Unf*ck Your Habitat (a rare self-help review!) — Rachel Hoffman

January 21, 2020

Unf*ck Your Habitat by Rachel  HoffmanTITLE: Unf*ck Your Habitat: You’re Better Than Your Mess
AUTHOR: Rachel Hoffman
GENRE: Nonfic/Self-Help
PAGES: 222pg
SOURCE: Purchase

Finally, a housekeeping and organizational system developed for those of us who’d describe our current living situation as a “f*cking mess” that we’re desperate to fix. Unf*ck Your Habitat is for anyone who has been left behind by traditional aspirational systems. The ones that ignore single people with full-time jobs; people without kids but living with roommates; and people with mental illnesses or physical limitations. Most organizational books are aimed at traditional homemakers, DIYers, and people who seem to have unimaginable amounts of free time. They assume we all iron our sheets, have linen napkins to match our table runners, and can keep plants alive for longer than a week. Basically, they ignore most of us living here in the real world.

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I’ve been meaning to read this for ages, and since I bought the new Cleaning Sucks journal earlier this month, it felt like time to finally pick this up! I had read snippets on the UfYH website before (enough to know I liked Hoffman’s style), but hadn’t really sat down to tackle this one cover to cover, and I’m glad I did. While the online resources do offer a lot of great material (for free!), if you can swing a copy of the full text, I recommend pairing them together.

Hoffman has a way of putting things that really makes sense, all while reminding us to be kind to ourselves, to respect the difference between “excuses” and “reasons” (excuses are why you don’t want to do something, reasons are why you genuinely can’t), and to focus on any level of progress, not just perfectionism. I’ve never read a self-help book about cleaning and organization that so thoroughly considers the limitations people might have, from physical ailments to mental illnesses to childhood traumas and more. As someone who has ADHD, depression, anxiety, and chronic pain all jumbled together, I can’t count how many self-help books have made me feel totally judged or overlooked, and that’s not the case here.

She also caters her insights to people who live with others, whether it’s a spouse or child, parents, roommates, etc. — thankfully that’s not something I have to deal with since my spouse is just as interested in getting our home in order as I am, but I know a lot of people will benefit from these sections!

I think Unfuck Your Habitat is altogether a really solid read for anyone who needs a little help and motivation in getting their surroundings in order, especially if you’re feeling overwhelmed or fearing the risk of failure. I highlighted so much in this book and could easily see myself rereading it whenever I need a little kick in the butt or to be reminded that I’m not alone and I can do this.


c o n t e n t – w a r n i n g s →

d i v e r s i t y →

inclusion of people with mental illnesses, physical illness, chronic pain, and households that fall outside of the “nuclear family” stereotype

t l ; d r →

An excellent self-help guide for anyone struggling to find the motivation, how-to, or guidelines for unfucking their own habitats. Given that I almost never review self-help titles on this blog, I’d consider this post’s entire existence a raving review.


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More about Destiny @ Howling Libraries

Just a horror aficionado/geek girl trying to juggle motherhood, reading, blogging, gaming, and everyday life.

    1. I’m glad this worked so well for you! It definitely makes me excited to pick it up, as I feel like me and my executive dysfunction could use the help. 🙂

    1. This sounds like a practical read. I’m glad it was so helpful for you. I love that you note the book addresses a difference between reasons and excuses. Not acknowledging that difference (i.e. thinking everything is an excuse rather than a legitimate reason) can be very stressful for me personally. I can see myself making use of this book in the future, when I have more of a habitat to take care of!

    1. Thanks for sharing this Destiny. Should I go down the route of wanting to read a book like this it totally sounds like this is most likely the one for me. I appreciate the insight. 🙂 Best to you and yours for your habitat work.

    1. Thanks for sharing, Destiny! <3 I don't often read self help books, but I'm so happy that this one worked out well for you! It's great to know that the author does a fantastic job making the distinctions between excuses and reasons, and that she focuses on the levels of progress!

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