Living Clutter Free Forever - decluttering tips, professional organizing, minimalist living

Feeling Overwhelmed? How To Apply Intentional Living Principles To Find Your Purpose With Amanda Greaves #91

February 27, 2024 Caroline Thor - Professional Organizer - KonMari® Consultant
Feeling Overwhelmed? How To Apply Intentional Living Principles To Find Your Purpose With Amanda Greaves #91
Living Clutter Free Forever - decluttering tips, professional organizing, minimalist living
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Living Clutter Free Forever - decluttering tips, professional organizing, minimalist living
Feeling Overwhelmed? How To Apply Intentional Living Principles To Find Your Purpose With Amanda Greaves #91
Feb 27, 2024
Caroline Thor - Professional Organizer - KonMari® Consultant

Have you ever felt like things in your life just aren't right, like they're holding you back instead of letting you shine? You're not alone. Listen in as I chat with Amanda Greaves, who went from being an interior designer to a force for change. We'll uncover how she made this incredible transformation and wrote the book 'The Chameleon Diaries'.

Feeling stuck is tough, but don't worry. We've got a plan to help you break free from procrastination and clutter in your mind. Together, we'll find those small wins that make a big difference in moving forward.

But that's not all! We'll also talk about intentional living, exploring how methods like KonMari and mindfulness can bring more joy and purpose to your life. Learn how finding your true 'why' can give you clarity and direction.

If you're ready to shake off the limits of your surroundings and step into a life filled with passion and purpose, then tune in to our conversation. It will leave you feeling inspired and ready to unlock your full potential!

Links from this episode
Join my Facebook group here!

Links for Amanda

I would LOVE to hear from you. Text Message me here.

Thanks for listening! For more organizational motivation, support and free resources:
Join my online membership Clutter Free Collective
Join my podcast Facebook group Living Clutter Free Forever Podcast: KonMari® Inspired Organizing | Facebook
Visit my website www.caroline-thor.com
Come and say 'hi' on Instagram @caro.thor
Follow me on Facebook @carolineorganizer

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Have you ever felt like things in your life just aren't right, like they're holding you back instead of letting you shine? You're not alone. Listen in as I chat with Amanda Greaves, who went from being an interior designer to a force for change. We'll uncover how she made this incredible transformation and wrote the book 'The Chameleon Diaries'.

Feeling stuck is tough, but don't worry. We've got a plan to help you break free from procrastination and clutter in your mind. Together, we'll find those small wins that make a big difference in moving forward.

But that's not all! We'll also talk about intentional living, exploring how methods like KonMari and mindfulness can bring more joy and purpose to your life. Learn how finding your true 'why' can give you clarity and direction.

If you're ready to shake off the limits of your surroundings and step into a life filled with passion and purpose, then tune in to our conversation. It will leave you feeling inspired and ready to unlock your full potential!

Links from this episode
Join my Facebook group here!

Links for Amanda

I would LOVE to hear from you. Text Message me here.

Thanks for listening! For more organizational motivation, support and free resources:
Join my online membership Clutter Free Collective
Join my podcast Facebook group Living Clutter Free Forever Podcast: KonMari® Inspired Organizing | Facebook
Visit my website www.caroline-thor.com
Come and say 'hi' on Instagram @caro.thor
Follow me on Facebook @carolineorganizer

Speaker 1:

Hi there, I'm Caroline Thor, professional organizer, konmari consultant, teacher and mum of three. I started off my life as a mum feeling overwhelmed, disorganized and desperately trying to carve out some time for me amongst the nappies, chaos and clutter. One day, one small book called the Life Changing Magic of Tidying changed everything and I began to learn strategies for making everyday life easier. Today I have the systems in place that means life can throw almost anything at me, and I want to share them with you. If you're an overwhelmed mum struggling to keep it together, then this is the podcast for you. Grab a coffee and settle in for a quick chat with someone who gets your reality. Hello and welcome back to the latest episode of the Living Clutter Free Forever podcast. I hope your week has got off to an amazing start. Thank you so much for joining me today.

