Angela Ploetz

Certified Professional
Organizer®

Freedom Filer Certified
Consultant

Clear and Simple Certified®

President of the NAPO-Austin Chapter

 

My goal is to help people create a space that supports them, mentally, physically, and aesthetically. When you are free from the chaos you have the capacity to create more of what you want.

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Which Parenting Style Are You?

by Angela On February 16, 2011

I was talking to my trusty office assistant the other day about the stuff we still have from our childhood. We started talking about stuffed animals, school work, and old toys. She said when she moved into her house her parents sent ALL her stuff with her furniture for her new house in a moving truck. She said she has most of her work from when she was a child and bags of stuffed animals. Fortunately her house has enough storage space that she could neatly tuck the boxes away without having to look at the clutter every day. So her mother’s style was to keep everything. My assistant said that when she was a child she would get upset when her mother would try to get rid of things so her mother didn’t get rid of anything. Now, as an adult she will have to take the time to go through the boxes of stuff. She admitted that she feels confident she can get rid of 90% of the stuff, but is intimidated by the monumental task.

Then we talked about my mother’s philosophy, which was to get rid of things while I wasn’t looking. Now this may sound a bit extreme, but she really wasn’t bad about it. She knew that I was very sentimental and didn’t want to get rid of things (I know, can you believe it!). So she would get rid of the papers and a stuffed animal here or there. Nothing major and of course she would never get rid of any of my favorite things. But looking back this was such an amazing gift! I know I would have had a hard time with it as a child but, I have spent time as an adult going through a few boxes of school work and it wasn’t much fun.

What works best? I was working with a client and her 9 and 13 year old daughters and my client had a huge box of every drawing from both her daughters. We decided to give the box to the girls and let them sort through it (with the guidance of an organizer to keep them on track of course). The result was fantastic! The girls got rid of about 90% of the items. The best part was hearing their comments like: “Mom, I can’t believe you saved all this stuff!” or “look it’s my valentines box from second grade, why do we still have this?”

If you’re a parent struggling to decide what to do with all of your child’s school work, art work, toys, stuffed animals, and stuff, take the time now to start letting the things go. I think it’s best to get the kids involved. For some tips on this see my 4 part blog series Part 1 , Part 2  , Part 3, or Part 4.  

So which style are you? Which style was your mother or father? I’d love to hear your comments.

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