Well here it is, the end of our summer spotlight on Professional Organizers from around the world. I do hope you’ve enjoyed this series. If you’ve missed a few and want to go back and catch up visit here. Today we welcome Christy Lingo to the blog!
Business Name: Simple Solutions Design
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Number of Years in Business: 3
Turning a sunroom filled with bankers box after bankers box of paper into an actual space for relaxation and reflection.
What is your favorite space to organize? Why?
I love helping moms with toys (either bedrooms or toy rooms). One of my main focuses as an organizer is to help moms and I find this is often a source of stress and frustration for them. I not only like to create space for the toys but work out a plan to help their family get onboard with staying organized.
What is one of your favorite organizing products? Why?
Expedit Bookshelves from IKEA. They are great in so many areas: toy rooms, bedrooms, offices, etc. I even have used them as a room divider in a basement. They are very versatile and depending on what you put on them can look great in a variety of situation. AND they are incredibly affordable. http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/categories/series/09064/
What do you find is the toughest part about being an organizer?
Staying organized myself. I tell my clients I am not the only one who lives in my home so of course things get out of place, misplaced or messy. Not to mention there are times when I don’t want to organize when I get home from organizing. I think finding the motivation to do so helps me relate to my clients.
Do you think you were born with the organizing gene or have you developed the skills over time?
Am I allowed to say I think a bit of both? My mother was incredibly organized (we had 5 kids so she had to be) and I found when I did move out on my own I fought against my list making, labeling urges just because I wasn’t going to be my mother. But as I matured I adapted more and more of her lessons and tactics. They are second nature now. But I know there was something deep inside that always wanted things orderly and processes simplified.
What area of your own home do you find the most difficult to keep on top of?
The kitchen. Mostly just the day to day type stuff like dishes and sweeping. We love to cook so we often make elaborate dinners. And after a long day of work followed by dinner (most times with a glass of wine) the last thing I want to do is stand over a sink and clean up.
What do you have a collection of? How do you display/organize it?
I love wooden statues, boxes, souvenirs, etc. I look for these when I take trips or when others go on trips and ask me what they can bring back for me. I incorporate them into the décor of my living room. Luckily, I don’t take many trips or have others taking trips bringing me things back so they haven’t gotten out of hand…yet.
How would your mom describe your room as a kid (in terms of organization)?
Yin and Yang…There are times when I would spend an entire day organizing and cleaning my room and other’s when I looked like a lazy teenager.
Do you have an organizing mantra for yourself and your clients?
Put it away. Now.
In a few sentences, can you tell us what your approach is for taking clients from overwhelmed to organized?
I try to have very client led sessions at the beginning. I let them tell me what they want to work on and offer solutions to work on clutter management based on what they are comfortable with at that time. With each of my long term clients, I have seen a light bulb go on in their heads seeming to say “why am I finding a way to keep this” or “I want to go back and pare down this some more.” I think this sort of client-led de-cluttering is important for them to identify their issues and start down the path of changing their behavior.
What is one thing you want others to know about working with a Professional Organizer?
It can pay for itself! Many people say they can’t afford to work with a Professional Organizer but I say if things with your clutter are out of hand you can’t afford not to. A Professional Organizer can help you pay your bills on time, eat the food you have in your pantry rather than shopping, find the clothes in your closet that fit so you don’t need new ones and teach you habits to keep your house in order so you don’t have to hire a cleaning service.
Before and after pictures are so motivating. Could you share an example of your work with us.