Parenting: Don’t Try To Do the Most Important Job Alone

Parenting: Don’t Try To Do the Most Important Job Alone

 

A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.

Ecclesiastes 4:12

When it comes to moms and clutter, I feel like there are two kinds of women:

  1. Those who used to have beautiful, presentable, comfortable homes before kids.
  2. Those who have always struggled with clutter, but abandoned all hope of being clutter free once kids came along.

I see a couple parallels between learning to be clutter free and raising kids.

1. Both becoming clutter free and raising kids look simple for other people, and feel impossible for us.

Before working the Clutter Free system, I couldn’t figure out how everyone else kept their house so perfect. I now know that a lot of those people, because they are a part of Clutter Free Academy, had closet clutter. While their houses looked perfect, you wouldn’t dare open a closet door.  I had bought all the books and tried to enact a plan, but none of those resources seemed to cover my issues.

It was the same with raising small kids; it seemed like everyone else had the secret manual on how to grow little ones. They had a plan, and apparently I was out of school the day that plan was handed out. Even though I’d read all the books and taken all the classes, it felt like every situation that came up with my kids hadn’t been covered in the books.

2. Both becoming clutter free and raising kids can feel isolating and lonely.

One of the main reasons we created the Clutter Free Academy online community is because clutter can be incredibly isolating. The fear, guilt and shame that go with clutter can keep us secretive and alone.

It is the same with being a parent. When we feel that everyone “gets it” except us, it can lead to feelings of loneliness and “otherness.” I’m so grateful there were groups like MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers International) when my kids were little. I needed to sit with other moms who were honest about their struggles — not every day with their kids looked like tidy finger painting and super-fun playdates where lattes and laughter were served.

I think one of the best things we can do in every tough journey—including decluttering and mothering— is normalizing those feelings of just not measuring up. When we read the books, gather with others, and are open and honest about our own experiences, it’s amazing how we can lessen the feelings of fear, guilt and shame that so often accompany hard things.

One of the resources I will be giving the moms in my life is Grit and Grace: Devotions for Warrior Moms. I love that the two authors, Suzanne and Gretta, are as real about the challenges and self-doubt around mothering as they are about the fact that they feel like they may never recover from bringing children into their homes.

Don’t do any of this alone. The mothering, the decluttering or anything else you feel like you just have to “grit” through. Because while you may need to grit those teeth, you don’t have to do it alone.

Hang in There, Mama!

For those moments when you think you’ll never live up to the Supermoms around you—when you’re elbow deep in the grind of diapers and laundry and peanut butter sandwiches—you need a good dose of Grit and Grace.

This refreshing collection of 90 daily devotions comes from two moms who’ve found themselves face-to-the-floor in need of encouragement—and now they’re offering it to you. Through humor and vulnerability, these short messages of truth remove the filters of perfection clouding your vision and bring clarity to your purpose as a mom. As you read the Scripture and prayer that accompany each day’s message, you’ll discover more fully who you are in Christ and how to raise your children to reflect His love to the world.

In receiving grace from the One who is present in your life right now and in every moment, you will find you have ever more grace to give your kids.

CONNECT

Stop by www.suzannegosselin.com to get to know Suzanne, author and stay-at-home mom.

WIN

Enter to WIN! We are giving away a Grand Prize one lucky winner PLUS, Harvest House gave us 5 additional copies of Grit and Grace to give away to five more lucky winners! Our Grand Prize winner will get:
• A copy of Grit and Grace, of course!
• A $50 Starbucks card to take you and your mom friends out for coffee on us!!!

Enter to win by leaving a comment about your biggest kid related clutter issue below in the comments section. (We’ll randomly select 6 winners and notify them in the comments section by February 27th.)

REFLECT AND RESPOND

Today, look at the woman in your mirror and tell her, “God knew what He was doing when He picked you to be your kids’ mom.” Pray for God to guide you to reach out to a mom who needs to hear this same message: give her a call, drop her an email, or send her a quick text.

Kathi Lipp and Clutter Free thank Harvest House for their sponsorship of today’s devotion.

#339 Clutter in the Midst of a Crisis – When You Must Declutter Quickly Part 1

#339 Clutter in the Midst of a Crisis – When You Must Declutter Quickly Part 1

On today’s episode of the podcast, Kathi and Tonya Kubo chat about their recent experiences with “crisis moves” when they had to pack up and be ready to move in a very short amount of time. In part one of this series, Kathi and Tonya share the first three of seven tips to help you declutter in the midst of a crisis. 

On today’s show you’ll learn:

  • Why you should only have three places for your stuff to go
  • Why you need to have phases when taking on a big declutter
  • The value of asking “is it coming back?”
  • Why storage really is just delayed decisions

Thanks for Listening! Join us next week for Part Two. 

To share your thoughts:

To help out the show:

  • Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

• Subscribe on iTunes or subscribe now.

Meet Our Guest

Tonya Kubo

Tonya Kubo

Tonya Kubo is the illustrious, fearless leader of Kathi Lipp’s Clutter-Free Academy Facebook group. A speaker and writer, Tonya makes her home in the heart of California with her husband, Brian, their two spirited daughters and one very tolerant cat. Visit her at www.GreatMoms.org.

#336 The 2 Disciplines You Need to be Clutter-Free for Life (and how to get them) Part 2 with Tonya Kubo

#336 The 2 Disciplines You Need to be Clutter-Free for Life (and how to get them) Part 2 with Tonya Kubo

On today’s episode, Kathi and Tonya Kubo are back to share more details about the Clutter Free for Life subscription group and why you need it if you want to be clutter free FOR LIFE. Tonya and Kathi talk about the second essential ingredient needed if you want a clutter free lifestyle. 

On today’s encouraging show you’ll learn:

  • When you start to de-clutter it’s easier to say “no” to the things that don’t really belong in your life.
  • Why accountability is essential to the clutter free practice.
  • How this program can help you stay clutter free in your heart and home for life.

When you sign up for Clutter Free for Life you’ll receive STRUCTURE and ACCOUNTABILITY to help you live clutter free along with:

  • A Binder Cover
  • Letter from Kathi
  • Feature Teaching
  • Monthly Decluttering Plan
  • 1st of the month Planning Sheet
  • Last of the Month Celebration Sheet
  • Private Facebook Group
  • Monthly Group Coaching
  • Accountability Check ins
  • Weekly Goals, and Prizes

Clutter Free for Life starts on January 1, 2019

As a special offer for those in the Clutter Free Academy community you can sign up for the monthly subscription for $18.99 or pay $99 for the whole year.

AND if you subscribe before January 1st you’ll get the special intro price of $79! You’ll also receive: 

  • Free e-course Kick-Start to Clutter Free
  • Clutter Free Bible Study with downloadable book
  • And the first 100 subscribers will get a free signed copy of Kathi’s book Overwhelmed

Join Clutter Free For Life Here!

 

Thanks for Listening!

To share your thoughts:
• Leave a note in the comment section below.
• Share this show on TwitterFacebook, or Pinterest.

To help out the show:
• Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.
• Subscribe on iTunes or subscribe now.

Meet Our Guest

Tonya Kubo

Tonya Kubo

Tonya Kubo is the illustrious, fearless leader of Kathi Lipp’s Clutter-Free Academy Facebook group. A speaker and writer, Tonya makes her home in the heart of California with her husband, Brian, their two spirited daughters and one very tolerant cat. Visit her at www.GreatMoms.org.

333 Find Your Money and Lose Your Clutter – Deborah Smith Pegues

333 Find Your Money and Lose Your Clutter – Deborah Smith Pegues

On today’s episode, Kathi chats with Deborah Smith Pegues, author of The One-Minute Money Mentor for Women. Kathi and Deborah discuss the importance of women being financially literate. And Deborah shares practical tips for women who might feel overwhelmed by money issues.

On today’s informative show you’ll learn:

  • Why people who struggle with clutter often also struggle with money
  • What to do if you’ve been ignoring money and find yourself in a tough place
  • Deborah’s biggest money tip for the Christmas holiday

Enter to Win!

Grand prize- Win $50 in cash to go towards an outstanding bill, plus Deborah’s book The One-Minute Money Mentor for Women!  

Plus, FIVE lucky runner-ups will win a copy of The One-Minute Money Mentor for Women!

 

Enter by answering in the comments:

 “Share your best tip for getting out of debt?” 

*US residents only

 

 

Buy the book here.

Thanks for Listening!

To share your thoughts:
• Leave a note in the comment section below.
• Share this show on TwitterFacebook, or Pinterest.

To help out the show:
• Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.
• Subscribe on iTunes or subscribe now.

Meet Our Guest

Deborah Smith Pegues

Deborah Smith Pegues

Deborah Smith Pegues is a certified public accountant, behavioral consultant, TV host, and global speaker with an MBA in finance. She has written seventeen transformational books, including the bestselling 30 Days to Taming Your Tongue (over one million sold worldwide) and Emergency Prayers. She and her husband, Darnell, have been married nearly 40 years. Learn more

The Most Wonderful, Clutter Free, Gift-Giving Ideas for this Christmas

The Most Wonderful, Clutter Free, Gift-Giving Ideas for this Christmas

Tell me if this sounds familiar, friends. Your family members make the lists of all the things they simply MUST have for Christmas. Each list alone might actually be pretty do-able, but as you shop for those must-have items you also pick up a few dozen “Oh, they’d like this” type of things.

Or, their list is all big-ticket items and they’ll only end up with one or two things under the tree. That doesn’t feel very Christmas-y, so you pick up a few more items – just some little things, really.

Or you get the under-the-tree stuff done and then are left with stockings to fill with…what? Hmm. Maybe I’ll just head to the dollar store and find a cute trinket or two or eight…

Any of that sound familiar?

I’ve had years when each of those have felt true. In my desire to make the holidays special I bought items for those I love to round out the Christmas gifts or to fill the stockings. Then, after Christmas I realized that what I had done was stuck a bow on clutter and brought it into my home. The aftermath of Christmas can be an avalanche of clutter on top of what you are already trying to purge. Enough of that nonsense. I’d like to avoid that this year. No clutter with bows, thank-you-very-much. Who’s with me?

Here’s my plan to prep my home for Christmas and to bring home less clutter, and more joy.

First Declutter

Mildred, a member of our Clutter Free Academy Facebook group, posted a picture of an empty laundry basket in front of a Christmas tree. Above it was their Elf on a Shelf and a sign that said, “You’ve got to Give to Get! Please fill up the basket with toys you no longer play with and I will take them to the North Pole for other kids.” What a brilliant idea!

There are so many things our children no longer love or play with. So many things our teens no longer use or wear. So many things that are taking up space in our closets and desks. What if we took an evening as a family to get the ball rolling to purge and donate before the gifts start flowing in? Let’s put our items in the laundry basket first and show the kids how it’s done!

Buy Stuff You’ll Use – Literally

When we polled the Clutter Free group for some clutter free gift ideas the number one answer to come in wasn’t the same thing, but the same kinds of things—consumables. These are things we can enjoy, while using up.

  • Bath fun: fizzies, crayons, bubbles, shower gel in favorite scents
  • Cologne or body spray (especially for those “fragrant” teens)
  • Make-up and nail polish
  • Favorite candy and treats that you don’t purchase often
  • Spice rubs and entertaining food sets
  • Special flavors of coffee, tea, or cocoa

What if we filled those stockings with things that wouldn’t be around in a month? Some of the sweetest gifts are those we use up and remember fondly rather than having to dust or trip over all the time. This mindset works well for those we are buying for outside our home as well. Give the blessing of clutter free gifts!

Let’s Do Something Fun

Experiences were the second most popular recommendation for clutter free gifts. When grandmas and grandpas ask for family gift ideas, we can share places we’d love to go and things we’d love to do instead of stuff we’d like to have. Here’s a few ideas:

  • Memberships for the zoo or a museum
  • Season passes to the amusement park, local pool, or state park
  • Trip to a local attraction, escape room, or some fun thing you’ve wanted to try
  • Gift card for dinner out together, coffee dates with mom or dad, or other special treats
  • Pampering gift cards for mani/pedis, massages

There are all kinds of things we could do together that would be more meaningful than another video game or a piece of clothing that will wear out. Asking for experiences can be a brilliant idea. One year a friend of mine asked her mom to give her family an evening at a local escape room from a Groupon deal. She got a money-saving deal and they had so much fun together. It was a clutter free win-win.

Think Outside Boxes

When it comes to Christmas giving, we love to give gifts that are meaningful. I think we need to reframe what a meaningful gift is – sometimes it doesn’t need to be something our loved one keeps forever. Simple and small can be special. Pampering is something we can enjoy to recharge and when the massage is over we aren’t burdened with clutter. Family experiences provide memories we can treasure in our hearts and require no dusting or storage.

This Christmas, just say no to more clutter and yes to gifts that we can consume to bring joy. Merry Christmas, indeed. (Kids, in case you are reading this – I will take a massage.)

 

Kathi Lipp is the author of 16 books including Overwhelmed, Clutter Free, The Get Yourself Organized Project, The Husband Project, and Happy Habits for Every Couple. She is the host of Clutter Free Academy the Podcast! with Kathi Lipp and speaks at conferences across the US. Kathi is also the creator of Communicator Academy and Leverage: The Speaker Conference, both designed to help writers and speakers become the communicator God has created them to be.