This blog features over 300 articles by international bestselling author and leading clutter clearing, space clearing, feng shui and healthy home expert, Karen Kingston

What’s different about my professional clutter clearing practitioner training

Clutter clearing practitioner

Professional organizing has been around for quite a while. The National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals™ (better known simply as NAPO®) was founded in 1986. It trains professional organizers and productivity consultants, which it defines as follows:

A professional organizer supports evaluation, decision-making, and action around objects, space, and data, helping clients achieve desired outcomes regarding function, order, and clarity.

A productivity consultant supports evaluation, decision-making, and action around time, energy, and resources, helping clients achieve desired outcomes regarding goals, effectiveness, and priorities.

If either of these two definitions makes you jump for joy, you’ll love the training they offer and it will enable you to provide a useful service to clients seeking this type of help in their life.

What’s different about my clutter clearing practitioner training

The professional training I am offering is very different.

There is nothing else in the world that I know of that is even remotely close to this training. If you truly want to help people remove clutter from their lives for good then taking this course is the only way to go. You will change your clients’ lives and your own life as well. – Previous trainee

Organizing can be done on a purely mental level. It’s about tidying and arranging things so that you know where everything is. Productivity management takes a similar approach in relation to time.

The clutter clearing methods I teach go much further than this. They are about letting go of everything a person no longer loves or uses to bring themselves up-to-date with who they are and where they are headed in their life. It’s an extraordinary process of restoring integrity, one item at a time.

The impulse for clutter clearing is therefore not just a mental one. It comes from a higher part of a person that sees how restricted their life has become by their over-accumulation of material possessions and can feel how the stagnant energy that collects around clutter is affecting them. This part of themselves sees the bigger picture and wants change.

The clutter clearing process usually brings up emotions and involves some tough decisions along the way. So it’s not as easy as tidying and organizing, but the rewards are far more fulfilling. It’s freeing and empowering. It allows a person to reclaim their life, and it opens the door to new possibilities so that they can move forward rather than living in the past.

This is no ordinary course about helping people declutter and getting organised. Yes, you’ll learn effective techniques to do that, of course, and you’ll learn much more. A key part to the training is learning how to source the reasons behind their accumulation of clutter; this realisation will prevent the client from accumulating more clutter in the future. – Previous trainee

A unique aspect of my professional training is that I teach practitioners how to open a space for clients to see for themselves why their clutter accumulated in the first place. This lies at the heart of the remarkable effectiveness of my techniques because, without this level of insight, clutter tends to quickly build up again.

Who my professional clutter clearing practitioner training is for

My training is for people who naturally live clutter-free and want to learn how to help others do likewise. The people who make the best clutter clearing practitioners are those who already have a good balance between having the things around them that they need to live life to the full, but not so much that it holds them back in any way.

They are well organized but not obsessively so, and they generally do things on time or ahead of time rather than procrastinating. They are genuinely compassionate, non-judgmental, and endlessly patient, yet have the ability to be objective, firm and decisive. They see clutter for what it is and how it affects people,  and are committed to helping clients learn to see this for themselves, let it go, and move on.

Clear your own clutter first

Some people are attracted to this profession because they are battling with their own clutter issues, and they hit upon the idea of teaching what they themselves need to learn.

This rarely ever works. It doesn’t work for the clients because they can only make limited progress when being coached by someone who hasn’t yet taken the journey themselves.

And it doesn’t work for the professional because the last thing they feel like doing when they get home after a long day of helping clients with their clutter is to spend time sorting through their own. Not only that but they are faced with the daily hypocrisy of advising others to do something they don’t do themselves. And unless they have very strong principles about never accepting discarded items from clients (essential, in my view), they may also be confronted with the temptation to acquire more things, which means this line of work can add to their clutter rather than reduce it.

