Finally Freedom From Fat!

Are you self-conscious about your weight? Do you try to cover those extra pounds with flouncy tops and baggy, yoga pants? Do you have “gateway” foods that lead to mindless munching?

What if you were free of constantly thinking about food and having your body on your mind from the moment you wake up until you go to bed? How would you like losing weight and never being hungry? That’s what I experienced four years ago and wrote a book about it to help you.

Here’s an email I received from Liz who shares what she’s learned from The Mouth Trap: the butt stops here!

Dear Pam and Nelly: 

I listened to The Mouth Trap audio book over the course of a week or so, stopping as I needed to digest things and am now re-listening with the intent of taking some notes. You’ve really helped me! Let me tell you how:

  1.  It is good to know that hunger shouts and the satisfaction voice is so soft. I’m getting better at listening to the little voice.
  2.  Chewing food more could be the advice that could reverse the obesity trend. I’ve always read we should eat slower, so yeah, I put down my fork between bites and it took longer to finish but made no difference in my satiety or amount of food eaten. But when I chew 40 to 60 times (it is an art to learn how to chew so many times & I’m getting better) I feel satisfied when I’m done with a modest portion. I had a tuna salad on toasted rye today for a late lunch and was very hungry, but for the first time in my life I couldn’t finish the sandwich! I was satisfied and it wouldn’t have been comfortable to eat more.
  3.   The thing that is helping me fight habit hunger is being able to write down what I didn’t eat. Yesterday I didn’t eat 4 pieces of delicious upside-down lemon cake. I also didn’t eat a square of chocolate. And all the stuff I don’t eat is often just gateway food, getting me started on mindless munching. If I’ve written down that I didn’t eat it, I can’t very well go back and eat it, now can I? 

It is so calming to know that when I go on my sailing vacation this summer, I will be less fat than I am now, even though I will still have more to go. 

Thank you for your inspiration.
Liz and Lizzy (my inner child)

Liz and Lizzy are on their way to a lighter life and knowing this new way of eating takes practice, we need to remember that we didn’t get overweight overnight and we aren’t going to be a healthy weight overnight. We need to be easy with our new-found way and be kind and loving with ourselves as we gradually take the weight off. One pound a week is all I ask, and that doesn’t mean you can’t have the foods you love, it means you have them in moderation, which is another art form we have to re-learn at meal time and in-between.

The Mouth Trap: the butt stops here! will teach you how to enjoy your food more than you ever have before! I’m sure you’ve heard a lot these days about restricting your carbs, maybe now’s the time for you join Liz, Lizzy and the thousands who are discovering a low-carb lifestyle is a healthy way to achieve and maintain the weight you were meant to be.

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A Quick Thanks

Dear FlyLady,

I’ve been flying for over 4 years now. I stop, then start, then stop… I am inconsistent lol.I want to share that no matter how many times I fail at my schedule, I know that I can start back on Day 1 of your BabySteps. I know that it’s okay that life got in the way and threw my routine out the window. I know that I can start over again and it’s okay!!!This way of thinking has helped me get control of my perfectionism. It has helped me to realize I don’t need everything to be perfect. Thank you so much for sharing your passion!

You are a blessing to me!

<3 C.J.

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What Do You Do With Your Clutter?

Hello FlyLady,

What do you do with your “clutter”? Do you give it a kiss and throw it in the trash? Or send it to the thrift store?

I have clutter. I am reading your emails and am ready to be reborn ;). We are planning to move very soon and do not plan to take everything with us so I have to declutter. I know I have a lot to go through, so what do I do after I collect it all?



Dear Holly,

I am so happy that you are beginning to get rid of your clutter. Please do not do too much too fast! I don’t want you to crash and burn. This is why we ask you to spend  15 minutes a day getting rid of your clutter. We like to babystep our way through the clutter. We did not collect it all at once. Your home did not get messy in a day and it is not going to be clutter free overnight.

One of our FLYing Lessons is to declutter 15 minutes a day. In the  FlyShop, our  Declutter Kit and our Timer are great tools to facilitate this task.
declutter kit
We have three types of clutter:

  • Give Away
  • Put Away
  • Throw Away

We like to play games and establish routines to get rid of clutter and keep us focused:

  • 27 Fling Boogie
  • 5 Minute Room Rescue
  • Hot Spot Fire Drill
  • Daily Missions
  • Weekly Zones

The clutter that needs to be given away has to get out of your house right then! Do not pile up an extra bedroom. Do not fill up your garage. Do not place it by your front door.

