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Linda Samuels, CPO-CD®

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In The Other Side of Organized, Linda Samuels, CPO-CD® will encourage you to get organized enough to reduce the stress of life’s details and make time to embrace your passions. Already, thousands of clients and readers have found help and inspiration in her advice, personal reflections on change and connection, and vision of what can be accomplished when you find that sweet spot between chaos and perfection.

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« Noticing Change | Creating Expectation »

5 Fortune Cookie Organizing Tips

@2012 Photo by Linda SamuelsThere are some things that make me happy. Eating fortune cookies and reading the fortunes are some of them. There is something fun and silly about it, which is what I most enjoy. On a recent winter evening, my husband and I had Chinese take-out, which included one dozen fortune cookies, specially requested by me. At the end of our meal, we ate the cookies and shared our fortunes.  This ritual involves getting good fortunes, bad ones and those that don’t make any sense. No matter which variety, the sharing always provides interesting conversations and thoughts to ponder.

I’d like to share with you the best five fortunes from our dinner as they relate to organizing, starting over, and making the best of the time we have.


Fortune #1:  Gratitude

“You are very grateful for the small pleasures of life.”

Let’s begin with the basics. If you are feeling overwhelmed with the magnitude of editing, decluttering, and organizing that’s ahead of you, think about gratitude to help redefine your mood. Look for the moments that you’re thankful for. Be grateful for the one drawer you just organized or the fact that you were able to locate your keys or that you gave yourself five minutes at the end of the day to clear off your desk. Gratitude is there for you. It will enhance your daily experience and help propel you forward.


Fortune #2:  Let Go

“Forget those things that aren’t worth remembering.”

We know about physical clutter. There is also mind clutter. Sometimes it’s from all the “to do” items we are holding in our brains. Other times it’s the negative messages of past failures that we keep repeating. Release that stuff! Send the to dos to paper or an audio reminder. Stop the negativity from repeating. Find a new message that focuses on your strengths and accomplishments.


Fortune #3:  Small Steps

“He who climbs a ladder must begin at the first step.”

You are headed to great places. I see you in your organized, wonderful space. It’s supporting you and your needs. It’s working with and not against you. Be patient. Take one small step at a time and you will be successful.


Fortune #4:  Best Self

“Wherever you go, whenever you can, try to leave a gift.”

This is the gift of self. We all struggle and have challenges. As you move ahead in this new year, on this new day, bring the best of who you are to the party. Your positive energy and thoughts will attract others’ positivity. That will refuel your tank to keep you moving towards the organizing goals you seek.


Fortune #5:  Possibilities

“Be prepared to accept a wondrous opportunity in the days ahead!”

When we take the time to organize and clear our physical and mental clutter, we open up space for new opportunities and thoughts. It’s your time to move forward and get ready for things you may have never imagined. Your willingness to seek change and growth will draw possibilities towards you.

Which fortune resonates with you? What’s possible for you now? 

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Reader Comments (10)

This is such a fun post! I really appreciate the reminder that clutter can be mental as well as physical. Sorting out our thoughts is a necessary part of sorting out our lives.

January 25, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMargaret Lukens

Margaret- I'm so glad to know that you enjoyed the post. I had fun writing it. As you've mentioned, clutter comes in many forms from our physical spaces to the thoughts floating around our brains to our calendars that are overfilled with "yeses." Releasing some of it, in whatever form can make a huge difference.

January 25, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLinda Samuels

Love the gratitude fortune! That is why you and I are so connected: we are both about gratitude! I am grateful for you and our connection!

January 25, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEllen Delap

Ellen- And I am grateful for our connection too. It's interesting what stands out and that you picked out that particular fortune. It is one of my favorites. I truly believe that being able to stop to appreciate the small things in life gives us the ability to navigate when the waters get rough. I appreciate your stopping by to join in the fortune cookie conversation. You always add so much.

January 25, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLinda Samuels

I like “Forget those things that aren’t worth remembering.”

Too many people expend too much emotional energy regretting things they've done or not done, or being angry with someone else for what they've done or haven't done. It's over. Don't let what happened yesterday prevent you from seeing the good in today!

February 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJanet Barclay

This is so true, Janet. Using up that emotional energy, especially when it's negative can be so destructive. Being able to forget is very much part of that "letting go" process which is integral to moving on be it with things, relationships, situations or ideas. Thank you joining in and for adding to the conversation.

February 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLinda Samuels

Interesting point: "especially when it's negative"

Negative thoughts are what came to mind automatically, but there are certainly times when people get stuck thinking about good things that happened in the past and it keeps them from savoring what's going on right now.

February 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJanet Barclay

So true, Janet. Stuck is stuck, whether that's in the positive or negative realm. The idea of being able to appreciate the past and future, but live in the now is a wonderful goal to have. We all get fixated or stuck at points and bringing things back to "now" or "next" can be very helpful. Appreciate the continued dialogue.

February 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLinda Samuels

I go with #2. I believe that clutter begins to accumulate if we do not learn to let go of our stuff. The only way that we can start to get rid of our clutter is when we learn to let go of the things that we do not use or not need anymore.

October 14, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnne

Anne- Letting go is a great pick! This concept is key to forward movement and growth. Those things we hold onto that are blocking positive energy in our minds, spaces, and schedules can make us feel stuck. When we let go of those "do not use or not need anymore" things, we are able to breathe more easily and embrace possibilities. So glad you took the time to join our conversation.

October 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLinda Samuels

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