Speaker 1:

I'm having a conversation today with Amanda Greaves, who is the author of a new book, the Chameleon Diaries. She's a founding partner of Amanda Greaves and company Interior Design and is also a motivational speaker on self-discovery and personal change. And although Amanda and I recorded this episode quite some time ago now, it's actually this week that this episode is being released, that her book is going to be available to buy for the first time. Now, amanda believes she's figured out the formula on how to shift your mindset and change your life, and for someone like me who works with people to do exactly that to shift your mindset and change your life in terms of decluttering and organizing your home you are going to find this conversation so, so valuable. So, enjoy, amanda, welcome. Thank you so much for joining me today.

Speaker 2:

Caroline, thank you so very much for having me. I really appreciate it.

Speaker 1:

Well, I've already said a bit about you in my introduction, so perhaps could you share a bit about your journey up until this point, so that we have a bit more information.

Speaker 2:

Yes, of course, real quick. When I was 17, I decided I wanted to be an interior designer and fast forward. 30 years later, I've had my own interior design firm for the last 13 years. I studied a design in school. I've been in the industry for 20 years, running my own company for 13. And it got to a certain point that over the last probably three to four years, I started losing my edge. I started losing my passion. I started getting to the point where I just was not excited about going to work anymore and it became a job as opposed to a passion. So I shifted. And that's what my book is about, and that is what I am now confidently speaking on is embracing the change and being able to make a shift in your life to do what it is that you believe is your very next calling or your next step.

Speaker 1:

I think I can totally relate to that, and I think it's so important because I think a lot of people make the mistake of finding themselves in a job but just not being able to imagine what else they could be doing, even if they do have a dream, or it just seems too scary to make that leap because they've got financial burdens and all the rest of it. So that's why I'm really interested to read your book when it comes out, because I think it's going to be really enlightening for a lot of people. I had a massive pivot three years ago when I stopped being a teacher and became a Konmari consultant and at that time everyone was like at your age, having a change of job, and I was like my age life's just beginning.

Speaker 2:

That's exactly what I say. I mean, I'm just, I still have the second half, the full second half of my life. We have longevity in my family, so I'm blessed with that. But I'm 47 years old. I will be 48 on February 29th, so I'm a leap day baby and it got to a point where I thought I don't have to be a designer forever. You didn't have to be a teacher forever, you know, and life is what we make of it. So I'm very excited to be able to offer the options of how I made it from there to here.

Speaker 1:

So you've had this journey towards self discovery. Basically, what would you say have been the three main pivotal points that have got you to this point?

Speaker 2:

Well, I was in a abusive, emotionally abusive relationship for just under three years and there was an overlap because he was in the design and construction industry. There were lots of promises made, both personally and professionally, and it surprisingly pulled me down into this narcissistic abuse cycle that really it really crumbled my psyche. It took my own self worth and it just disappeared for a couple of years and for anybody listening that's ever gone through anything like that, it is a very dramatic push pull roller coaster up and down, in and out, consistent, and it's exhausting. And when I got to the point of understanding that he had been leading a double life the entire time that we were together, I feel that I had been through enough trauma and enough abuse with him. I finally got to the point where I said I've had absolutely my fill of what is going on here and I sought out extreme measures of therapy and coaching and really started digging deep into who I know I am at my core but had gotten lost within that relationship and so many other relationships prior to that Like this was just the final one. I had had practice runs with other people that were similar in narcissistic. It was just an unfortunate pattern that I had created, starting many years ago. So there was that.

Speaker 2:

And literally within 48 hours of understanding that he had been living a double life, I found out that my largest client had decided he didn't want to follow through on any of our contracts. And you know, there's the saying how you do anything is how you do everything is. It was so true I hadn't realized that this particular client was also narcissistic in his approach and abusive in how he had been treating myself and some of my staff, and I just kept glazing over, glazing over, hoping that it would go away or it would get better, and neither one happened until I put my foot down and said you're fired, we're done, and at that point I thought well, you know, I'm kind of at the bottom to a certain degree.

Speaker 2:

I might as well figure this out, and so I started to reassess what was going on. Even more so, and fortunately for me, the 13 years of running my design firm. I've had a woman working with me for 11 of those years and she's younger than me and she wants it, she has the passion, she has the love. We had already started transitioning some of the responsibilities to her, so these two pivotal moments really just excelled it. They excelled the opportunity for me to step aside and for her to come to come in. So those two particularly but I think I'm a big Tony Robbins fan, so I've been to a lot of full integration, you know four, five, six, seven day events, and each one of those has been a pivotal moment for me because of the amount that I have been able to change and learn and embrace more of myself.

