Cluttered to Organized with Barbie Jo Hatch
February 2, 2021
Barbie Jo is a personal organizer for the busy mom, and can help you get 'quick wins' around the house. Come listen to some tips and tricks from making your home more organized and a place of peace.
Cluttered to Organized with Barbie Jo Hatchst
The Mom Training Podcast with Diana Ballard
Diana: Alright. Hey ladies, welcome to our episode on the Mom Training Podcast. I'm so excited today, I have Barbie Jo with me. She is a mom of five kids. She's a personal organizer of the busy mom, and she teaches simple systems and quick wins around the house. She's totally awesome you can find her on Instagram. She has a lot of programs that can help you declutter your house and make your house more organized.
So, we're so excited to talk to Barbie Jo today, because all of us moms, definitely need help learning how to organize our house. Get rid of the clutter which continues to keep growing around our house no matter how hard to work on it; and continuing to be given stuff, and kids working on things. So, we're excited to have you with us today, Barbie Jo, and welcome to the show.
Barbie Jo: Thank you, so much for having me today. Yeah, I am a personal organizer, and I am a mom of five. So, I’m kind of tried and true. I've been there, done that and I figured out how to simplify motherhood, basically.
Diana: Please, tell us more about that.
Barbie Jo: So, it's kind of funny because I found myself standing in line at a government office one day, after a failed crop. I’m married to a farmer, so I’m a farmer's wife. And I was thinking, you know what, I've got to do something to help out, to help supplement our income, because these years, that are not good harvests really hurt.
So, I was thinking back on the skills that I have and I thought well, maybe I could do this or do that. And I did so many different things and it wasn't until someone asked me, “What could you see yourself doing for the next 10 years?” I said, “Well, organizing.” Like it was a no brainer to me. It's something that I love to do. I have a passion to figure out how to make things better, and just function. And that's when I was like, “Okay,” the light bulb went off and I had that aha moment and I thought, “Okay, let's do it.”
From there, I started organizing anybody's house that would let me. I would just go in and help them out for free in exchange for reviews. And I started kind of building momentum that way and getting credibility and really understanding that, “Yes, this is something I can do and help the world with.”
So, it kind of evolved from there. I started taking on real clients shortly thereafter, and then COVID hit. So, we had to adapt and we had to pivot. And so, I started creating digital products - online courses and such, to still help those busy moms with their organization, just through a different platform. And so, that's where we're at today.
Diana: Oh, that's awesome. Well, I have to ask you like how much time and effort, does it take to go from declutter to organized… For someone that's just starting out. Like maybe they're not wired like you with love for organization. How much time and effort does it take for like a busy mom to go from cluttered to organized?
Barbie Jo: 10 minutes a day. I am all about the simple systems and the quick wins. So, no more than 10 minutes a day. We don't want to overwhelm your current system; we don't want to overwhelm your current schedule, so it's all about keeping it simple. So, I teach quick wins, it’s all about the quick wins.
Diana: What does that exactly look like? Give me an example of like a 10-minute quick win.
Barbie Jo: I’ve created this five-day challenge that's all around the quick wins. And we just tackle small areas in the house. So, we’ll do the nightstand. We'll do the sock drawer. We'll do the mail pile. We tackle just small areas in the house, and it doesn't take you more than 10 minutes. If it takes you over 10 minutes, then stop. Give yourself a break.
But it really shouldn't take you more than 10 minutes to accomplish these simple tasks. And once you set up those areas in your house and you realize how easy it is to keep them that way. And then, it just kind of creates that motivation, that momentum to propel you into other areas of your home.
Diana: That’s awesome. I love that. So, when once you get things kind of decluttered and a little more organized, can people keep their home organized all the time? Is it possible for busy moms, say, with moms with little kids, like what kind of tips do you have with that? Like can they keep it organized all the time?
Barbie Jo: With organization, it's not a one and done, by any means. You will have to maintain it, absolutely. But once you set up the right way, it's a lot easier to maintain. And I also, provide kind of a maintenance plan to help you with that. To help with the upkeep just to help you stay on top of it. So, it doesn't ever get back to where it began.
Yes, things will get done. Yes, the kids will dump out every single toy you own, and that's okay. Life happens. Our homes are meant to be lived in, that's totally fine.
But I was telling a bunch of moms, recently, that don't expect your toddlers to put all of the toys back in the categorized bins or containers. Just be happy that they got them off the floor, if you ask them to clean up the toy room. If they’re just off the floor and in a basket, in general, be happy with it. Lower the expectation, because yes, it will get undone, especially with children and you don't want to be constantly organizing and color coding their toys every single day.
So, with that, it's all about simplicity.
Diana: Okay. I love that. And I just have to ask, a lot of my moms, do have littler kids. And so, can you share maybe one tip with… I know your kids are a little bit older now, but what's something that you did when your kids were younger that really gave you peace, as a mom with five kids? I’m sure there was a lot of stuff everywhere. A lot of things going on all over the place, a lot of business. What's one tip you have for a mom that has like some younger kids?