This means as soon as your timer goes off, go take your clutter to your car! This way the next time you are out, you can drop it off at your favorite resale charity. My favorite is Habitat for Humanity. Last year we built our first house. Habitat has 750 Restores all over the USA and Canada. If you don’t have a Restore near you then pick your favorite charity. Keep in mind that Habitat does not take clothing. They usually have a Goodwill Donation Box on their premises.

Please do not donate items that need to be thrown away. We need to be responsible for our own trash. Charities cannot afford to dispose of your trash.

Please pace yourself when you declutter. If you take babysteps you will not feel as violated. Just think how you would feel if someone came into your house and got rid of all your stuff. This is why I am not fond of those decluttering shows. Spend 15 minutes a day and before you know it your clutter will be gone.

It took me three months of doing a 27 Fling Boogie, three times a day; morning, afternoon, and evening. I had three rules during the three months of my decluttering: the clutter had to go to the car immediately, when I got to the charity resale shop, I could not go in and buy anything, and I was not allowed to go to yard sales.

It is the consistency of decluttering every day that is going to help you get rid of the CHAOS and Clutter.

You can do this!


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Morning Musing: Trouble Knowing Where to Start

Dear Friends,

We want a home that hugs us! But where do we start? This has been the underlying question that causes us to procrastinate. I have an answer. Let’s have some fun and declutter!

We start with shining our sink. That is the absolute first habit to establish is keeping our sinks clean and shiny.

Then we declutter. That’s when the question comes up again, “Where do I start?” I have been thinking about this and sometime we get the cart before the horse.

Here is the reason we have to address our clutter issues.

1. Clutter waste time
2. Clutter makes our home look messy
3. Children pull out everything; fewer toys = less mess
4. Too many clothes makes laundry hard to do and to put away
5. Clutter causes us to feel overwhelmed. It zaps our energy.
6. We want peace in our lives and with clutter around there is no peace.
7. Clutter stands in the way of our dreams.

Back to the question of the day; Where do I start? Chicken or the egg syndrome once again; do I declutter the flat surfaces or the cubby holes. I have the answer. BOTH! Now don’t get upset! We are not going to do it all at once. I am going to walk you through this one babystep at a time.

The reason your flat surfaces are piled high is because you do not have a place for the items in your hotspot. The easiest way to save time is to have a place for everything and everything in its place. Didn’t your Granny teach you that? Our problem is that we don’t know where to put anything because all of our storage places are cluttered.

Here is my story: I have telephone and computer stuff in lots of places. When I need something I spend a lot of time searching for it. I had to decide where I wanted to keep my geek toys. For me that had to easily accessible when I wanted something. I decided that I would keep them in a Rubbermaid sweater bin that would slid under my extra bed. But wait! My memorabilia was in one of those bins and the other one was full of tote bags and zipper bags. Here is what to I had to do.

I chose my cedar chest to hold my keep sakes. It had a pillow, two sweaters, a small comforter and other memorabilia; the pillow got donated along with the two sweaters and the comforter is being washed to give to a precious little girl. That made room for the bin of keep sakes. I picked up the bin and just poured it into the cedar chest. I didn’t get sidetracked by sorting this box of magazines and other papers. That was not my goal. Now the bin was empty. I was still collecting all the geek toys into one place. I took the other Rubbermaid sweater bin and pulled out all the totes and zippered bags. Put them all in one bag and declutter the ones I don’t like. I placed that in the top of my closet with my other tote bags and purses. Now I had two bins empty. I took the declutter items to the car and put the trash in the garbage can.

Now I was ready to start sorting my geek toys into one bin. With my trusty declutter kit right beside me; Give away, Put Away and Throw away. Now laundry basket is empty. The Rubbermaid bin is labeled and ready to roll under the bed and I have one empty one. See how easy this is. Now I am going to give you a step by step list to get started.

I started by thinking about everything having a place and everything being in its place. As a result of just collecting my geek toys, I have consolidated my memorabilia, my purses and tote bags and I have one empty storage container.

NOTE: Before you start this make sure you are dressed to lace up shoes and you have a done our morning routine. Then put on some fun music. Our Up Kind of Day CD has a lot of peppy music.

Where am I going to put my stuff?

1. How often will you use it- this determines where you put it.
2. Hard to get to or easily accessible (I needed easily accessible)

What is living in that space now?

3. Is it clutter that can be donated? (Much of it could be donated to make room)
4. Can it be put in another other place with like items (I used my cedar chest)

What are you going to put the items in?