So before applying to take my professional training, I ask all trainees to take my trilogy of online personal clutter clearing courses first:

Fast Track Clutter Clearing
Zero Procrastination
Clear Your Paper & Digital Clutter

This is then  followed by a more advanced course:
Living Clutter-Free

I am not the same person who signed up for the first online course – I believe none of the trainees are. I remember emailing Karen that I thought this course would be life-changing. I had no idea. An interesting thought after having been certified is now that I have completed the training, I understand how much more there is to learn! – Previous trainee

All the courses have been created in such a way that they can be engaged at whatever level a person needs. This means that someone who has already sorted through all their things and wants to move to the next level will get as much from them as someone who is just getting started. In fact, many people tell me they get more from the courses when they repeat them than they did the first time around. Even my certified practitioners like to regularly re-take them because they discover deeper levels each time.

Is there a need for clutter clearing practitioners?

An estimated 3% of people living in the West have a hoarding problem, and this figure is increasing year by year. Some statistics I’ve seen put it as high as 5% or 6% of western populations, which means, in effect, that there is someone who has hoarding behaviour in just about every street.

A further 30% of the population say they avoid going home because they find the mess in their home so overwhelming. Only 10% say they have negligible clutter or none at all. My Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui book was published in 1997 and is still going strong, with sales of over two million copies in 26 languages. There’s a lot of clutter out there!

So yes, there’s definitely a need, and that’s why I’m offering my professional training course, featuring a range of techniques and skills that are not taught in any other program. It’s primarily designed to help clients before they get to the stage of clinically defined hoarding, while it’s still relatively easy to assist them in turning their lives around. It’s very rewarding work for those who feel called to do it.

If you would like to train

If you’re interested to take my next professional training in 2019 and you haven’t yet taken the required preliminary courses, you’ll need to get your skates on!

I usually offer all the courses twice a year but they will only be offered once this year, during the months of March, April, May and June 2018, because I’m taking some time out to focus on writing new books. The next series starts on March 5.

More information
Professional Clutter Clearing Practitioner Training, 2019
Testimonials from previous participants
Calendar of online courses

Related articles
About professional clutter clearing
The difference between organizing and clutter clearing

Copyright © Karen Kingston 2018

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How clutter clearing can change your life

Clutter clearing can change your life

In my early teens, I had a friend whose life was in chaos. She was thirty-something years old, her marriage was on the rocks, she had two unruly pre-school children, had put on weight, lost touch with her friends, and never seemed to have time for the greatest passion of her life, which was painting. She had been slowly going downhill like this ever since having children and was becoming more and more depressed. Her home was a total mess with clutter everywhere.

Clutter clearing help

One day I could stand it no more. There was nothing I could do about her marriage or any of her other problems, but something I did feel I could help her with was getting her home back in order. I offered to visit and do just that. Frankly, she was beyond caring and told me I could do whatever I liked.

The next day I worked from dawn till dusk. The kitchen alone took me until midday. Every dish and pan she owned was caked in decaying food. Every cupboard and surface was filthy and littered with debris. The fridge was a nightmare. I cleaned and organized the entire space and threw out three big garbage bags full of stuff.

Seeing the kitchen restored to its former glory, my friend suddenly became interested in helping. Together we polished off the rest of the house, throwing out a further seven bags of broken toys, magazines, and general clutter, and a whole carload of clothes, books, and other items that were donated to a local charity shop. At the end of the day, exhausted but jubilant, we surveyed our work. Her home had been totally transformed. She was speechless with delight.

Clutter clearing results

A few weeks went by and she invited me to visit. Not only was the place still spotless and tidy, but propped up in pride of place in the front room was a magnificent new painting in bold, joyous colours. My friend looked radiant and so did her husband and children. By taking control of her home she had taken control of her life. Or, as she herself put it, ‘I’ve reclaimed my spirit!’

This was my first experience of clutter clearing as a means to personal transformation. I watched as the months went by and she created her life anew. She regained her figure, rebuilt her marriage and social life, tamed her unmanageable children, and became a fairly well-known artist. Time and time again she told me she dated the changes from the day we clutter cleared her home.

Clutter clearing is life-changing

Since those early beginnings, I’ve seen this same effect many, many times. Over the last few decades I’ve done hundreds of consultations to help people to clutter clear their homes, my online courses have helped thousands more, and my books have reached millions.

Clutter clearing works because it frees up energy and creates space for new and better things to come into your life. It’s the most effective way I know to get things moving again if you feel stuck in any way.