Barbie Jo: Absolutely, yes. There's a season in life for everything. So, be aware of what season you're in, and lower the expectation. Because I remember, when I was in nursing a baby and I had a toddler on the couch next to me. There were going to be dishes in the sink. There was going to be piles of laundry and that's just the way it was. As long as my baby was fed and my toddler was happy, that's where the expectation was. That was a successful day.
But as far as your home, as you're evolving from season to season, I think it's super important to lead by example. So, as you're picking up toys, have your children help you, have them work alongside you. As you're making your bed, do it together. So, they learn by seeing.
And then I would say, once you move from thing to thing around the house, make sure they get into the habit of putting that thing away before moving on to the next thing. Because I'm sure, while they're little you're doing it with them, basically. So, if they're wanting to play dolls with you, and then decide they want to read books, you need to make it known to them that, “Okay, let's put the dolls away first, before we get the books out.”
So, you're just kind of introducing the systems along the way, as they're growing. And then once they get to their appropriate age, definitely, delegate. Give them some responsibilities.
Diana: So, with your kids being older then, have you found that it's gotten a little easier. Like it's easier now, that your kids kind of grew up with the systems that, it’s like, “Oh, well, this is just what we do. We all help out. We all clean.” It's not like it's a surprise. They've kind of been… I don’t know, raised up to be able to help organize, help clean and keep your house nice. You found that?
Barbie Jo: So, it’s interesting, yes and no. [chuckle] Yes, we know that okay, Saturday is, for example, Saturday's the day we clean the house. But I like to involve my children each week and say, “Okay, let's come up with a list of things that we need to get done. That we've noticed around the house that need to get done. Like, “Hey, the cat just killed a bird on the front porch that needs to get taken care of”, or someone spilled the cat food in the backyard, that needs to be taken care of.
So, we're building the list of things to do together, so they don't feel dumped on. They helped create the list of things that needed to get done and then we let everybody choose two or three things off that list, and that's how we tackle it.
And then I would say, I've also had to become flexible with accepting the methods of organization within each of my children's rooms, especially my teenagers. Because their systems are not the same as mine.
Diana: [chuckle] … Right.
Barbie Jo: So, I’ll go and be like, “Oh, this does not work.” But it does for them. And that's what's important. It has to function for them, and that's all that matters. It might not be beautiful to me, but if it works for them, then I have to let it go. And just realize they're organizing it in their own way.
Diana: I love that. That's really cool. That's good insight into the future, right?
Yeah. See, my dad, when I grew up, would give us 10 jobs every Saturday. I mean since I was little… I don't even know when that started but, it would be like, intense… Like, go clean every baseboard in the house, that'd be one job. Go weed, the front and back yard, it would be one job. I mean we worked and our house was spotless all the time.
And we didn't like it when we grew up. But once we got older, we're like, “Man, thank you for teaching us how to work.”
Barbie Jo: That’s true.
Diana: I mean it's great to be able to… Like it is really important for us to be able to teach our kids. We need to focus on organizing. It's really important to be decluttered and to be able to enjoy your household. So, I love that. I just think it's very important for kids to learn.
Talking to other moms, that their parents never taught them, and they are moms now and they struggle so much because they don't know how to clean. They've never had to organize, how to system and it's really challenging. So, what is one thing, like one thing that you think that you could tell a mom that's maybe new to systems and organizing, like of any season of life… What is one thing that a mom could start today, like involving a system of organizing their house?
Barbie Jo: Okay, perfect. I love that. So, first of all, I would say take notice of your environment. Because what your mind's eye sees, creates that inner turmoil, that inner chaos, or that inner peace. So, a house of order is a house of peace, right? That's the goal.
So, whatever that looks like to you, ultimately, we are trying to create a calm atmosphere within our home. So, if you're already overwhelmed with piles of clutter and you're not sure how to start, I would say focus on the little things.
Start with your kitchen sink. Keeping that kitchen sink empty throughout your day. Start there. And then move on to maybe your bed, make sure you make your bed every single day. Little things like that.
When you wake up every morning, you're already sitting on the edge of your bed, you put your shoes on, why not just turn around and make your bed. Add on that, three minutes to your already morning routine. And it's just those simple little tweaks within your already existing schedule that will help you evolve and make a huge impact.
Diana: Kind of what I'm hearing is that you want to start creating like you say, the simple wins. Like having a nice bed made, makes you want to like clean off the nightstand, makes you want to clean up the floor next to it because it's like, “Oh wow, that looks really nice.” How nice would it look if this little area was clean too?” “Oh wow, now, look at this area, and I cleaned this up.”
So, pretty much you're saying like, “Start simple. Start small. Just start with the things that can be the big win. Like the bed is a big win, because, I mean you walk in your room all the time and to see that beautiful bed you're like, “Wow, I can do this today.” Right?... I love that.
Barbie Jo: Absolutely, yes.
Diana: I love that... Okay, that is super cool. Now, I have to ask you, like if someone wants to hire a professional organizer, what exactly does that entail? How many hours do people come in? What do personal organizer do? How much does it cost? I'd love to know about that, because you're going into people's houses.
