It started with a closet shaped like a missile silo. You could buy Elfa brand closet systems at hardware stores that year (1989 or so), so I created a system that let me hang, ABOVE the regular clothes rod, full-length coats in the off season. I hung ads on community bulletin boards (these were pieces of paper, in 3-d locations), and created some closets for other people, getting PAID in the process.
Just over ten years later, I was the mother of two boys, 3 and 6, on my way to a divorce, and feeling bored in a class aimed at rebooting my editing career. It hit me that I was free to do EXACTLY as I pleased, and that meant getting back into the organizing business.
I’ve been called "a high priestess of organization" by the Washington Post and "the queen of napo-member-chat" by the president of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO). The chat is a lively if virtual place that exemplifies all that is good about a distinctly female style of collaboration; it’s a place where members of the 25-year-old NAPO share best practices.
The organizing industry is not 100% female, though, and I married a man who showed up to supervise a move I was organizing for a client. With the help of my wonderful husband and my many wonderful NAPO colleagues, I continue to reinvent my business and myself on an almost daily basis. I now help people solve whatever problems stand between them and their life’s work—sometimes, it’s still a dysfunctional closet.
NEXT IN THE REINVENTION STORY CONTEST: ONE BOOK, T-SHIRT AND TOTE BAG AT A TIME