Fast Track Clutter Clearing online course

Related article
Clear out the old to make room for the new

Copyright © Karen Kingston 2015, updated 2018

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Online clutter clearing courses in 2018

Online clutter clearing courses with Karen Kingston

My publisher once sat me down and said, ‘Look, Karen. You can help around a thousand people a year through teaching your online courses, but if you use your time instead to write new books, you can help millions!’

She was absolutely right, of course, so I hope you’ll understand the announcement I’m about to make…

I will only be teaching seven online courses in 2018

I love teaching my online courses and usually offer at least a dozen each year. But 2018 will be different. This year I’m going to primarily focus on writing new books so will only be offering seven courses during March, April, May and June, and then there will be no more until 2019.

They are all sure to fill to capacity so if you’re planning to take one, and especially if you’re interested to take my Professional Clutter Clearing Practitioner Training in 2019 and have not yet taken all the preliminary courses, please book sooner rather than later to reserve your place. All bookings are fully refundable up until midnight GMT the day before a course begins, so if your plans do change you can cancel and receive a full refund.

Online courses in 2018

At the time of writing, there are still places available on all courses:

March 5-25, 2018
Fast Track Clutter Clearing
For help with all types of general household clutter, except for paper clutter and digital clutter, which is covered in the Clear Your Paper & Digital Clutter course.

March 5-25, 2018
Creating Conscious Space
Learn how to bring consciousness to your home environment so that it will nurture and support you at deep levels. This course is for people who have already taken my Fast Track Clutter Clearing course and successfully cleared much of their clutter, and for those who already live clutter-free.

April 5-25, 2018
Zero Procrastination
Learn how to restructure your life top down, overcome procrastination, and get things done.

May 1-30, 2018
Clear Your Paper & Digital Clutter
For help with all types of paper clutter, including books, magazines, clippings, photos & documents, and their digital equivalents.

May 5-25, 2018
Fast Track Clutter Clearing
For help with all types of general household clutter, except for paper clutter and digital clutter, which is covered in the Clear Your Paper & Digital Clutter course.

June 1-30, 2018
Living Clutter-Free
This is a required course for anyone wishing to apply for Karen Kingston’s Professional Clutter Clearing Practitioner Training. It is also open to anyone who has already taken the three foundational clutter clearing courses (Fast Track Clutter ClearingZero Procrastination & Clear Your Paper & Digital Clutter) and is ready to go deeper.

June 5-25, 2018
Declutter Your Clothes
How to declutter and organize your wardrobe from top to bottom

About taking more than one course

Most people find that it works best to take one course at a time and do it in depth. Taking two courses at the same time is possible but it’s not recommended unless you have the time and commitment to do so.

More information

About online courses
If you have any questions, feel free to ask

Copyright © Karen Kingston 2018

Posted in Announcements, Clutter clearing | Be the first to comment...

The energetic effects of body piercings

Navel body piercing

I recently met a man who told me about a problem I had never considered before. His sister works for a funeral service provider, where they sometimes discover that a deceased person has a lot more jewellery than their relatives realize. It takes the form of body piercings.

‘Basically, wherever it’s possible in the human body to pierce a hole, they’ve seen someone who’s done it’, he said.

A dilemma for funeral workers

In many countries, the decision about whether to leave jewellery on the person’s body during cremation is made by the family. It would be dishonest of the funeral staff to keep the metal piercings, even if they did so purely to avoid shocking the relatives.

So the strategy that this particular company has come up with is to put all the items in a little bag and give it to the next of kin after the cremation ceremony. This method of dealing with the issue also avoids polluting the environment with toxic vapours from metals that melt during the cremation process.

Body piercing statistics

‘This doesn’t happen very often, though, does it?’ I asked.

‘Oh yes,’ he said, ‘It happens all the time!’

I checked out body piercing statistics and, sure enough, it says that 14% of Americans have a piercing somewhere other than their earlobes. Of these, the majority are women (72%), the most common areas are the navel (33%) and the nose (19%), and 2% have had their genitals pierced.