Barbie Jo: Yes. So, price differs from state to state. But you're normally, in general, you're going to pay $75 to $150 an hour, to have a professional inside your home. And their job is to basically come and set up your systems for you.
So, they'll bring in the proper storage containers, the shelving that you need. They'll categorize and sort all of your things for you, put it away for you, label them, whatever. And make it function within your home for your lifestyle. And that way, it's just kind of set up for you, so you can just maintain from that day on.
Diana: Okay. And have you ever had to go back and like help someone get back into it? I mean, I have I've had people come help me all the time. Like work on things projects and stuff, and I find myself being like, “Hey, I need you to come back because I’ve got more stuff that needs to be done.” Have you been back into people's houses, like multiple times, to like work on different areas or at the same areas and kind of get back to maintaining areas? Tell me about that.
Barbie Jo: Great question, great question. Surprisingly, no. Once they're set up, they're usually set for good. Unless, I have heard stories where a professional was hired, and the system was set up that did not work at all for that family's lifestyle. And so, they had to just undo it all, and start from scratch.
So, I really try to take into consideration how that family functions, because some people like all of their things out. They'd like to be able to see everything they have. Other people, they want out of sight, out of mind, and contained. So, you really have to take into consideration that sort of thing. But yes, I have been brought back into work in other areas of the homes, but usually once an area has been done, it's pretty much set for good.
Diana: That's awesome. We'll see, that sounds worth it to me [chuckle] to have… I mean, I'm totally always about like, “Dude, just hire the professional; get him in here. Let's just take care of it.” Because it saves you so much time and so much stress and energy, and everything.
Barbie Jo: Right.
Diana: So, that's really cool. And if anyone's in Texas area, you can connect with Barbie Jo and maybe have her come and help organize your house. I love that. That's super cool. I've never had like a professional organizer, but I've had people just come to help me with projects and stuff.
But I'm interested. I'm definitely interested in a professional organizer. That sounds awesome.
Barbie Jo: I've got a great referral for you.
Diana: Okay. Yeah, let's talk after this. That's awesome.
Now, you have that five-day challenge, tell me a little bit more about that and where people can find that challenge.
Barbie Jo: Yeah, this five-day challenge is all about taking your home from chaos to calm. So, it's called the Chaos to Calm Challenge. It's a five-day challenge, and it is no more than 10 minutes a day. That's all you need. Every day, I introduced a new task that we're going to do, and you share with me your before and after pictures. And we just keep moving from area to area for those five days. And then by the end of the challenge you realize how easy it was, and yet how much you accomplished. So, that's the goal of the challenge.
And you can find that challenge at Barbie Joe.com/challenge and sign up to take that anytime.
Diana: And it's a free challenge, right?
Barbie Jo: Yes. That’s free.
Diana: Okay, free challenge. I’ll definitely have in the podcast description, there will be the link and different ways you can contact Barbie Jo, like her Instagram and anything else that she has, or just her regular website.
So, if you're definitely wanting to take this challenge, which I would recommend, go and click on those links and get signed up for that. Totally free - five-day challenge, you got nothing to lose. Just get started in it, start organizing, decluttering that house, it's awesome.
So, Barbie Joe before we let you go. I want you to share with me your favorite area in your house that’s organized.
Barbie Jo: Oh… okay. So, for me it's the pantry, because everybody is in the pantry. Even people that come over to the house to visit, they’re in the pantry. Everybody we have, end up in the pantry.
So, to me, that is, number one, the most important place to have organized but number two, the most… I mean our life revolves around food, right, and the kitchen. So, it needs to function, it needs to showcase everything that you have. So, it's almost like a store, a mini store. So, when people come in, they can see what you have. Your kids can find their snacks easily. You can have an inventory of what you have just at a glance you can see what's going on. Because everything is organized.
Diana: Oh, I love that and totally true. My pantry, actually, I have locked with like a hair tie, so my kids can't even get in it. The two doors together like, “You're not allowed in here because it is my space.” Because it is. You’re right. It is so important to have that organized and it's like a breath of fresh air when you open your pantry, and you're like, “Wow, this looks great.”
So, I love that. I love that… And on your Instagram, I’ve seen that you have some pictures. Is that your pantry that's on there? Beautiful.
Barbie Jo: Yes, my pantry’s on there and other pantries that I've worked on, yeah.
Diana: Oh, beautiful. So, you guys, mamas, definitely go check out Barbie Jo. Connect with her. Follow her on Instagram. Take her five-day challenge, and let's get organized. We all need it. We all need to declutter. It's the beginning of a new year, let's take advantage of that.
And Barbie Jo, thank you so much for joining us today. It was so fun to talk with you.
Barbie Jo: Thanks for having me. Always a pleasure.
Diana: Yeah, and we'll probably have you on again sometime, to teach us a little bit more about organization… Thanks so much and hope you have a great rest of your day.
Barbie Jo: Thanks, you too.