Cassie Thompson with her family. Photo credit: Leigh Gough Photography

Meet Cassie Thompson, wife, mother and entrepreneur. She’s a professional organizer and the founder of Serene Spaces Professional Organizing and Consulting, LLC. Cassie graciously shares her journey into the world of organization and offers practical advice for creating and maintaining an organized space.

Q: Tell us a little about your start as an organizer.

A: When my oldest son was a year old, I was navigating a new season of life, juggling all the things that come with being a new parent. I’d spent many years working in the mental health field, but I was looking for something more flexible for my growing family. After completing some large-scale organizing projects for my employer and organizing spaces for friends and family, I grew confident that I could turn this hobby into a career. Serene Spaces grew from a part-time side hustle into a full-time career, and I now have an amazing team of organizers serving the greater St. Augustine, Florida, area.

Q: A lot of parents want to get our kids organized, but don’t know where to start. What do you recommend?

A: We recommend involving and working with your child to give them more control over their spaces but still setting some boundaries and realistic expectations. A big piece of staying organized is not only managing the items currently inside our homes but also being mindful of what we bring into our spaces. In my home, the collection of Nerf items and sports equipment can get overwhelming if left unchecked! Taking time to sit with our child and point out that, “Hey, this toy is broken” or “How long has it been since you played with this?” helps involve them in the process and get those gears of mindfulness turning early. Start small and feel the impact of a small change to gain momentum. We never want to force a child to part with a toy or declutter behind their back; that could make it harder for them to part with items down the road. Begin with one bin of items that needs to be sorted and put away. Remember, kids’ attention spans are limited, so attempting to take on a whole room can be overwhelming and daunting for a little one.

Q: With school schedules, extracurricular activities and work commitments, how do you manage your family calendar to ensure everyone stays on track?

A: Everyone in the family has their own Google Calendar, which I currently manage. Each of these calendars includes their own events and activities. We have a Team Thompson calendar for activities that aren’t related to a specific person but to the whole family. I layer all of these calendars so I can see events from all of the calendars at a glance. I used to print the monthly calendar for my boys, but we recently started using the Skylight Calendar, which is a digital display that syncs with our Google calendars so everyone can check it and know what the day looks like. We also have a weekly family meeting to keep everyone on the same page while also allowing everyone to give input on how the week will look.

Q: We all have those days when chaos seems inevitable. What’s your go-to quick-fix solution for restoring order when things get a bit chaotic at home?

A: Sometimes, it is as simple as sitting down, taking a deep breath and giving yourself a reset. Write down all of the things you need to complete as a brain dump, prioritize the items and focus on the top three. Put off anything that can wait and offer yourself grace to do what you can. I also love to set a timer for 10–15 min and work on moving something forward. Don’t stop until the timer goes off. Then, switch to a new task, set another timer and repeat. Small steps are still progress, and done is better than perfect!

Q: For moms who dream of starting their own business, what’s your key piece of advice based on your own journey and experiences?

A: Buckle up; it’s a ride! It has been an evolution for over 10 years with many highs and lows. I was fortunate to have the flexibility to begin building my business slowly. This helped ensure that it fit within our family priorities first. One piece of advice I would offer is to make sure your business works for you and you are not working for it. It can be helpful to create boundaries to ensure that your ultimate goals for your business as well as your goals for your personal life continue to be your priority.

Q: Any final words of wisdom?

A: If you feel overwhelmed in your spaces or feel you can’t get ahead, give yourself grace. Take some photos of your space and see it from a different angle. Set some goals for your spaces and start small. There is hope! Many times, having a non-judgemental friend or family member come over to be your accountability partner can be very helpful. It is ok to ask for help. We can’t be expected to do it all.


You may also like: