Shalom Life | July 01, 2014

Looking To Organize Your Life? Barbara Reich Can Help

Shalom Life speaks to the professional organizer who tackles everything from playrooms to overnight bags

By: Caitlin Marceau

Published: June 6th, 2014 in News » World

For some, going away to a sleepover camp can be a stressful ordeal. The idea of leaving home behind to spend the summer with a bunch of strangers can be daunting. The idea of having to leave the comforts of home for the wilds of camp is unnerving. But it doesn’t have to be, thanks to Barbara Reich , and professional organizers like her. The 46 year old mother of two has been working as an organizer since before her company, Resourceful Consultants, LLC, was formed in 1999.

“My kids were young and I would go on playdates in people’s houses, and I could only talk for so long about how many hours they were sleeping and what they were eating. So I used to reorganize the playrooms during the playdates. So, if you’re that person, you get invited to a lot of homes for play dates,” she tells me in an exclusive interview.

Soon after, a friend she had worked with during her days of management consulting called her, and told her that a client was looking for someone to set up and organize a home office. The friend told Reich that she’s already given the client her number, her name, and encouraged her to take on the job.

“I told some other former colleagues that I’d done this and one person said, ‘Hey, I want you to set up my house like your house and I’ll pay you.’ And I said ‘Well, I feel kinda funny about that, you’re my friend, let me do it and you’ll take me out to lunch.’ And she referred me to five people, and it was word of mouth from thereon in,” she explains.

Reich organizes everything in a person’s life that requires organizing, be it collaborating with designers and architects to create the most of a new space, with household staff to maximize the use of existing space, or with people looking to cut the clutter from their lives.

She’s been asked to organize everything from offices, to cupboards to (more recently) bags for summer camps. And while the cost of having a professional organizer pack your bags for a trip to camp can be expensive, with the New York Post reporting that it can cost someone over $1,000 due to $250 being the hourly rate, it can be worth it for people short on time.

“Here’s the thing, if you’re a busy mother and you’re very stretched for time, packing the camp trunk is not something that allows you to spend time with your child. It’s one more thing that takes you away from your child. So if you can outsource that, it makes sense, if you can afford to do that. And that will free you up to spend time with your child that you otherwise wouldn’t have.”

Reich also released a book back in 2013, Secrets Of An Organized Mom, available from Amazon.com, Simon & Schuster, Chapters and Indigo just to name a few, which helps people learn how to keep clutter from overcoming their lives. Although the book is designed for mothers looking to spend less time cleaning and more time with their children, anyone can use the skills in the book to make their lives a little easier.

“The bulk of the book was probably written in flight back and forth to California, and a weekend where my family was skiing and I was sitting in a ski lodge. But, you know, it took me I would say, nine months,” she tells me. When asked if we can expect another book from her she replied, “that’s possible. There may be another book in me.”

And for anyone looking to make life a little less cramped, Reich offers some simple advice.

“If you can simplify your life as much as possible, and take out of your life all the things that don’t make you happy, then you will live a more clutter-free life, and a happier life.”

Solid words to live by.

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