Stop Clutter from Stealing Your Life is written by a recovering clutterer who knows first-hand what clutter can do and how it can be controlled.
Stop Clutter from Stealing Your Life gives you the practical advice you need to de-clutter your life and get yourself on the path to recovery. The tips you'll find throughout, such as clutter-free zones or establishing systems and filing habits, will get you organized for good.
©2001 Mike Nelson; (P)2003 Listen & Live Audio, Inc.
"A helpful guide for improving your life." (AudioFile)
"This book will show you the way to unburden your life." (Ann W. Richards, Former Governor of Texas)
"With Mike's step-by-step process through every room in the house, I think any clutterer can reform." (K.J. McCorry, Public Relations Chairperson, National Association of Professional Organizers)
It took a long time to get to any meat in this book, beyond the author's repetitive talking about himself and his own experience, and the meat isn't very "meaty." This might be helpful to someone who daily can't get into his own bed because of the detritis there -- but for a typical person looking for organizational help, this is WAY 'round the bend. If you are just looking to straighten up a bit, this likely is not for you, in spite of the claim to the contrary early on in the book. (On the bright side, having listened to most of it, I was easily able to discard the CDs without any guilt whatsoever.)
I was disappointed in this book. Expecting to get some pratical advice on organizing my life, I instead got bogged down in the particulars of people who suffer though clutter as a legitimate disease. After listening to 1 hour and not getting any practical advice, just some scientific terms for chronic clutters, I gave up. It was a waste of a subscription for me.
There's little here that's not common sense. The author tells us things like; it takes less time to do the dishes everyday than it does if you let them pile up and get moldy. No kidding. Perhaps the most valuable thing about this book is the lists of organizations and professional help. But, if you don't write them down right away, it's difficult to find them again in an audio book.
This book distinguishes between simple clutterers and those who would be diagnosed as Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Hoarders. The DSM IV codes are 303 and 301.4(I've forgotten the exact name for the codes). The author writes that the line is crossed from bad habit to mental illness when the person is sleeping on less than half his bed because the other half is occupied with stuff. A good friend of mine is a clutterer, but her stuff does not yet occupy half her bed.
I listened to, and then gave her this audio. The best part of the audio is that it describes, better than I could, what the price the clutterer has paid for her habits. If you have a serious clutterer in your life who has not yet acknowledged that she has a problem, then this audio might help. Or if you know you are a clutterer and don't know where to begin, then this audio can help.
I think of "clutter" as being a little scattered or disorganized. This author uses "clutter" specifically in referring to a mental illness related to OCD. As other reviews have noted, this book has little or no practical advice for most people, and limited advice (outside of anecdotal musings and self-help group listings) for those with the condition. Listening to this book was like listening to your chatty neighbor that just went to the doctor instead of going to the doctor yourself. The second hand help isn't much help at all. Do you REALLY need someone to explain to you how to clean your toilet or sort your laundry?
Many times married and wavering between the ridiculous (vacuuming up a cat or a baby that might be misplaced) to the nearly-repellent (much too much about his personal life), Mike Nelson has written a book that can be helpful, but the motivational stuff at the beginning is far too long. He also doesn't really seem like a person I want to get close to.
He makes a legitimate point that hoarding CAN BE a sign of emotional problems, and that it is a matter of degree. But I found much of value in this book, and have some plans on what to do first, and second, to solve my own issues.
Kudos to the charming narrator David Elias - I think I'd rather sit down with him and have a beer much more than I'd want to share a drink with author Nelson.
This book is for those who have an obsessive compulsive disorder for which clutter is a symptom. It is NOT for those who are simply looking for some short cuts to a less cluttered life.
This is a book for those who need the support of a 12 step program. It is NOT for those interested in spending 12 hours cleaning out the basement.
This book may be very helpful for those who can't help themselves. It is NOT very helpful or interesting for OCD free.
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