A Huffington Post article from 2012 puts the figure even higher, at 36% of Americans, which includes 56% of millennials aged 17-25. I had no idea it was so widespread.

People who have body piercings no doubt consider them to be desirable. But apart from the predicament they can cause to funeral workers and the surprise they can give relatives after death, there may also be health effects during life that they are not aware of.

Body piercings and electromagnetic radiation

Metal is a wonderful conductor of electricity, which is why it is used in wiring. However, metal anywhere on the body amplifies the amount of electromagnetic radiation (EMR) that is conducted through the tissues, and we are exposed these days to very increased levels of EMR from all the electrical equipment and devices that we use, as well as from ambient WiFi, radio signals, TV signals and radar. It was fine to wear metal close to the skin in pre-industrial times but not such a good idea now.

EMR affects human tissues in a number of ways, from inhibiting DNA repair processes to interfering with melatonin production and cellular communication (see Biological Effects of Electromagnetic Radiation).

Some people have surgical metal implants for health reasons, so I’m not suggesting they should be removed. The benefits will usually far outweigh the EMR effects. But it would certainly be preferable to use a non-metallic material if such an alternative is available, and adorning your body with metal when there is no health reason to do so really makes no sense at all.

Body piercings and acupuncture meridians

Body piercings are nearly always located in places that correlate to acupuncture points on the body’s meridians of energy. Acupuncturists use these points to insert fine needles for short periods of time to modify or unblock energies that are causing health problems, so having a permanent metal piercing there is certainly going to have an effect.

There are a few documented cases of healing results where a body piercing happens fortuitously to have been placed at the exact location where it stimulates an acupuncture point that corrects an imbalance. But I have yet to meet an experienced acupuncturist who recommends permanent body piercings. They can play havoc with the flows of energies through meridians, especially those placed on or close to the centre line of the body, such as the navel, nose, tongue or chin. Even wearing a necklace with metal components or glasses that have a metal bridge across the nose can cause problems, and dental fillings certainly can.

Dental amalgams are made of 50% mercury with varying quantities of silver, copper, tin and sometimes zinc. Many people have recovered from debilitating health issues as a result of having amalgams removed, and this is usually attributed to the fact that they are no longer inhaling toxic mercury vapours. But many dentists and acupuncturists I have talked to believe that another reason for this is that each tooth is connected to a meridian of the body. Removing the metal from a tooth allows the meridians to regain their full function, which restores health to all parts of the body located along that meridian.

A personal experience of this I once had is that I cured an ingrowing toenail by tracing the meridian line up to a tooth in my mouth and asking my dentist to check it. It looked fine externally and was not giving me any pain but, sure enough, an X-ray revealed internal decay, and after dental surgery my ingrowing toenail corrected itself.

Body piercings and metal allergies

I’m venturing into territory where I have no personal experience now, so I’m simply going to include here links to two sites that contain advice about the safest metals to use and those to avoid:

Avoid these metals for first piercings
What is the safest metal for piercings?

Body piercing verdict

Body piercing is not new. Ötzi, the oldest mummified human ever to be found, had pierced ears, and he lived over 5,000 years ago. Some Egyptian mummies have them too, and earrings were fashionable in ancient Roman times. Nose piercing is still practised in some Asian, African and Middle Eastern countries to this day.

But the wild variations we now see in the West mostly began in the hippy era of the 1960s and gained more popularity in the 1990s, when the trend was adopted by fans wanting to emulate the navel piercings of celebrities such as Naomi Campbell and Madonna. It started out as a statement of youthful non-conformity and has become a fashion trend. Millennials, in particular, see it as a cool thing to do.

But how clever is it, really? If you’re thinking of having a body piercing, I hope this article gives you pause for thought. And if you already have one, consider removing it if you’ve developed any chronic health problems at all.

Related article
Clutter clearing jewellery

Copyright © Karen Kingston 2018

Posted in Lifestyle & awareness | Read 4 comments...»

