After retiring from the Air Force, the Air Force Reserve and managing a military personnel office, Cathy Sevier attended a professional organizers meeting. She felt like she was home. “I like being a part of helping a client organize their cluttered spaces into organized spaces,” Sevier said. “My actual reward is observing them. The look of being overwhelmed is replaced by a look of happiness and relief when the job is finished.”
Name: Cathy Sevier.
Job/employer: Owns Scattered Possessions.
Contact: www.scatteredpossessions.com, 360-904-1455.
I was attending Oregon State University in 1972 when I left school and joined the Air Force. I was on active duty until December 1979. After active duty I immediately joined the Air Force Reserve.
I received a degree in psychology from Washington State University Vancouver in May 2005.
In June 2008 I retired from the Reserve and a federal job. I managed an educational training office for four years, and my last job was to manage a military personnel office.
A co-worker and I talked about organizing all the time. We decided to go to a meeting of the National Association of Professional Organizers, Oregon Chapter, in April 2008. We felt like we were home because we were among like-mined people. I attended that meeting seven years ago.
How did you get into this line of work: I started business right away after attending the professional organizing meeting. It was a bit of a challenge because I had taken no business classes and didn’t have experience running a business. I have learned a lot about the business world since I started.
Most rewarding part of job: I like being a part of helping a client organize their cluttered spaces into organized spaces. My actual reward is observing them. The look of being overwhelmed is replaced by a look of happiness and relief when the job is finished.
Most challenging part of job: I have worked with a few hoarders who had an overabundance of possessions and couldn’t let go of anything. People have a sentimental attachment to their possessions. For example, if someone they love gave them an item they can’t ever let it go, even though their loved one has died. We work through the emotional process together.
Personal/business philosophy: I truly feel that most of us would be more calm and more fulfilled with less stuff. All the unused items take up space and it costs us money to maintain them.
Something you would like to do over: I learned a lot about running a business by reading books. If I had to do it over, I would take a business class and a marketing class before starting my business.
Residence: Burnt Bridge Creek.
Best feature of my Vancouver community: I live near Pacific Community Park and I always feel good when I go there. Vancouver has a number of parks and I like that.
What would make your community a better place: I like to swim and would love it if there was an indoor/outdoor public swimming pool.
Favorite restaurant/pub/coffee shop/: La Costa Mexican Restaurant near Westfield Vancouver mall, and I frequent a Starbucks near my home.
Hobbies: I love yoga, walking, swimming, sewing and making beaded jewelry.
Volunteer activities: In the past I have organized the Hough Foundation clothes closet.
Favorite travel destination: My family went to Hawaii last May and in the near future I want to visit Tuscany.
Most interesting book in last 12 months: “Clear your Clutter with Feng Shui” by Karen Kingston. I read this book long before I began as an organizer and found it very inspiring.
Most interesting play/movie/arts event: I loved Riverdance.
One thing you want to do this year: I want to visit my twin sister in Texas. I have not been there for five years.
Something you want to do within five years: Visit Italy.
One word to describe yourself: Emphatic.
Person you’d most like to meet: I attended an event, “The Life you Want,” held in Seattle. Oprah spoke during the event and I loved it. She was everything I thought she would be. I would like to meet the Dalai Lama because he is all about peace.