Speaker 1:

I'm also a huge fan of Tony Robbins and he was actually in Germany last summer July 2023. And I was. It was quite a distance from where I live and my kids are still quite young and I was really tall and I so wanted to go and I wish I had, I wish.

Speaker 2:

I had. You know it's. For anybody like yourself, it is when the opportunity comes around again, regardless, even if he's just in Eastern Europe in that capacity go. There's something about the virtual events that are just awesome because you're in the comfort of your own home, but as far as being there live, it's a whole different level.

Speaker 1:

I can imagine One question I have for you, just based on what you've just said. So you were, you were at rock bottom. You've got your partner with his narcissistic behavior and that, and then this client as well. Where did you find the strength, do you think, to say that's enough? Now why?

Speaker 2:

at that point it just like the abuse cycles had been building my tolerance. I felt like it was lowering, but my tolerance started to build and I live in a really quaint neighborhood and I have a dog and I will walk with my neighbors and there was a day where one of my neighbors said she just stopped me in the middle of the street and she said you know, amanda, I've heard this story a couple of times, like a dozen times. Are you done yet? Are you done repeating the same thing over and, over and over again?

Speaker 2:

And I looked at her like I had gotten slapped with a frying pan and I was like, huh, yeah, I think I am and it was. You know, everything builds slowly not everything, but a lot of things build slowly and to find the strength and tenacity within myself. Once I hit that point of being like, yeah, I think, I think I've had enough, it was more through the coaching, through the therapies, through honestly eliminating a lot of the other unnecessary distractions in my life, I was able to find the inner strength that has always been there. It was just covered up. You know, it exists in all of us. It's just that we choose to stack so many things on top of it that we even forget that it exists down in here and we pull so much in from the outside, and you know you talk about it in your cluttering aspect we

Speaker 2:

pull so many things in. I think that it's going to feed us and make us feel better, and the more we have, the better we are, and all of that. And when I really started to pull back the layers, it was like peeling an onion, one tiny little layer at a time. Once I got in, it was all there. All of everything that I've ever needed is right here. I just needed people to guide me on how to uncover the nonsense I had been stacking on top of it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I totally agree because we had, within our close family. We had a very difficult situation last year and I surprised myself at the level of strength that I had. I really didn't think that this situation that we were facing, that I would have coped with it as well as I did and keep going and actually build my business through it all. It really has surprised me looking back at what I achieved last year, despite everything that was going on. And how cool of your neighbor to say that to you, because it takes a lot of guts to say something like that to somebody.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and it's interesting because we all go through our own things. So there was always this okay, you go first. No, I've had a really bad day, you go first, and we would do that, and we've both come out of both of the situations we were in. But it is the strength and again, tony will tell us this always we, as human beings, we can surprise ourselves constantly A on how much we actually tolerate in the first place, but B how much stronger we really are. It's like going to the gym and your trainer says okay, you've got one more rep and you're like no, I don't.

Speaker 2:

Well, yeah, you do, yeah, and that's it. It's just, it's digging in, it's finding the strength within yourself and surrounding yourself with the right kinds of people that are going to support your efforts to grow and to be a great.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, definitely For anyone listening who's thinking. Who on earth is Tony Robbins? Not everyone on the planet will know who Tony Robbins is. Would you describe him as a personal development coach? I think yes.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely. I would actually describe Tony probably as the pioneer of personal development.

Speaker 2:

And he is we actually believe it or not share the same birthday. He's just a couple of decades older than I am, but he he's been doing this for 40 years, since he was in his mid-20s, and I think his understanding and his tenacity and his passion on sharing his knowledge with the world is it comes through a hundredfold in his teachings and the energy that he has when he's presenting on stage, online in person, however it may be. So personal development is. I honestly feel that the term personal development was developed because of him.

Speaker 1:

Yes, or life coach. I think when this episode goes out, we'll have to tag him Amanda so that he knows. I think so. Singing his praises in this episode fantastic, okay. So for the person listening who is saying that their home is always stressing them out, that they just never seem to get on top of it, that they have every intention of clearing the clutter, what actionable advice would you give them to declutter the space? Because it comes down to habits, doesn't it, and I know this is something that you are very good with. So what advice can you give people?

