October 2017
The Anticrastination Tip Sheet
From Rita Emmett

Author of The Procrastinator's Handbook and
The Clutter-Busting Handbook


Clutter is a weight that has built on top of you so gradually, you don’t even realize anymore that it is holding you down. ~~ Mary Johanson 

THINGS seldom have real value. The memoires left behind do.

Message from Rita


My cousin Mike died at a young age, leaving no family except me. If you have never been through this, you need to be warned of the emotions and tough decisions trying to figure out what to do with all the stuff someone has accumulated in his lifetime.
Mike’s house was neat and clean, he was not a Pack Rat, but as his best friend, Harry, and I went through his garage, basement, workshop and attic, we constantly asked, "What was he thinking?"

As we came across 8 coffee cans filled with rusty, bent nails that could not possibly be used, we said, "What was he thinking?"
As we came across TWELVE YEARS WORTH of National Geographics, we said, "What was he thinking?"
As we came across 42 coffee mugs (a whole cabinet full) and a drawer overflowing with those little packets of soy sauce that comes with take-out, we said, "What was he thinking?"

There's the question of the day: Look at what is filling up your house, your office, your life, and ask "What the heck am I thinking by saving this?" Do you really want clutter to be your legacy?

Then we discovered it’s not hard tossing the worthless items but Where …. How … do we decide what to do with all his good stuff?

A friend was recently talking about how painful and frustrating it is to try to decide what to do with all that his mother-in-law left behind. Who wants and gets her good things and is it OK to get rid of some of the beautiful items she loved and had acquired during her 89 years --- but now nobody wants.

In addition, he explained that she was very organized and had all her savings and everything in place, but no info how to contact people important to the process and or passwords to her important documents.

Yes, this topic is hard to think about and hard to talk about, but it’s a conversation that needs to be started. There are no simple answers to all this, but I’d love to hear from you if you or your family has come up with ways to help people know what to do with “stuff” left behind by a loved one who has passed away and how to access all the important papers, etc. It seems to me that the more thought that’s given to this question ahead of time, the easier it will be for family and friends.

Here is an email from good friends in San Diego, Jean and Roy. They seem to have given this a GREAT DEAL of thought
Dear Rita,

We recently brought up-to-date our trust, wills, power of attorney, etc. We have it in a 3-ring binder with a Table of Contents. In the front pocket of the notebook we have placed a sheet titled “Suggested Distribution of Items Upon Death of Both Parties.” We have included a selection of items for our family members. We feel very good about having done this and especially since it is only a suggestion.

We love all your help on getting rid of clutter and we are doing so much better!
Jean & Roy

One more thought:
Inspired by Jean’s email and several conversations lately about handling the estate of loved ones, I decided to start collecting all our important info and put it into one place. So I bought a book sub-titled “Important Information about My Belongings, Business Affairs and Wishes”.

The title is: “I’m Dead. Now What?”
The title might not appeal to many of you but my family will feel it’s typical of me.

Looking forward to hearing from you if you have a story – could be good or bad – that you think your fellow readers would find helpful.



EMMETT’S LAW: The dread of doing a task uses up more time and energy than doing the task itself.

Come join us for a class and learn more about breaking the procrastination habit.

It’s taught by phone.
No computer needed.
Dial the “magic” number, join several other people taking the class and I’ll be talking about ideas to help you stop procrastinating. .

Tuesday, August 22
1:00 PM Central time
Cost: FREE.
To get the “magic” phone number to call for the class that day, register ahead of time at
888-600-2560   or
email:  teltopics@matherlifeways.com

Please share this Tip Sheet with 2 or 3 friends who would be interested. And feel free to use this message in your blog or newsletter, as long as you include my bio and contact info:

Rita Emmett
Author of The Procrastinator's Handbook,
The Clutter-Busting Handbook and
Manage Your Time to Reduce Your Stress: A Handbook for the Overworked, Overscheduled, and Overwhelmed
Come join our Clutter Busting Community on FB:


This is So much time, so little to do. Scratch that, reverse it! ~~ Willie Wonka