client’s husband, london
A fairy tale that actually happened
Once upon a time there was a dark house haunted by chaos and indecision.
The day the door creaked open ever so slightly for Caroline to step in is when the magic started to happen.
Not magic in the sense of a magic wand that suddenly transformed everything, but magic in the sense of Caroline coaxing the inhabitant to make decisions that she obviously either didn’t want to make or didn’t know how to make — and to her great surprise she wasn’t dreading Caroline’s visits half as much as she would have expected.
Together they plotted a plan and worked and worked from one end of the house to the other. It wasn’t cheap and it was hard work but somehow it also wasn’t painful or at least not very.
But the real surprise was the transformation of the inhabitant. She once again became sentient. She felt perhaps it was okay to open her door outward, not only to let others in but to step out herself. After all there is more to life than stuff she thought. But it all became better because she herself finally had room to think in. The house became light and friendly, and the inhabitants lived happily ever after (so far).
I’m sure it will seem an exaggeration to say how my whole life has changed because of this one person but it has.
I’m still not exactly certain how it all started. I’d searched online several times for someone to help with my growing disaster of a house. I didn’t think I was a hoarder (but do hoarders ever believe they hoard?). I looked for a declutterer not too far away and for reasons unknown I kept finding myself looking at “Room To Think”.
But making that first communication was probably the hardest bit. By that time my liveable areas had shrunk so much around me that I was in fear of disappearing myself.
Just the idea of anyone entering my home was unnerving, it was embarrassing, humiliating, actually terrifying. However that first step of contacting Caroline was the very hardest part.
Once hired Caroline will carry the burden of all of your scary house bits so you can gather your thoughts to help plot a route to tidiness. The bad news is that you have to be there throughout it all. There is no way anyone but you can make the decisions that are needed. All the way to the end Caroline would always (and still does) ask if she could open a drawer, look in pockets, read bits of paper. She made phone calls for me. She helped me re-home loved possessions I no longer needed or used. We recycled, binned and even composted. She helped me find all of the right people for any work that needed doing.
Because she is paid in pounds not possessions she has no attachment to her clients things. That way there is never any doubt to her impartial views of where my excess things
She kept me moving ever onward towards our goals. Although it’s the results that count, having a nice journey through my oh so ever overwhelming mess of a house has even made some lovely memories.
I now live in a completely different house. Its transformation can’t be exaggerated. And it has actually had a knock-on effect to the rest of my life. For the first time in decades I have others inside to visit and I go outside daily myself. So when I say my whole life has changed, that’s not putting it too strongly.
In fact Caroline did such a good job she is seldom needed any longer. Whether you hire her to go through your whole house or just a kitchen, bedroom, storage area or office makes no difference. Decluttering has a lasting affect unlike just cleaning and rearranging piles of stuff.
Once you’ve experienced living in an ordered environment you will feel a freedom more than you ever thought possible.
After quite a few years of expecting to `get round to’ the rest of the stuff I need to do to my flat, and the stuff in it, I realised I needed some help to get unstuck.
I couldn’t quite believe I was considering paying someone to help me do what I should just get on with, especially when I don’t have much money, but I went online, found Caroline and gave her a call.
It turned out to be a good decision. She made it really easy for me to talk with her about the process, to get started, and to go at the right pace for me. And if you’re going to spend an afternoon considering dusty old posters and busted camping gear, I can’t think of a better person to do it with. It’s like pulling a few logs out of a stream, I’m now `getting round to’ other flat things too and I have Caroline to thank.
deena gornick, executive coach
Caroline, our alliance was so constructive in facilitating me into having the office I want for my creative work and into building the creative productivity of my clients who come here to work.
I am writing this from a space I now love that fills me with air, light, and motivation. I am doing the finishing touches and will send you photo of the finished product. You are born to this work, you do it skilfully and with sensitivity, warmth and levity. I am grateful for your time yesterday, it has been a catalyst for my moving forward in my creativity and in my career. Thank you.
I’d always thought about hiring someone to help me with clutter and clearing but thought of it as an extravagance and something I ‘should’ be able to do on my own. I was about to move into a small space with my partner and knew action was needed, so after investigating declutterers on line I decided to ask Caroline for help. It was a great experience.
Caroline assured me she wouldn’t throw anything away, that I would be in charge, and that the process would be collaborative, which it was. Caroline was wonderful at making it fun and focused, and being there when difficult emotions came up. With her support I cleared a lot, and the move with my partner was much easier as a result. I really wanted techniques so I wouldn’t amass things again. Caroline helped me to see how some of my personality traits needed altering to prevent things mounting up. Of course changes in personality take time, and some habits have been harder to shift than others, but many things have stuck; I tend to know where everything is now and many areas of my living space are cluttter free.
