Clutter Busting
Brooks Palmer
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Buy *Clutter Busting: Letting Go of What's Holding You Back* by Brooks Palmer online

Clutter Busting: Letting Go of What's Holding You Back
Brooks Palmer
New World Library
224 pages
March 2009
rated 5 of 5 possible stars

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Is your house a candidate for disaster assistance? Is there a closet or cabinet that frightens you so much you don’t even open the door? If so, Brooks Palmer’s Clutter Busting could bring that life-changing help you’ve been hoping for.

The clutter that surrounds us is more than just an eyesore. Palmer points out that the trash piled up on every surface and in every corner impacts quality of life, as well. Clutter is “overwhelming your senses. Nothing motivates you anymore. You can never get organized… You feel buried, unaccomplished.” Sound familiar?

If clutter makes us miserable, why don’t we simply throw it out? Palmer explains why that isn’t as easy as it sounds. Sometimes we feel pressured to hold on to items that we’ve received as gifts or inheritances. Or maybe we suspect that we might have a pressing need for those AOL installation disks in the future. It could be that we paid a lot of money ten years ago for that still unworn little black dress and feel that throwing it out would be a waste of money. But enough about me. Palmer has several other explanations about why we fill our space with things in hopes of filling our lives with happiness, and more importantly, he suggests that we sometimes hold on to the junk in order to avoid changes.

It’s this complicated inner clutter that’s the root source of outer clutter, claims Palmer. This book is an attempt to help us recognize what’s really going on in our minds so that we can participate in the excitement of tossing the old useless attitudes and junk, and enjoy the unfolding of a new life.

Clutter Busting is packed full of anecdotes about Palmer’s clients who face the overwhelming consequences of clutter. The details may differ, but the core issues are nearly always the same and will undoubtedly resonate with readers who engage in the same behavior for the same reasons. Recognizing yourself in a self-help book can have a powerfully transformative effect.

Palmer also includes plenty of creative and eye-opening exercise – write a story about yourself based only on what you see in your home, or examine each of your belongings and ask yourself if you would pick it up from the curbside. Have a conversation with your clutter and let it tell you why it’s hanging around.

Clutter Busting asks you to give an honest evaluation of all that stuff, and insists “…75 percent of the things in your home are worthless to you.” Knowing that, you’ll find a collection of ‘clarity exercises’ to help you separate the treasure from the trash.

Just when you think you’ve absorbed the concept of busting clutter, Palmer brings up the really uncomfortable issues. “People can also be clutter,” he reminds us. If throwing out the old Christmas cards is traumatic, imagine trying to rid yourself of friends and relatives! Happily, there are exercises to help you through the process of freeing yourself from relationships that are no longer of value.

Brooks Palmer has spent a decade helping people break free of the clutter trap. He shows understanding and compassion for our clinginess; he also has an innate sense of timing that allows him to get tough when a stern voice is required. His stories of clutter-hoarding celebrities (unnamed, alas!) are reassuring as they illustrate that clutter knows no social or economic boundaries.

From bedrooms to address books to email inboxes, Brooks Palmer helps us seek out and destroy those sneaky piles that grow when we aren’t looking. This inspiring and lively self-help book will have you sorting, tossing, and organizing before you get to chapter two. Guaranteed!

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at © Deborah Adams, 2009

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