I believe that even in the messiest of spaces there is a pattern, a hidden sense of order amidst the chaos. One of my jobs as a Downsizing Specialist is to help others find their unique pattern and recreate it anew in a smaller space. I begin by asking a series of questions to better understand my client’s life and passions. But in essence, it really boils down to just one question : What is the one possession and one pastime that is the best reflection of who you are?

It’s important to consider both tangible things and intangible experiences. The fact that many of us have a souvenir from a trip or photos of special events on display in our offices is proof that possessions and experiences are strongly linked. As you walk through the rooms in your home, notice what items or type of items you have present in every space you have lived in (other than family photos which we assume are pretty important).

Books, plants, cookware, tools, craft supplies, collections – what is it that speaks about you the most? For me it’s colorful glassware and pottery. I have always loved the shine and feel of a finely crafted piece, and I can remember where I purchased each one. I don’t have many, but there is something beautiful and shiny in every room of my home. And if you know me, you know I love to sing. Singing and performing have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember.

As you begin the downsizing process for yourself or someone else, knowing the answer to the question posed above can bring more meaning, comfort and clarity, and that can mean less stress for everyone.