Lenore Skenazy: Lessons from a Shoebox philosopher

May 22, 2016 - storage organizer


Posted: Sunday, May 22, 2016 12:00 am

Lenore Skenazy: Lessons from a Shoebox philosopher

Associated Press |


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Most people relocating to Manhattan don’t design to live in a mansion. But conjunction are they fervent to live in an unit a distance of a 2001 Honda Accord.

That’s accurately what Felice Cohen did, for 4 years. Though she recently changed into a 490-square-foot studio — “There’s tons of space!” — she squeezed all she schooled about appreciating a little things into a new book, “90 Lessons for Living Large in 90 Square Feet (…or more).”

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    “I wanted to leave my full-time crazy bustling job,” says Cohen, now 45, explaining her microhousing decision. “And we wanted to finish essay my initial book, ‘What Papa Told Me.’ It’s about my grandfather, a Holocaust survivor.” She also wanted adequate time to travel, float her bike and play tennis. (Who doesn’t?) The locate was: She didn’t wish to leave a city to do it.

    So she changed into a place that totalled 12-by-7.5 feet and paid a pittance-by-New-York-standards lease of $700 a month. That meant she didn’t have to work full time to means it.

    “My father was a failure attorney,” Cohen pronounced in a phone interview. She grew adult meaningful not to spend what she didn’t have. But she still grew adult a normal American consumer, that meant that before she changed into a little apartment, she packaged adult 77 boxes and put them into storage.

    So, what was her little place like? It’s probable you’ve indeed seen it. A video “tour” of Cohen’s unit has garnered some-more than 11 million views on YouTube. On it, we see that she didn’t have a kitchen, though she did have a fridge, a prohibited pot and a toaster oven. She had a loft bed, of march — in New York, when we need space, a usually place to go is up. And she had a desk, a comfy reading chair, and a lavatory that looks totally normal (to a New Yorker). Come to consider of it, my father and we lived in about 400 block feet for a few years and it didn’t seem eccentric either.

    Which is precisely Cohen’s point: “We can ALL live but half of what we own. We have closets full of garments we hardly wear. We save something for ‘just in case,’ and only in box never comes. People will say, ‘I wish to save this in box we remove weight.’ we contend by a time that fits again, it’s going to be out of style.” The solution? Edit, edit, edit.

    It should come as no warn that Cohen’s other pursuit is a veteran organizer. If we can’t means her $150 an hour services, she’s got a integrate of good suggestions: Go by only one territory during a time — your kitchen cabinets, sock collection, whatever. Set a timer for 20 or 30 minutes, so we don’t feel overwhelmed. And remember, we don’t have to toss a things we love. Give them to a friend, or charity. Get some compensation from assisting someone else. What comes around, goes around.

    That’s what happened to Cohen. After she helped her grandfather tell his life story, her grandfather helped her. “He said, ‘Enough already! Buy a place! You lived in a shoebox to write about my life. Now make certain we buy some good seat and suffer your life.’ ” He gave her a down remuneration for a new studio.

    By a time Cohen changed in, she had gotten absolved of those 77 boxes in storage. It’s expected many of us could get absolved of whatever we’re storing, too. “It’s about vital vast on your possess terms,” summed adult Cohen. “Not being stressed to compensate bills for things we don’t even use.”

    Maybe freedom’s only another word for zero left to store.

    © 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This element might not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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