Speaker 2:

Well, it's like New Year's resolutions I'm going to lose 15 pounds, okay. Well, how are you going to do that? And it's a matter of setting your sights, saying this is my goal, but genuinely sitting down and taking the time to come up with a strategy. How are you going to reach that goal? And, within each strategy that you're looking at, what is something manageable on a day-to-day basis? Could it be the simplicity of hanging your jacket up instead of just dropping it on the sofa? Could it be?

Speaker 2:

I'm going to take six months to go through my house and I'm planning on doing one drawer a week, depending on how big or how much stuff you have. You know, one shelf a week, and you reward yourself when you're done. It's either you get rid of five things and you allow yourself to buy one more, or no-transcript. For me, it's coming up with the strategy first, and I know that one of my habits is I procrastinate, procrastinate, procrastinate, procrastinate, because I think about it and I'm like, oh my God, it's too much of a mess. I'm just going to shut the door, and sometimes you do that with your own person in your life. Oh God, it's too much of a mess. I'm just going to go to work. I'm just going to go focus on something else over here.

Speaker 2:

And when you come back in and you open that door, because the stuff's not moving on its own, whether it's emotions or things pick one thing up. One thing up, check it out, make sure it's something that you absolutely need, if it's not get rid of it. And it's one small thing at a time. There's an old saying about the aunt didn't eat the elephant all in one sitting, one bite at a time. It's a very small step at a time and there are times when you are stepping through that, decluttering that, strategizing towards reaching your goal. You're going to miss a step here and there it's okay. Breaking habits is really hard, but if you put your mind to it and you stop telling yourself that it's really hard, it can get easier with practice.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, this is exactly what I was discussing this Monday evening, actually, with my membership group, who we meet online once a month in a Zoom call, and I was goal setting with them for the year, exactly that. Don't just say I'm going to do my whole house this year. How are you going to do it? How can we break down even doing the draw into tiny little steps so you can just do 10 minutes at a time so it doesn't feel overwhelming? And I love that you said about celebrating your wins, because it's so important, and the Facebook group for my membership has been on fire this week with people saying what they've done and everyone cheering them on, and it really motivates you then to take that next little mini step, because every little mini step you make ends up leading to completing your goal. And, okay, it might take longer than you anticipated, but you've done it without feeling overwhelmed, which is just gold.

Speaker 2:

Well, and that word overwhelm, through the process of writing my book and going through this, uncovering my strength over the past year, there hasn't been a week that went by in the year of 2023 that I didn't cry, at least once, probably twice, because change is hard. Uncovering what your habits are and the root cause of them. It can be challenging but at the end of the day, like you said, the celebrations, the wins, the feeling of accomplishment, when you know that you've put one step in front of the other, and then the next, and then the next, it's so much more satisfying than being surrounded or being filled with things that no longer serve you.

Speaker 1:

One of the things I've picked up from you so far is that you've navigated really through this journey of life and these pivotal moments, and there must have been times, like you said, when you were at rock bottom, when you felt really stuck, and I know that lots of the people listening to this feel like that about their decluttering and organizing journey as well, or perhaps other things in their lives. They just feel totally stuck. How do we get unstuck? I know you talk about this in your book, so what can we do to get unstuck?

Speaker 2:

It's just like we were talking. Everything is a process, but there will be days where you're sitting in the middle of a pile and you're like I don't even know what to do. I've been sitting in piles of words and piles of journals and piles of emotions and I'm like I can't. It's that overwhelming blanket that just settles in on top of you and you feel like you're crumbling down. Breathe, number one. Don't forget to breathe, because one of the biggest things we do is we're like I can't and you get to a point where you get yourself so upset that sometimes, to get unstuck, I would stop everything that I was doing and realize I'm not stuck. We're not stuck in anything. We are the most amazing species on the planet.

