I’ve got a problem, I love everything!

Why is that a problem? A woman of Dr. Siegel’s acquaintance lives in a mansion. The woman’s friends keep telling her to move. She has no interest in moving. She doesn’t need to move. It’s not a problem.

I love everything, and I’m moving to a much smaller place. Can you help?

Dr. Siegel loves helping people prepare for their next adventure by supporting their choosing the best stuff for a full, good, wonderful life. And she helps find good homes for stuff that needs to go. Contact Dr. Siegel here.

If you want to do this on your own, Dr. Siegel says, “I’ve discovered that if people watch television shows about hoarding, they may find themselves letting go of lots of stuff they don’t need. My theory about this is that the primitive parts of our brains do not know it’s someone else’s stuff, and there is a primal instinct to make order and beauty.” Peter Walsh starred in two hoarding shows, and you can find free episodes on the web. Even watching the trailers can be inspiring. Some people like reading Karen Kingston’s book Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui (but no one likes the advice about intestines—so ignore that bit). Marie Kondo’s book about the magic of tidying is a little nutty (she’s very young and obsessive) but it can be helpful. Julia Morgenstern’s book about Organizing from the Inside Out can be helpful. Basically there are many books you can find at your local library which are helpful and inspiring.

I have a problem. It’s my closet.

Can you be more specific?

How do I make my clothes closet an oasis of calm and joy?

The short version is:

First:
Why are you storing art in your closet? And please can you store it archivally? Start here (Dr. Siegel is not compensated for this endorsement, and when you compare prices you’ll see why this link is here. Get the right size archival tissue and boxes.)

Second:
Get rid of everything except stuff (especially clothes) you use and stuff you love. Learn about what clothes make you look and feel good. Click HERE contact Dr. Siegel for a FREE the chapter from her book Open and Clothed entitled, “What Makes You Feel Beautiful?”  Make sure the stuff you use and love is cared for, and kept in good shape, so that you look good and feel good in it. Only buy more stuff you use and/or love. Repeat, letting go of stuff as it no longer fulfills those criteria.

If you’ve got stuff that you keep for the memories, that’s fine, just make sure the stuff you use and love is easy to get to, and the stuff you don’t use is stored in a respectful way–not in the way.

Can you help me with my closet? I know it’s not art but….

Dr. Siegel also can work with you on calming your closet. Years ago, she wrote a best-selling book about clothes called Open and Clothed. She’s an expert at this, too.

I have a question I don’t see on this list.

Please contact Dr. Siegel and ask it.

I don’t get it. If you’re giving away all this information, how do you make your money?

Folks who don’t want to do the legwork you see detailed here, or don’t feel comfortable doing it alone, hire Dr. Siegel.

It’s like this: Some people enjoy buying Chez Panisse cookbooks and preparing food at home; other people love going to the restaurant in Berkeley, and paying the restaurant to cook, serve, and do the dishes. Dr. Siegel respects both approaches. If you want to do it yourself, do so. If you’d like to work with someone, she’s here.

I found a great art advisor.  No offense, but it’s not you.  He charges a commission that seems really reasonable.  Is five percent a reasonable commission?

No offense taken.  But please be careful:  Like in the financial services industry, you want an advisor who is a fiduciary, meaning that the advisor puts your interests first.

If an art advisor charges you a commission, s/he has what’s called a “conflict of interest”  —  the person would want you to pay a higher price, so that the earnings he or she pockets gets larger.

If a person bills you at a flat rate, or by the hour, there is no conflict-of-interest.

I can’t believe how helpful this has been. Can I send you a consulting fee?

Dr. Siegel really gets asked that question. A consulting fee is a lovely idea.  Thank you for that kindness.