5. Rubbermaid bin (under bed storage or tote)
6. A Basket (my laundry basket for collecting geek toys)
7. A decorative storage device out in the open (cedar chest)
8. A Storage bin that seals to protect items from moisture and rodents. (Rubbermaid sealed bins)

What do you do now?

9. You will need a Declutter Kit: A give-away, put-away and throw-away bin or bag.
10. You will need a timer, note card, marker and tape. Once you decide you label it.
11. Set a timer for 15 minutes and begin collecting your caches of like items in a laundry basket.
12. Set a timer for another 15 minutes and empty the place you want to put your collection.
13. Declutter things that need to go away and throw away the trash.
14. Don’t just throw it in the floor put it where you want it to go.
15. Don’t get hung up on wanting to organize those things. Just consolidate them for now.

What next?

16. Set your timer for 15 minutes.
17. Place the items you have been collecting in their new home. As you put them away declutter the broken items and duplicates.
18. Put the container where you want it.
19. Gather up the trash and throw it away
20. Take the give-away items to the car
21. Pick up after yourself

Now what?

22. Set your timer for 15 minutes and
23. Fix yourself something warm and comforting to drink.
24. Put your feet up and celebrate that you got rid of clutter, consolidated your stuff and found a place for it! I am so proud of you!

I have been corralling my little stash and dash caches of computer and telephone gadgets. What do you need to corral? Clear out the holding area and let’s herd our stuff together. Everything having a place and everything in its place; makes for a peaceful home.


Beginner Pack

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When Will The Organization Come?

FlyLady TimerDear FlyLady,

I’m tired of the ups and downs of being organized and keeping a household running well to keep everyone happy. I’m tired of feeling like it is my fault. When will the organization come? When will there be peace? Hopefully soon I will conquer all with FlyLady and zones. May there be happiness again.

FlyBaby Patty


Dear Patty,

Life is always going to be filled with Plan Bs and sometimes even Plan Cs and Ds. Organization does not come to you! You can’t just blink your eyes and be organized! The Good Lord knows that if we could, we would do it in a heartbeat.

When plans get sidetracked for what ever reason, it is how we look at those derailed plans that make the difference in our lives. When we are looking through our perfectionism glasses is when we give up and throw in the towel. If we have on our fun creative glasses, we can make a game of things. Let’s just use frozen water pipes as an example. We were out of water a few weeks ago because our well pump died. Last winter our pipes froze. So I have experience with this.

When you look at things with Perfectionism clouding your vision, you give up before you ever get started. You don’t see what you can do, only what you can’t do. I have a few things that make my life easier in the event of frozen pipes and no water. We keep some extra gallons of water in the basement for occasions like this. Whenever we have these situations, I like to pretend that I am living in the pioneer days of Little House on the Prairie. We are blessed because we do live in the woods. Guess what, bears do it in the woods and you do too, when you are camping. All you have to do is dig a hole. It may be inconvenient but I like to see how well I can survive in tough times. When the times get tough, the tough get going.

It is all in your attitude! You mentioned conquering all with FlyLady and the zones! It is not really about winning! It is just about staying in the game. We do that with one babystep at a time.

My home did not get organized in one day or one month! It took establishing one habit at a time! Then, stringing those simple habits into routines. I started with shining my sink!

The best thing I ever did was quit beating myself up. That was my other habit, to be kind to me! I did this by not piling on, giving myself breaks, and settingmy timer and making a game out of clearing clutter and cleaning house! We love to play! It is all in our attitude.

So ask yourself what CAN I do? Instead of telling yourself what you can’t do!

As my granny always said! “Cain’t never could do anything!”

Now set your timer for 15 minutes and jump in and do something! Anything is better than nothing!



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Procrastination is Not a Thief of Time

Dear Friends,

This week we are thinking about procrastination. We have all heard that procrastination is the thief of time. I don’t think that is entirely the case. Time is constant; we all have the same hours in every single day, it is how we choose to use those hours that steals the time. We all seem to think that things will take longer than they really will, so we talk ourselves out of doing them. Just what have you been procrastinating about lately: Laundry, getting the car washed or is it something much deeper than household chores?

Have you gotten in a rut? Not a bad rut; but let’s say a comfortable rut. You know the same ole same ole! You go through your day without any thought about your passion. Passion: What is that anyway?

When procrastination gets in the way of your passion; it becomes an excuse to not follow your dreams. We have all said it in some form or fashion, “I don’t have time to go back to school and finish my degree”. This “I don’t have time” attitude gives us the excuse to not be or do what we were put on Earth to do with our lives. You are robbing yourself of you! Not to mention what you are robbing the world of: YOU!

