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on January 30, 2007
An upbeat book that goes with the happy house on the cover. The book is organized in three sections: reasons for rightsizing, rightsizing in seven simple steps, and enjoying the results of your rightsizing. The interviews with the people that are preparing to or have already moved are all interesting. However, both the title and the information provided on the back cover of this book are a bit misleading. The subtitle is 'Simplifying Your Surroundings While Keeping What Matters Most.' The reviews on the back also indicate the book is about simplifying and organizing. While a great deal of the information is applicable, the primary focus is on 'rightsizing' in preparation for a move to a smaller home. The information provided is excellent and while a couple of the families mentioned did add on to their current home, there isn't as much useful information for those of us whose goal is 'rightsizing and simplifying' right where we are. If your primary interest is in simplifying you life and gaining more control over clutter, you may want to borrow a copy first to ensure you will find this book helpful. If, however, you have a move planned in the near future, this is an excellent book for you as it walks you through the process making every effort to ensure a smooth transition.
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on February 25, 2007
I am about halfway through this and all

I can say is: what an annoying book.

Apparently the author is/ was a radio commentator

and journalist. Perhaps the commentator

background gave her the mistaken idea that

she needs to "push" every few words in writing,

the way radio and TV announcers "push"

every few words in their oral reporting.

This results in a book that is loaded with

italics - even in sentences needing no particular


Moreover, her prose is wordy beyond belief..

and she belabors the simplest point.

Here's an excerpt (I will use ALL CAPS

when she used ITALICS):

"So often in my experience with rightsizers I have observed that living with the new reality [of having downsized] sometimes has the effect of eventually reordering a few of their original priorities. The trick here is to grant any partner the dignity to come to his or her own conclusions as to the wisest use of space. If rightsizers can learn to ACCEPT things as they are at the moment and assume that reason will ultimately outseigh nostalgia or angst or a need to "run the show," the person can still save fce if alter ys says "You know, I think I'm ready to donate SOME of those magazines to the library" and isn't made to feel like he's eating crow. The ultimate test will be if both spouses are able to divest themsevles of many of their OTHER possessions that aren't as highly charged. Can they accept the basic premise that psychotherapist and professoinal organizer Cindy Glovinsky proclaims in her book Making Peace with the Things in your Life: "None of us owns a single, solitary thing permanently"? In other words, our possession flow through our lives on a TEMPORARY[italics] basis, on their way to somewhere else after we fall off the perch..." [catmom comment: Yep---definitely got the point---possessions

are temporary... once we're dead, we don't own

them anymore.]

As this excerpt shows, the writing is cluttered,

wordy, full of cliches, repetitive -in short,

distracting. In addition, as one reviewer

has already noted, the book's anecdotes tend

to focus on wealthy people who "rightsized" by selling

huge expensive homes, and using

the money to purchase multiple smaller

homes, French

barges, etc.

The book is pretty useless for the average person trying to figure out how to declutter and


I keep hoping there are at least a few practical

tips buried in this morass of verbiage but am

wondering whether I can really stomach reading

the rest of this.
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on February 24, 2007
As any number of other people today, I've bought into the simplify your life, declutter your home craze. "Rightsizing Your Life" sounded different than the usual advice out there. The problem is that it IS totally different! This book is not for packrats or substandard housewives. This book is for people who are choosing to move from 5400 sq. ft. homes to barges off the French coast with pied-a-terres in San Francisco. Your usual hoarder of cardboard boxes and broken lamps doesn't usually have the opportunity to add 800 sq. ft. additions to their homes in order to accomodate visiting children and grandchildren. Somehow I thought most people looking to declutter were doing it in order to live more comfortably in the space they have. I'm sure this book will be useful to a great many people, but I was looking for a book to help me discard those old Christmas carolers I no longer put out.
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on April 4, 2007
Being a bit ahead of teh baby boomers I went through this process a few years ago.

At the beginning of the process I had: a big suburban house and a wife; a car and a truck; a boy and a girl; a dog and a cat. Then the pets died, the children moved on to their own lives, wife wanted a divorce and the car. Sold the big house. Got rid of an incredible amount of junk, but still have more stuff than I need. Bought a quite small house one quarter the size.

I wish I had had this guide at the time. Although I did most of what she says, it took me a lot of thinking to do what she's already thought about. And she pointed out that there were a few things that I wish I'd done differently. The real key is exactly as she says is 'keeping what matters most,' and if I had had her advice, I'd have kept a few other things, gotten rid of some of the things I kept.

Well thought out, and worth the small cost.
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on January 4, 2007
The author does a great job of making the process a lot easier than it would be otherwise. One of the things that's tough about paring down your possessions is that you care about a lot of the stuff you've hauled around for years; or your husband does; or your kids do. This book shows you how to deal with all that. Plus it's upbeat. A few pages in, you realize that you really will feel better about not just your home but your life when you rightsize. The anecdotes are fun, too! I recommend it, for people of any age.
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on January 20, 2007
My husband and I were going through our own move into smaller quarters when I read Rightsizing. What a life saver, not to mention a marriage saver! Ciji Ware has come up with a logical, rational, yet surprisingly personal way of deciding whether to keep or toss clothes, books, memorabilia, etc. Instead of fighting with my husband over whether we had the space in our new house for his old magazines and my old pairs of shoes, we took Ciji's advice and came up with an actual PLAN. Now we've Rightsized and we don't even miss the stuff we got rid of. (Well, okay. My husband misses his magazines a little.) A must read!
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on March 9, 2007
Ciji Ware uniquely enhances the field of how-to books on life change by walking you through the anxiety and, yes, mournfulness that are natural consequences of simplifying (editing, recycling, tossing out!)so you can move into a more free, optional frame of mind -- whether that happens when you're 50, 60 or 70. This woman understands "baggage" -- and how we too often define ourselves by what we have, rather than seeing how it weighs us down, turning us into janitors of junk, preventing larkiness and creating expense (note today's boom in rental storage - how often will you visit your stuff?). "Rightsizing", says Ware, may be upsizing your space, but why not use the occasion to reflect on what you really love and want to be surrounded by? Lists sources for charitable recycling & swaps, as w/as sales, of books, furniture, cars, hard goods. Spirited but realistic.
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on January 22, 2007
Ciji Ware's reporting background shines in this thoroughly researched guidebook about finding a living space tailored to your specific needs. Packed with no-nonsense advice and attention to detail, it covers every imaginable area related to changing addresses, whether you're going upscale or downsizing to a condo or apartment. Ware walks you every step of the way, from identifying a space meeting your parcicular needs to tossing items you thought you couldn't live without. What could be boring material is spiced by real-life anecdotes (some funny, some horrifying) from people who've made this life-altering change. An expecially helpful sction is the "Rightsizing Resource Directory" with an invaluable list of books, websites and organizations to get you on the right track. If you want to dodge headaches in your next move, "Rightsizing" is seriously good medicine.
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on January 20, 2007
Congratulations to Ciji Ware for simplifying and explaining a most confusing process -- one I have gone through once, not well, and one we all have to go through and endure at some time! She makes it intelligent and fun!! Friends of mine "rightsize" about every five years-- more power to them-- but for me it was arduous the first time, and I'm glad to have Ms. Ware's guide for the next time.
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on January 12, 2007
Ciji Ware's insight and understanding of the incredibly emotional process of paring down one's lifetime of accumulaton and the logical and systematic way she instructs one to overcome those emotions and accomplish the task is brilliant and has been a huge help at the difficult crossroads of retirement. Her interviews, research and resource list have been incredibly useful. Bravo to this accomplished writer!
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