Radical clutter clearing

Joy after radical clutter clearing

Twice in my life I have let go of everything I owned and started again. From time to time, someone reads my description of this in my Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui book, feels inspired to do likewise, and contacts me to ask exactly how I did it. Here’s what I tell them…

How I radically decluttered

The first time I radically decluttered my life was when I was 19 years old and living in England. I decided to leave my boyfriend and move from one end of the country to the other, and I didn’t own a car. I packed a change of clothes and left everything else with him to use or dispose of as he wished. He was fine with this arrangement, and many years later he turned up at one of my clutter clearing talks in London and told me he liked my stuff so much, he still had some of the items.

The second time was when I was 37, single, and had a whole apartment full of things. I decided to move from the UK to Bali and not take anything with me. I sold all my furniture to a property developer friend and everything else at a car boot sale (a popular UK selling method, where people load up their car boot — called a trunk in the US — and drive to a car boot sale to offload their things onto anyone who will buy them). I got on a plane the next day.

In both cases, the decluttering was accomplished within a week of deciding to do it, and I’ve never looked back. By the time I left for Bali, I no longer owned a single possession from my childhood, teenage years, twenties or thirties, and was as free as a bird.

Less radical decluttering

Fast-forward twenty years. I was happily married, had achieved everything I’d moved to Bali to do, and it was time to go back to the UK. I owned several plots of land, had designed and built a house, hotel and conference centre, and fully furnished and equipped them all. Moving involved a huge decluttering this time.

I sold my properties, sold or gave away most of my things, and only kept twenty boxes of things and a teak Balinese daybed that we loved. Richard and I left Bali with two suitcases apiece, and the heavier items were shipped to the UK after we’d found a place there to live.

Radical clutter clearing is not for everyone

Radical clutter clearing is certainly not for everyone. Whenever I’ve made a major move, I’ve always had a very clear idea of the next important step to take in my spiritual journey after I had lightened my load. This meant that disposing of my things was both meaningful and liberating. I’ve also been fortunate to marry a man who has let go of everything and started a new life even more times than me.

When someone writes to ask me how to do this themselves, it suggests that they don’t yet have this clarity. I therefore recommend waiting until they are very sure what their next step will be. Letting go of everything you own doesn’t magically improve your life. It can leave you with no possessions and no idea what to do next. It’s essential to have a clear direction to go in, that you feel confident about, even if your logical mind can’t quite explain it yet.

One oil barrel at a time

A detailed map of the journey ahead is not required. In my experience, all you need to know with certainty is the next step ahead. That’s all I’ve ever known, and every major change I’ve made has worked out better than I could ever have imagined.

A lovely analogy for this can be found in Brian Tracy’s book, Eat That Frog! It comes from an experience he had of crossing a bleak 500-mile stretch of the Sahara Desert, where over 1300 people had lost their way and died. Then someone had the bright idea of placing a 55-gallon oil barrel every 5 kilometres to mark the route. After that, all anyone had to do was to drive from one oil barrel to the next. The next oil barrel would always be in view and so would the last one, so no-one ever got lost again.

The concept of “one oil barrel at a time” can also be applied to navigating through life. Get clear about your next step, and off you go. If you can’t yet see it, wait until you can. But wait proactively, not passively. Research, explore, be relentless in your quest until you get that next oil barrel in your sights.

Radical clutter clearing is not the same as minimalism

The art of living a spiritual life in the twenty-first century is to have the right things around you to accomplish what you’re here to do, but not so much stuff that it holds you back. It’s about finding the right balance.

Where minimalism so often takes a person off-track is that reducing the quantity of possessions they own becomes the goal instead of following their spiritual purpose. Getting by with the bare minimum is a pointless pursuit if it has no deeper meaning. It can seriously hinder your progress and distract you from your path.

And times have changed. Renouncing all material possessions is not even a valid route for an aspiring monk now. It worked in the past, and periodic meditation retreats are still of great value, but what the world needs at this time is people who can hold spiritual awareness while remaining part of the modern world. They are the ones who can truly make a difference.

Related article
What’s missing from minimalism

Fast Track Clutter Clearing online course
Zero Procrastination online course

Have you ever had the urge to radically declutter? Have you ever done it? What tips can you share? Please add your comments below.

Copyright © Karen Kingston 2018

Posted in Clutter clearing | Read 2 comments...»


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