Speaker 2:

We have the ability to use our brains to make a choice, and when we can teach ourselves to relax or just take a breath, I'm very hard on myself. I'm always go, go, go, go, go, go, go go. One of my biggest things was oh, you're not enough, oh, you're way too much, I'm too intense. Whatever it may be, I use that intensity as my driving force, but I have realized over the last year of doing a lot of this work that my intensity level sometimes is a detriment to me, and so we need to be a little bit more compassionate with ourselves. Always hold the bar as high as we possibly can, but have compassion, know where our limitations are, but don't use our limitations as excuses. You know, it's a matter of changing the habits, of saying, oh well, I can't do that, it's too heavy, it's too big, it's too much. Well, you can. And uncovering that, you know, peeling back that overwhelm blanket is. Take a breath and just be easy on yourself, but don't use it as an excuse.

Speaker 1:

Definitely. I think very often as well, when we stop and breathe, as you say, and perhaps just walk away from it and go and just go out for a walk, then have that space, because very often then you get the next step. It comes to you. I find I have my best ideas about what my next step is when I'm out walking my dog. It's just me and the dog out in the fields and I'll be walking along and just processing stuff and then it's like, ah yes, I need to do that to get that to work.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, being able to step away is key, because there are times where it literally it's a matter of just getting up from my chair, walking around the table and sitting back down again, and if that doesn't work, I leave you, go for what.

Speaker 1:

It's like when you're doing a jigsaw puzzle. I always find not that I do do jigsaw, this is very often at all but my daughter is obsessed with doing like 2000 piece jigsaw puzzles and she'll be like I'm looking for this piece and I was like, okay, and then when you keep looking and you can't find it, but if you stand up and walk away and walk around a bit and come back it's very often the first thing you see. Yeah, you can't see for looking sometimes.

Speaker 2:

Well, I had a conversation with a gentleman a few weeks back and we were talking about that whole metaphor of seeing the forest through the trees Right and I'm sure that most of us have heard it in some fashion and he was talking about how we have to look at it from the perspective of a drone, like a drone, and so we can be in the middle of the forest with the remote control, but we have to put a set of different lenses on so we can see from the perspective of the drone, and if we can use that remote to pull the drone up, we can eventually then see where our new navigating path can be. We can pull our perspective out so far with the remote, with our choices to stay where we know we need to, but expand our vision so we can understand the right path to get to where we want to be.

Speaker 2:

And so it was just. I mean, I have this whole meme Cartoon concept in my mind of I'm gonna put it together, but it's just understanding the bigger picture and taking a breath and knowing that it is one step.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and sometimes as well, asking someone else their advice, like what do you think I should do in this situation? Or getting someone that knows what they're doing in that situation in to support you, or asking a family member to come and support you in whatever it is you're doing. And that's very often helpful as well, because it gives you a different perspective that you've then not previously thought about, which allows you then to take that next step. Yeah, definitely, definitely. So I have got a word for this year which is intentional.

Speaker 1:

Last year, I was being because of everything that was going on at home. I was being incredibly reactive in everything I did. So this year, I'm trying to be very, very intentional, and one of the main concepts of the Konmari method, which is the one I use for decluttering and organizing, is that we're finding things that spark joy in our lives. We're visualizing our ideal lifestyle, what is going to bring us joy in our everyday life, and then we're creating a home that supports that vision, so that we're choosing things that bring us joy within our home. So could you share some advice from your perspective on discovering joy and fostering intentionality in our lives, because I know this is something you feel very strongly about.

Speaker 2:

So discovering joy and fostering intentionality. It is decluttering our lives, whether it's things or emotions. I feel it opens up opportunities for us to be able to receive so many more things and so finding the joy in things. It could be the simplicity of taking a walk with my dog and having him smell the flowers and I'm too damn busy listening to a podcast or I'm on the phone or something and he yanks me back and I think, oh, what's going on down there? And just acknowledging the very small moments. The very small moments and for all of you that have a dog, god bless you, because I think they're amazing cats as well, but pets in general.

Speaker 2:

And I've given myself the time only because I have decluttered, I have taken away a lot of the distractions. I have intentionally said my primary focus is this, and if this other thing isn't necessarily contributing or adding to the growth or making me happy, well, is it something that I genuinely need right now? Do I need to deal with it right now? Making a list of all the responsibilities I had in my design, firm, 50% of them I could have passed on, delegate, delete, and when I started opening up space for myself intentionally, when I intentionally started to get rid of some of the unnecessary elements in my life. It allowed more beautiful things to come in. It allowed that joy to start to foster and the intentional aspect, you throw it out to the universe. I want to be happier. I want more joy in my life. I would really love to not have so many distractions. Yeah, and then going back to what we were talking about setting the goal, writing out a strategy what are all those distractions? How can you make a little bit more space for yourself?