I would highly recommend Caroline, and am very glad I gave myself the gift.
k, london N5
I just wanted to write to say a massive and heartfelt “thank you” for all your hard work in helping me sort out my flat. As you know, I had such a sense of complete overwhelm regarding all the junk I had accumulated, especially since the death of my mother, I didn’t know where to start, and felt deeply ashamed of letting things, literally “get on top of me”. I couldn’t move for the piles of clothes, paper and general “stuff” that covered the floor entirely. It was deeply depressing and getting me down, yet I felt stuck and unable to tackle any of it on my own.
I was desperate…I knew couldn’t go on like this.
I’d read about specialist “Clutter Clearers”, so one day I Googled…and found “Room to Think”.
You immediately put me at my ease over the phone when I contacted you, and came to visit (only the third person I’d allowed over the threshold in more than a year – such was my shame as to the state of the flat!). There was no intimation of judgment from you – just a warmth, and solid, practical advice and support. With your patient and professional help, the paperwork mountain finally got addressed and sorted or shredded, numerous bin bags were filled, unwanted presents redistributed or discarded, and shed. Loads of those “rainy day” items got sent to charity shops or were given away…I began to get a grip, and with your encouragement, felt able to make decisions as to what to keep or chuck, which had previously felt impossible, and paralysing… and, most importantly, started to enjoy my place once more!
I wanted to write to you, as, on Sunday I had a lunch party, and my home was filled with friends, food and laughter again (something that had seemed so unattainable before I chanced upon your website, but had craved for so long). Last week I completed my Tax Return in record time, (because I knew where all my statements and accounts were), and my bedroom is clear, clean and welcoming for the first time in 6 years…so, who knows what the next few months may hold?
Feel free to use this on your website – I hope that anyone who needs reassurance or that extra “oompf” to pick up the phone, to start to make really positive changes in their life and de-clutter, however scary that may be, that they take the opportunity of working with you. You’re a star, and I can’t thank you enough, Caroline.
dr erin, the loss foundation
Room to Think gives you what is says on the tin and SO much more. Working with Caroline Rogers was a lifesaver for me. Caroline takes the weight off your shoulders, helps you break it down and understand it, and then equips you with the ability to go forward whilst managing it better.
The support was the perfect mix of practical and compassionate. I’m so glad to have been told about Room to Think, and I will be telling many others about it. It is a gift to be shared.
Caroline was the enzyme who helped me make difficult changes happen, where I had been ‘stuck’ for years. I felt she understood and appreciated me, the family and where we had come from.
This gave me courage to say goodbye to bricks ‘n’ mortar plus mountains of stuff – and get organised. I think that the sensitive but extremely practical way that Caroline worked with me and my adult family was crucial.
i, a london creative
I called Caroline, to my joy, she said yes she could help me. She has a light upbeat manner that put me at ease on the phone.
I had been like a fish out of water when it came to dealing with my EXCEL systems.
I feel this is a common problem with a lot of creatives.
I am an Artist, designer, doing anything to do with accounts is a chore to say the least!
As a creative herself who is blessed with being able to see numbers as an art in the layout made it palatable to view it in a new light….
With her great encouragement, patience, sense of humour helped me with the ability to complete from start to finish the process and understand it. By keeping me calm and focused (not loosing the plot as I was at the beginning)
I appreciate her adept skills with this matter, she turned it into being managable for me. BIG Thank you x
s, stoke newington
Thank you very much for your help last week. You helped me to stay focused on the task in hand but also patiently listened and responded to my questions and concerns. Through working alongside you and talking as we did so, I learnt more efficient ways of approaching my paperwork and tax records.
The ideas and tips for keeping spaces tidy in different parts of the house, finding practical solutions and questioning habits were also much appreciated.
Just a quick and heartfelt thanks.
It’s that HMRC Tax return time of year
and once more I have easily and quickly got my accounts together using the super EXCEL system that you devised for me. Hiring you was money very well spent and using it gives me pleasure each year!
Caroline was my professional ally when I moved. She made the most stressful day a breeze. She communicated with the movers and helped pack up remaining items the day of my move.
In my new flat she helped me set up the essentials for food and sleep for the first days in my home. She was the friend that looks after you to see you through the stress of moving day.
Caroline is super-efficient which is crucial when the clock is ticking. Her ability to anticipate need and easily adapt to how you do things and to help you in the way that you personally need is what makes her service so outstanding. The added bonus is that she is just a delight to spend time with.
At the end of our first session I felt lighter, clearer, satisfied. I couldn’t wait for the next one. Now I’ve got things I really value and I’m no longer burdened with things I don’t need, don’t want and don’t miss.
