de-hoarding… it’s quite the process

I had a post written for yesterday but then I completely forgot to post it.  Oh well – I’ll use it tomorrow.

Today I want to talk about de-hoarding.  Phew!  On Friday I was SUPPOSED to get my treadmill fixed.  Yep, you read that correctly.  The fix-it guy called and I was taking out the trash and didn’t hear my phone ring.  I called him back – 4 times but he never showed or returned my call.  And I left some desperate messages, yo.  Now I have ANOTHER appointment for Tuesday.  I’m working on “woo-sah-ing” this frustration away.

Over the course of the last year the crap has piled up in the spare room where the treadmill is located.  When I first moved the treadmill in there, I cleared just enough space for it.  Then when it didn’t work, I ended up piling the crap back in there and on top of the treadmill.  Excellent work Amy.

I knew I had to do some damage if the fix-it guy was going to be able to get in there.  At the same time, I was using this as a catalyst to actually make some progress.  Not going to lie, this was harder than I anticipated.

As I was going through I realized I moved some very impractical things over to my small apartment.  Why did I move all of my scrapbooking supplies over when I haven’t scrapped in a couple of years?  Why did I move empty mason jars over for craft projects I may have done?!  (I blame pinterest on this one – apparently, the whole world can be fancied up with mason jars!  Honestly, I’ve just quit pinning these projects because they are only encouraging my hoarding!).  I also realized I keep many of the same things my mom used to keep.  A prime one?  Magazines.  Oh goodness, did I throw out some magazines.  And I had already done this once when I first moved!  I kept the ones that were/are recipe based and put them in my cookbook shelf but the other ones (that mostly encouraged how to get organized!) in the trash.  I didn’t even pause to look through them.

let goMaybe some of these seem like no brainers to others but for me, it is not uncommon to have plans for these items that I don’t follow through with.  But maybe someday I will.  Haha, I know – have you heard this phrase on the A&E show?!  One episode I watched a while back the therapist was defining hoarding to the hoarder – “if the collection of stuff interferes with the actual purpose of the room than this is hoarding”.  This definition drove fear into my heart!  And it fueled my give stuff away! throw stuff away! attitude!

Again, it wasn’t easy.  I had big plans for these boxes of candy canes – that I had purchased at Christmas time and still hadn’t completed the project.  I threw them away.  Then later in the evening I started having throwing out remorse.  I think I wanted those candy canes back!  I want to do those projects!  Plus other ones!  I know – this is just plain nuts but it’s the trouble letting go part of me screaming in my head!

one of my favorite “Far Side” cartoons

I texted Meagan – I needed some validation.  I did the right thing right?  I didn’t need those candy canes?!  (Clearly these red stripped candies became a bit symbolic) Meagan came through and gave me some mental and emotional fuel to keep going today.  I had this little chest/drawer thing that I don’t have space for.  I moved it to the dumpster for someone else to either save or throw away.  Friday I was hemming and hawing about whether or not I should keep it.  Today – it went out!  Shoe boxes, clothes, just plain weird stuff either got thrown out or put in a pile to be donated.

textUltimately, when I look in on all of the progress I made (in a lot shorter amount of time than I anticipated) I am quite pleased with the decrease in clutter.  I know I will need to continue to rid myself of the STUFF.  I will also need to continue to fight some of my natural inclinations toward saving or seeing potential in something when it’s completely unnecessary.  Also, with my ADD attributes I impulse buy all too often, another piece I am working on slowing down.  Oh and I don’t need to buy another candle for about 5 years.  Nor do I need to save the jars to be used on another project/storage after I have melted down the leftovers to make a new candle.  Because of course this is a logical next step.

Anyone else deal with hoarding issues or saving too much crap?  How do you battle this?

6 thoughts on “de-hoarding… it’s quite the process

  1. I save way too many things as I’m always afraid if I get rid of them I’ll need them later. Need to go through things regularly: it’s always on my to do list, another of my vices!

  2. YAY! I am SOOOOO proud of you!!!!! We really don’t need as much STUFF in our lives as we think we do. It makes life SO MUCH EASIER when you get rid of some of that STUFF. I promise!!!!!

    • I appreciate it! I feel so silly after it’s all done because I am happy to be rid of it but the process is hard. Not to mention the bit of remorse. But you are right – life IS easier!

  3. I have the part for the treadmill sitting next to the treadmill sitting next to it. It came on Saturday. Still have not gotten to it. I have been trying to clear stuff out for 9 months and three UHAULs later, and still have one Uhaul to go(which means two). But I do not think I have reached hoarder status yet. It is just so painful.

    • I know, it really is. I am still having a hard time getting rid of stuff my mom gave me. She passed away a year and a half ago and it’s still difficult to convince myself I don’t need it anymore. I hope it gets easier and easier for you! I really have enjoyed the newfound space!

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