Speaker 1:

I love that answer, amanda, and I actually was talking to my mum on the phone yesterday and she said well, what have you been up to? And I said I have been sat in my winter garden with the door open to the garden and the rabbits have been hopping in and out and I've just been sitting there enjoying, watching them and enjoying the fact that they want to come and see me and that they can, and that they've got all this space and that we've created this and we've got a ridiculous number of pets. So I totally get you loving the dog and the cat. Last year I would not have taken the time out of my day to do that, and this is where my being intentional this year is really making me think. Oh, what brings me joy? What do I want to do with my day? I want to spend 10 minutes sat on the floor. In the winter it's a bit cold, I have to say, with the back door open.

Speaker 1:

It was minus five outside yesterday, but the yeah, having some time with the rabbits because I enjoy that.

Speaker 2:

And it's finding those things that do bring you joy, whether it's a thing, an act, an experience or something. When I started my business, you know, a decade ago, all of a sudden, one day there was snow on the ground, Literally. All of a sudden there was snow on the ground one day and I thought to myself, oh my God, I missed fall. I missed an entire season because I was so saturated, I was pulled in so many directions, and the day that I realized that I had missed an entire season was the day that I was like I think I'm a little busy. I'm like I'm too busy for my own good right now.

Speaker 2:

And I mean I have been working in a semi materialistic world for 20 something years. You know, interior design is all about the stuff that you can put around you, and we have eye and residential clients. You know there is an extreme level of importance of what our interior space does and how it does assist in our being able to live in the environments that we do, and all of that. But beyond the materialistic elements of it, I started to realize I was focused on the things that weren't saturating my soul with joy and I was just going through the motions, and so every once in a while you just have a random wake up call and it's like, oh, I'm not interested in that anymore and you move on.

Speaker 1:

One thing that I mentioned earlier was that when we are commuring our homes, we're really trying to focus in on how we want our ideal lifestyle to be, and that, for me, comes back down to our why. Why are we doing this and I know why is something that really resonates with you. So how can individuals start uncovering their personal why and why do you think it's pivotal for the journeys that we're going on?

Speaker 2:

How can we start uncovering? It is everything that we've just been saying. I didn't know exactly what my why was for such a long time. I thought, you know there's so many layers to this, caroline, so many layers to this. So I started to understand what my why was. When I realized that I wasn't being fulfilled and I wasn't finding joy in the career choice that I had made decades ago, I thought that staying consistent, following through on that particular dream, was going to bring me joy.

Speaker 2:

Because my parents worked hard. Their parents worked hard. They made a decision and I'm talking about a lot of the generations before us. There weren't pivotal moments in their lives where they said I don't wanna be a teacher anymore, I'm gonna go organize closets. I don't wanna run a business, I don't wanna run this business anymore, I'm gonna go start another one. They didn't do that. So that type of ingrained I'm gonna call it a limiting belief or lack of courage to go and, just God, try something new. Those types of things they weren't passed down to us. We are new generations that are starting to uncover what hits us hard. You know what hits closer to our hearts, I was taught you get good grades in high school.

Speaker 2:

You go to college. When you're out of college, you get a good job so you can pay off your student loans. And then, once you do that, you keep going and you keep working, and I'm one of the first people that has started a business out of my family. And they all said, oh my God, you're crazy. You know? Like what do you mean? This is the worst economy ever. This was in 2010.

Speaker 2:

And I thought, well, everybody's gonna reinvent themselves at some point in time. But for me, most recently, when I started to realize I'm not happy in my business, this has become a job, not a career choice. I'm repeating the same mistakes with every person that I've been dating for years. Why am I attracting jerks? Yeah, and you know, the coaching and the therapy is massively helpful for me. And therapy isn't a you know, it's not just a buzzword anymore. I remember 20, 30 years ago I said, oh, mom, can I go see a therapist? She's like there's nothing wrong with you, you're fine, but I wasn't you know, and so now, you know, everybody I know has a therapist somewhere and it's.