When your heart is not in what you are doing then nothing will ever make you happy! It doesn’t matter if you make all the money in the world, if it doesn’t make you happy, it means nothing. Happiness comes from within. This is what FLYing is all about. Finally Loving Yourself enough to know that for some reason you are not happy. You thought getting the house clean was all it would take to make you happy.

As you learn the FlyLady way of breaking things down into babysteps; you will find the right path that is going to lead you to true happiness. This happiness starts by letting go of procrastination and perfectionism.

I never knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. For years I was a bookkeeper, then I taught Fly Fishing. I was not fulfilling my destiny because I still had an empty hole to fill. Nothing would fill up this hole; spending money, relationships, food or anything else I used to keep me in my rut.

You see; ruts keep you in a path that is not your choosing. Because it is so hard to get out of the rut, it is just easier to continue on this sidetracked journey. I can hear you now, “but I did choose my path!” Did you really or did circumstances just put you in this position.

Some people never get out of their ruts of procrastination. It involves too much change. When we allow our routines to take over the maintenance of our home and we are on automatic pilot then we are freed up to follow our dreams one babystep at a time.

I knew someone who always wanted to be an attorney. He let his dreams slip away. He thought that following his dreams was taking from his family. He had no clue that he would giving them a whole human being who was not bitter. As a result of putting off going back to school or not moving closer to a law school he became a martyr. These words would come out of his mouth, “Just look what I gave up for you!” Well no one loves a martyr; not even the martyr!

Procrastination is a thief, but not the thief of time! It is a thief of self-esteem. Sometimes we cannot see what it is we are missing until we get rid of the things we have been procrastinating about. As long as we allow ourselves the opportunity for self-loathing we will never fill our voids. Why should we, we are not worthy; when we beat ourselves up on a daily basis for the little things in life; we can’t even think about our purpose for living! We have brainwashed ourselves into believing that this is all there is, so why want more passion or joy!

It was only after I got rid of my clutter and found my routines that my purpose for living was revealed to me. Open up your hearts by taking care of the things you have been putting off till later. Later is a lie that never happens unless you set your mind to clearing out your mind clutter! That is all procrastination really is!

Are you ready to FLY with anti-procrastination being the stepping stocalendarsmall2016nes out of your rut?


Have you been procrastinating about getting your new calendar. I know you have been trying to make do with some little calendar that is not big enough for your family’s events. Don’t procrastinate another day. You are the one who gets hurt when you do.


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Redeemed FlyBaby

Dear FlyLady,

I flew off the wagon a few years back and landed again about a month ago. I have been amazed at how quickly I was able to declutter most of my house in just a few minutes each day. While I still have work to do, including a couple of hot spots in the otherwise organized rooms, and one room where the door remains closed for how, I am happy to say my kitchen is in great shape, as well as the living room, bathroom, and master bedroom.

Today, my mother had scheduled major surgery. I spent eight hours at the hospital, will spend several hours tomorrow, spending the next night there, and more time over the weekend. What an enormous stress-reliever to be with her without worrying about anything at home. There was no guilt over leaving undone kitchen or laundry tasks, no dirty dishes, no unmade bed, no unswept/unmopped floors. And when I returned home this evening, I was greeted with NOTHING THAT NEEDED TO BE DONE, except sip the glass of wine my DH had set out for me while he and I relaxed and talked about our day.

Before landing back on the wagon, I would not have been able to devote quality time to my mother when she most needed me, nor would I have been able to feel relaxed while being away from so many other chores normally vying for my attention. And I certainly wouldn’t have walked into a peaceful, serene and calm environment when I opened the front door.

I know a lot of your subscribers have children at home, but there are many now dealing with elder care. In these and countless other life scenarios, the FlyLady system has brought joy to many a chaotic home.

Redeemed FlyBaby Gayle in Asheville

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What Sweet Relief

Dear FlyLady,

I recently wrote about my clean car, but I just have to write again!

My good friends from across the country occasionally have a chance to come see me. Her husband drives a big private coach and if they are anywhere near me, they go out of their way to drop by, often with little notice due to the scheduling. I love to see them, but I used to go into a tizzy knowing my house was a wreck.

This time they called and all I had to do was grab a few things for a summer supper and put out the large towels that I know they prefer. That morning I had shined my sink and cleaned the counter tops with my Purple Rags, and swished and swiped the bath with my Bronze Rags before I left for work. My living room was already clean and vacuumed, and the shower was clean from doing a little cleaning daily. AHHH What sweet relief!