It isn’t easy to open your untidy cupboards and drawers to a stranger, but with Caroline it feels right. She doesn’t brand you a hoarder and she isn’t judgemental; instead she helps you make choices, decide what you do want and get rid of what you don’t.
I thoroughly recommend anyone to do this – I felt so much better afterwards. It was something I had meant to do for ages but couldn’t ever find the time and felt so disheartened when I tried to do it alone.
Caroline and I went through all my clothes together last April. I had been ‘meaning’ to do this for ages but kept putting it off. Once I had booked a time with her to come down to Bristol I started feeling better and Caroline’s brilliant way of helping, meant that I actually did it. It was a real opportunity for me to weed out some of the clothes I’ll never wear again. Now my clothes are tidy and I can see what I have and get to them easily. It was fun doing it – there were times when I felt a little embarrassed and uncomfortable going through them all but she was quick to pick that up and work through those feelings with me in a practical but comfortable way.
I re-discovered a number of clothes I had forgotten I had and I gave myself permission to wear and enjoy them. I gave some clothes away, took others to charity shops and have been able to sell some in a local clothing exchange. I had tried to do this before but felt overwhelmed and gave up soon after I started. But with Caroline there it felt OK – it was fun to do it with someone else and her energy and enthusiasm were catching. I thoroughly recommend anyone to do this – I felt so much better afterwards. It was something I had meant to do for ages but couldn’t ever find the time and felt so disheartened when I tried to do it alone. Thank you.
Caroline has this wonderful way to help you to not only become comfortable with but also tackle the things in your life that feel like your worst nightmare or your darkest secret.
Her nonjudgmental attitude from her own life experiences meant that I found myself telling her things that I thought I could never tell anyone. She listened and helped me see that it actually was possible to change. In my case it was something that had big legal and financial implications to my life.
Having got me past my fear and shame she then got me tackling the task at hand. Sometimes she would unblock my stuckness by sitting with me and sharing her wonderful organisational brain, sometimes she would make that call I couldn’t make, or find just right person to help with the job, but mostly she just dealt with my avoidance tactics with humour, love and a cup of tea. She has this wonderful talent of enabling while not creating a sense of dependence on her and what she does. Together we have set up systems and created new habits which mean that I never have to go back to the way I was.
Without her I dread to think where I would be but, maybe more importantly, working with her allowed me to see what was possible not just in an area of my life that had been such a burden, but also to see what is possible in all areas of my life.
a & h (and family), newhaven
We have the foundations of a good working system now. It has radically changed our house and our ways of dealing with the accumulation of stuff that continues…
Caroline came to work with me and my partner on two occasions last year. We were in a ‘funny space’ in our relationship and knew we needed to sort out the 3 storage spaces in our house but were overwhelmed with where to start and how to manage what was going to be a challenging task. As well as knowing we didn’t know where to start, we were also unsure of our joint and individual expectations. We both have different feelings about our stuff and possessions in our family home, which we share with our 2 children. And then there was dealing with our children’s stuff too…. they have their own valid issues about their stuff from when they were younger but no capacity or desire to deal with organising any of it!!
Caroline was great from the start; very clear and boundaried, with lots of warmth and friendliness thrown in. She sat us down and quickly, between the 3 of us, we drew up a plan of what we could realistically achieve in the time we had, set goals for us individually, and as a couple and off we went. We also set break times and times to check in with each other. Caroline worked with us by our side, on a practical level, and was really empowering at helping us make some tricky practical decisions! She was dynamic with her ideas, but never dogmatic.
By the end of the first day we had re-organised 2 different spaces and had also gone to the local tip and charity shop. We arranged another date for her next visit, which was going to be our loft space. It was useful to have a few weeks in between to plan. It also gave us time to talk to the kids about re-organising/culling some of their stuff from their earlier years which was jumbled in with tents, old carpets, and other endless clutter and things from both of our own pasts.
Our second session with Caroline was challenging but equally successful. It was great having met her and therefore knowing it would be easy to set up tasks. In fact, we started just before she got there but it was so good having her with us to stay focused and realistic in our aims. There were some really difficult decisions to make but at no point did we feel pressured or embarrassed by how challenging and, at times, emotional it felt. We ended up with another trip to the dump/ recycling and a list of what we had where in our enormous but beautifully organised loft.
Caroline checked in with us constantly throughout the day, and at the end. She was really, really sensitive to what, to us, were painful decisions to “let things go”. It was like having a therapy session without having to sit down and talk but ending up with a tidy, organised space at the end of it.
We have the foundations of a good working system now. It has radically changed our house and our ways of dealing with the accumulation of “stuff” that continues…
“Caroline, our alliance was so constructive in facilitating me into having the office I want for my creative work and into building the creative productivity of my clients who come here to work.”
– deena gornick, executive coach