Speaker 2:

I feel that over the last 10 to 20 years, so many different things have been uncovered for us to be able to have faith in ourselves, to make that pivot point, to turn around and say I can't do this anymore. I need to understand what's going to bring me joy, and so the digging in that I did of the therapies and the coaching, and for me the writing exercises, were unbelievably cathartic. But it was a matter of asking the right questions and then asking better questions and then answering the damn questions. You can ask yourself all the questions in the world, but you actually have to sit down and give yourself the time to say what do I really really, really really want? Or what happened in my life One, two, a dozen different things that, god, I would never want to see anybody else go through that. And that's where things started to resonate with me, when I was talking with a couple of people and they started asking me these very, very pointed questions. And my biggest, biggest, biggest pointed question was I wanted to have a family, I wanted to have children, and my second husband, after we got married, said he did not want them and it changed everything.

Speaker 2:

I kind of went up. You know things happened. Clearly I'm not married any longer, but I started chasing things that didn't suit me. But I was on a mission. I wanted to find somebody that I could be a partner. But I hadn't healed what was going on inside and I uncovered my why when somebody said what's the one major thing you wish you could go back and do? And I said I wish I could have had that conversation before we got married and I wish I could have done this work when I was in my 30s, so at the age of 47, I could have said here, I have this family and so we're not with like.

Speaker 2:

And then I was a disaster. For two days. I was crying, you know I was. Finally I was like oh my God, I finally figured it out.

Speaker 2:

And when that happened, my mission now like by writing this book, by getting all of my messy, vulnerable stories in black, white and gray on paper, if I can touch the lives of one, maybe two women that are in a position right now where they want a family and they are stuck in a relationship they're with somebody that doesn't have the same types of values they are, they're totally overworked and undervalued, whatever it may be, to talk with them and to explain to them what happened to me, in the hopes that they don't follow that same path, they don't take that same journey, and they can learn from my mistakes, my lack of using my voice, so they can follow through on their dreams of having a family or starting a business, or traveling the world or what it may be. But it's my why I started to become. I have a mission to connect with as many people that have been in my position before and tell them that there's a different path, there's a different way that you can go.

Speaker 1:

And that's a phenomenal. Why, absolutely phenomenal? Okay, yeah, I am excited to hear more about your book, so could you share some more about the Chameleon Diaries and its core message, particularly your beliefs that events happen for us, not to us?

Speaker 2:

I love this. So the Chameleon Diaries. I was a people pleaser for a long time, which was evident in all of my relationships, not while I was going through them, but when I started to look at them again. Hence the Chameleon aspect, and the subtitle is designing a life worth changing for. And so life happens for us. I believe that there is a divine plan. We are all set on some level of a journey, whether we like it, know it, love it, hate it, are completely oblivious to it or not. I do believe that there is a plan for us all, and I'm perceiving my second half of my life as the best half of my life because of everything that I've learned in the last 47 years.

Speaker 2:

And you can be stuck in traffic. Why am I stuck in this traffic? Well, maybe if you had gotten out of the house 30 seconds earlier, you could have been in that accident. Or maybe you're stuck in traffic because you're not meant to see something or bump into somebody, or it's. There's been movies made about it.

Speaker 2:

Events happen for us good, bad, ugly and indifferent.

Speaker 2:

So we have opportunities to learn and, like we said earlier in the episode, the more we have the ability to pull back that blanket of overwhelm, to start digging in and peeling back the layers of the onion and throwing the dirt, getting rid of the distractions and all of those things.

Speaker 2:

It allows more space and grace in our emotions and in our homes to allow the messages in and a lot of these lessons that I've learned over the course of my life. I didn't actually learn them, they didn't actually appear to me until recently because I was just too damn busy to notice a season or a reason or anything else that goes along with those two things a lifetime, whatever it may be. And there's the acknowledgement section of my book actually thanks everybody that I've been with, to past husbands, boyfriends and lovers. Thank you, whether it's good, bad, ugly or indifferent. I wish love for you. But because of my experiences with all of those people, I know how much I can love, I know what I am capable of doing and I'm just so excited for the next round when that person, my person, arrives. And so all that nonsense happened for me because it's gonna be amazing on the other side.