Thank You so much again for your inspiration, advice, and encouragement. It has truly been life changing.

Kathy T FlyBaby in the Heartland

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Young@Heart: Let’s Take A Pity Trip

My sister and I used to laugh about looking mentally ill with no make-up on. We both could absolutely look certifiable with just a slightly open mouth, relaxed facial muscles and a slight drool. I’ve often thought how fun it would be to be an actress with a role playing a mentally ill character. My “morning” face would need little from the make-up department.morningface

The imaginary pity trip I want you to take, is actually a dejunking idea that requires you to get a pathetic feeling about your closet (your inner child will love it). Set the timer for 15 minutes and pretend you’re very poor and you have to pack for a trip to some horrible place like Siberia. (I really don’t know if Siberia is that awful, I just know, in the movies, people get sent there as a punishment.)The whole point of this is to get into that character.

oldGet a garbage sack (you’re too poor to have a suitcase) and go into your closet and start packing for the trip. It’s a pity trip and you’ll need to look awful while you’re there, so you’ll need clothes that are too tight (that always makes you look pathetic) out of style and worn. Pick out accessories, jewelry, shoes, etc. Make complete outfits. (You could put an outfit on and take a pitiful selfie just for the fun of it.)

Oh yes, don’t forget toiletries. Look under the sink for some bottles and jars of stuff you never smear on yourself. For sure they’ll be perfect for where you’re going. And while you’re at it, check out your book shelves for books you never read and magazines you’ve thought you’d read someday but won’t. See if you can fill the garbage bag in 15 minutes.

I don’t know at what point our closets, cupboards and drawers become holding tanks for clothes and accessories we’ll never wear again. When you pack for a real trip, you pick the clothes you really like and that fit you now. That’s a clue to what you need to have hanging in your closet. The clothes you wore ten years ago are not only not in style, you’ve changed and no doubt your preferences have changed. Why have clothing cramming your closet that you’d never take on a trip? It’s kind of silly.

When you’re all packed for your imaginary pity trip, it’s important that you follow through with it. No, you’re not going to Siberia, but you are going to drive to a donation center. As soon as you dump off the bag, I promise you’ll feel great about what you’ve accomplished!

If this sounds fun to do, why not go do it now? It’ll be 15 minutes well spent. When your closet has in it just what you’re wearing during the season you’re in, it’ll help you so much with deciding what to wear each day and you’ll be amazed at the time you’ll save getting dressed.

See you in Siberia!

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What Goes in an Office in a Bag?

Dear FlyLady,

Alright, I think I may have a silly question, but here it goes? What goes into an office in a bag? How do you set one up?

I am in the process of building my Control Journal. Step by step. But what are the steps to building an Office in a Bag?

I love the idea I’m just not sure how to pull it off. Your testimonial today helped. But I could sure use a few pointers. I’d like to get my desk in order so I am ready for end of the year Tax stuff before March/April next year. I have begun to work 15 minutes at a time on filing my piles now instead of the week before my tax appointment. Miracles never cease to happen! Thanks for all of your inspiration.

Fluttering in the Desert

Dear Fluttering in Desert,

I want you to think of the Office in a Bag as a portable desk. Imagine that you are sitting in a doctor’s office waiting for hours. What would you need if you wanted to send a card?

You would need …..

1. A greeting card
2. A pen
3. A stamp

Let say you needed to make a grocery list.

You would need ……

4. A Pencil
5. A Piece of paper or a notepad

Let’s say you want to pay some bills.

You would need……

6. Your bills
7. More stamps
8. Envelopes
9. A small calculator
10. Your checkbook

Let’s say you want to draw a scale drawing of your living room to play with rearranging your furniture.

You might need……..

11. A little ruler
12. Some Graph Paper
13. Some colored pencils or markers

Here are a few more things you might need.

14. A small stapler
15. A few rubber bands
16. A few paper clips
17. A Birthday card
18. Some Thank You Notes
19. Pretty stationery
20. Your address book
21. Some people keep their Control Journal in it.

See it is not that hard to think of the things you may need. It is an office in a bag or your Desk drawer in a bag. It can help you get rid of a piece of furniture that becomes a huge hotspot!

Keep it to a minimum because we can get too much in them before we know it. Now that there are school supplies everywhere you can find some little $1. items to go into it.


We have 4 colors of our  Office in a Bag. You can get it with our Control Journal too and save a little money.

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