Sunday

Hoarding Again? Do You Just Have Too Much Stuff?

In this corner is a pile of stuff and in that one is a cluster of things that you don't need, but you just like, and then elsewhere is "their stuff."  Is it any wonder that you can think some times?  But how much is too much?  Time to take inventory of what you have and whether or not it is really as useful as you tell yourself and others.

I recall a relative who enjoyed collecting stuff like a boy loves playing video games.  She collected anything that looked like it worked, things that she thought others needed, and other stuff "that didn't look bad."  It was crazy how much she accumulated and she lived by herself!

So when you look around and can't find anywhere comfortable to relax without stuff around you, can barely cook in your kitchen, use the bathroom, and do other things, you got to know, "I have too much stuff!"  Tripping over things, moving one thing to get to another and another, weird smells, inadequate appliances (because vents are blocked, piping, etc.), will drive you mad! 

Do things matter more than people?  If your answer is "yes" (at least secretly), then you will need an assistant to help you stay focused, because chances are you have two characters living within yourself, one who has been comforting you with buying more stuff and the other who has been attempting to stand up for your well-being but is losing the fight.  Then there is you who just wants to do something!

Now if you can clearly see that the books, electronics, home decor, furniture, collectibles, and outdated items need a home, other than yours, then why not create a plan like this while you still have your mind to do it.

MY PLAN TO BRING ORDER, BEAUTY and WONDERFUL SCENTS TO MY HOME

Week One - Make appointment for pick up, donating items families and homeless need i.e.) blankets, sweaters, appliances, etc.

Week Two - Selling things I don't use but in good condition i.e.) jewelry, electronics, organizers, etc.

Week Three - Calling relatives and friends to check out items I don't mind parting with.

Week Four - Throwing out anything that is broken, no longer works, etc.

After all those items leave, you will need to clean and make that place smell good in addition to getting some things fixed.  Molds, mildews, and even rodents and insects are constant problems when one collects much.  However, they all go away once the issues are dealt with slowly but surely. 

In a month's time, you will see how all that stuff you thought were comforting you really wasn't.  You might be shocked at first, maybe even angry or sad, but once the whirlwind of emotions leave you, you will feel so much lighter.  Be sure you have a supportive network that will encourage you! 

Stay positive!  Think of how nice it will be to open up a cabinet and find just what you need.  You will experience bliss again being able to sit or lie down in comfort without feeling suffocated by your stuff.  You may even want to invite a few people over without feeling ashamed.

Sometimes what throws us into a state of collecting and buying goods is something hurtful happening to us.  Rather than face our fears, pain, and other issues, we use things to comfort, but they never seem to do their job before we are back to getting things all over again. 

Here are some helpful things you can do to stay focused on cleaning up your cluttered spaces:

1.  Post a note or more than a few reminding yourself of how special you are and why you wanted to begin your quest to clear your space and your mind. 

2.  Display beautiful, positive things (a few inspiring pieces), but not those things that remind you of people, places and things that brought you pain. 

3.  Listen to inspirational music with or without words in your environment daily rather than songs that remind you of someone or something that hurt deeply. 

4.  Encourage yourself by focusing on what is right with you and be sure your environment displays that everyday. 

5.  Embrace cleanliness and order like you do a friend and use a fresh, well-organized environment to move you to create again.  What are you good at? 

Allow yourself the space to work again and then give or sell your wonderful creations just in time for the next holiday.  The energy thrives in your environment when there is room to breathe, create, give, receive and give again!

Nicholl McGuire is the author of When Mothers Cry and other books.

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