Speaker 1:

And the first amazing thing, or the nearest amazing thing, is going to be your book actually coming out being on sale. So when can we expect that Cause I need to get a copy.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I'll send you one anyway, but it's scheduled to come out mid to late February. My current publication date is February 29th, which is leap day, and that's it. It'll be available on all of the primary larger like Amazon, barnes, noble Books and Million those types of locations. I will be selling it through my website as well and ideally I'm going to get into as many mom and pop corner store bookstores as I possibly can, nationally, internationally, because I'm a small business owner, I'm going to can remain a small business owner with this new venture of mine and I believe that we are what makes the world go round and there's so much value in supporting each other with going to the mom and pops and you know, the small brick and mortar's that are just doing their day to day.

Speaker 1:

So, and if people want to find out more about you, where can they go to?

Speaker 2:

My website, which is amandagreevescom, and that is spelled A-M-A-N-D-A-G-R-E-E-A-V-E-S, isn't Sam dot com.

Speaker 1:

Perfect. I will put the link in the show notes and also the name of the book will be in the show notes anyway, so that people can go to wherever they buy their books and ask for it or order it or whatever they do, or get it on their Kindle or whatever. Yeah, yeah.

Speaker 2:

So the Kindle's, all of that, yes, it's going to be available. I will be doing an Audible version of it. I don't know if that's going to be ready by the end of February, but it'll be out springtime at the latest, you know April 1st. I'll be definitely getting the Audible.

Speaker 1:

I am so happy to hear that because I am an Audible girl I have I'm always. When I'm driving the kids to all their stuff, I have my books playing. I've got some books, so I've got some books.

Speaker 2:

It's a whole industry that is. It's really amazing. I mean, I used to do a lot of driving up and down. I'd be in the car for two to four hours a day and I would burn through Brené Brown, jay Shetty, you know, roy Vaden all of the books of all of the people that I'm like. Oh, you're great, you know listening to them all.

Speaker 1:

So we have the same book list, Amanda. That's fantastic. I drove to France and back this summer listening to Jay Shetty think like a month.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, yeah, and I listened.

Speaker 2:

I've had Brené Brown's Atlas of the Heart. I was in Portugal and Switzerland this past September, and so I read it on the plane. Zuh Perfect.

Speaker 1:

It was great, yeah, oh, amanda is being a joy to use that word again, but it really has been talking to you today. Thank you so much for your time and I wish you every success with your book. You're the first person to come on my podcast to promote a book, so I am honored to have you as the first. Oh.

Speaker 2:

Caroline, thank you, this is wonderful. I really appreciate that.

Speaker 1:

Thank you so much and, who knows, perhaps we'll have you back at some point in the future.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and you know my. I am located in Boston, massachusetts, but my goal is international. So, like I said, if there are bookstores in Germany that have the American English version of you know self-help and memoir sections, I'll be there.

Speaker 1:

I hope to be Fantastic. I hope to meet you at some point then. Absolutely. Thank you, Amanda. Thank you, Caroline. Well, there you have it. I hope you love listening to that conversation as much as I enjoyed having it. It was so interesting to hear Amanda's take on things such as habits and finding joy and your why all these things that I'm talking about all the time. So I can't wait to get hold of a copy of her book and have a read, because I think it's just going to be exceptional.

Speaker 1:

As I said before when I was talking to Amanda, all the links from this episode are in the show notes, and one thing I can't not mention today is that on February, the 29th, the founding members price for my membership, Clutter Free Collective, is coming to an end. So if you want to get in at the founding members price and join our amazing community, then please, please, click the link in the show notes. We would love to have you join us and see you there. You can join for one month. You're not tied in for any longer than that if you don't want to be, but everyone keeps coming back because we're having such a great time together. So until next time.

Speaker 1:

If you've enjoyed this episode. Please send the link to a friend you know would appreciate it. Subscribe and leave a review. I look forward to bringing you more organizing tips next time, but if you can't wait until then, you can go to my website or find me on Instagram, at carrowthor, or on Facebook at Caroline Organiser. Thanks for listening and I look forward to guiding you on your journey to find your clutter-free ever after.

Embracing Change and Self-Discovery
Overcoming Procrastination and Feeling Stuck
Fostering Joy and Intentionality
Uncovering Joy and Finding Purpose
Designing a Life
Clutter-Free Organizing Tips