of survival. If our brains only focused on the positives then the risks are higher.

If our cavemen ancestors had just looked at the woolly mammoth that was charging towards them and focused on the positives – he must be lovely and warm, what a lovely colour he is, he’s bigger than I expected and gosh, can’t he run fast – they were much more likely to get run over / eaten (did they eat cavemen?). They would have been risking their lives and that of their family back at the cave if they didn’t run away or slay the aforementioned woolly mammoth.

So I get it – your natural reaction is likely to be to focus on the negatives of 2020 and the pandemic.

That’s even more likely if you constantly watched the news.

I personally stopped watching it once they stopped showing all the inspirational stories and started criticising people and finding the negative news stories which of course is easy to do with the benefit of hindsight and the passage of time. It wasn’t helping me to focus, survive or thrive.

So as I was saying, before I so rudely interrupted myself, now is a good opportunity to just reflect and remind ourselves that we have survived, and maybe in some areas of life we’ve even thrived.

So time for my list of 12 positive changes over the last 12 months.

12 Unexpected Positive Clutter Clearing Changes Since Easter 2020

  1. Online Weekly Social Gatherings.

In the past, every 6 months or so I would start the quite frankly traumatic process of trying to:

  1. find a venue with parking that people could get to easily by train and road
  2. work out the cost and availability of that venue, work out how many people I needed to attend just to breakeven, then start marketing it to people who I thought MIGHT travel and pay for the event.

It was always nerve-wracking because more often than not I only just broke-even, and it automatically excluded people I knew would attend if they could but lived too far away (what do you mean you won’t fly into the UK from Australia for a 1 day event?!)

The Social Gatherings are SO much better because we have people from all around the world who can join at the click of a button and I can provide a whole term of Social Gatherings for less than the cost of one day of face-to-face.  (I will arrange a big face-to-face Social Gathering once the pandemic is over for those who can and want to meet those they’ve met online. Currently a picnic is looking most practical).

  • I had to fast-track my online Workshop Programme which was planned for 2021, and prioritise a workshop that people could use despite the unpredictability of the pandemic. And thus the Paperwork Workshop was born and has been helping people work on their Paperwork and E-mail Clutter ever since!
  • I have been able to help MORE people than I ever did when I was reliant on providing face-to-face help in people’s homes.
  • The pandemic has made more people face the reality of having to live with their Clutter Challenge 24/7 because of lockdowns, which means more people are finally asking for – and accepting – help, and thanks to the Social Gatherings are able to know they’re not alone and can talk to people without fear of judgement.
  • I have been able to update many of the 7 Step Journey videos which I might not otherwise have had time to do.
  • A TV Programme opportunity has come along that I might not have otherwise had time to explore and develop with the makers.
  • People who have been on my list for years have been ‘forced’ to embrace the online option, even though I’ve been offering it for years, because there hasn’t been an alternative since the pandemic began.
  • I have learnt how to use zoom and my camera for LIVE sessions (I even managed to figure out how to stop ‘flashing’ everyone who joined the LIVE sessions!)
  • I have been able to develop ideas of how I can help more people around the world using LIVE sessions and classes in the future.
  1. I have been able to enjoy my garden and wildlife more than I might otherwise have done if I had been doing as much face-to-face help as I have in the past.
  1. I have positively contributed to the reduction in carbon emissions by not driving anywhere. (I hope many people make the switch a permanent thing after the pandmic).
  1. Clutter Clearing survived – and is starting to thrive!

So what would be on your Positive Changes list?

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