Thursday, May 3, 2012


Let me just say that I am not a hoarder! I can still see the surfaces of my dresser, desk and coffee table.I can see my bed and chairs and dining room table. I can make my way from one end of my house to the other without a map and without injury! So, I am not a hoarder. 
  >>>THIS is a Hoarder>>>>

I will admit to being a “collector” of beanie babies (cough, cough), music, books, magazine articles, photographs. I will acknowledge that I have accumulated a lot of STUFF in my lifetime, but everyone does that, right?

You probably won’t even be surprised to know that there are over a million and a half Google results for the search term ‘Psychology of Clutter’. Even before I knew that there was such a term, I spent a lot of time trying to psychoanalyze my clutter issues and my disorganization disorder.

I recently read a blog post by Jane Brody at the New York Times. She has been writing a series about her own de-cluttering efforts, “Making Progress Against Clutter”. The motivation for her attempt to control her clutter was the scheduled re-carpeting of several rooms. I can relate! We are finally getting new flooring after 27 years in this house, and I am faced with the prospect of moving a lot of stuff in preparation for the installation. In the process I am looking at things that have been stored in drawers and china cabinets and have not seen the light of day in many years, and I’m thinking as I examine these things: Why did I buy this?  Why do I still have this? Will my kids want this?

Many of these items are pretty – which is why I bought them – but I never use them. Many items were handed down to me by family members – but they’re not much in style these days. Do I need 8 moving boxes full of old photographs when I only display 15 or 20 photos? How many glass vases or candlesticks does one household need? Why do I take things that other people are getting rid of – even though I don’t need them? Sigh!

These questions are worthwhile to ponder, but alas, I don’t have time. I’ve got to move a lot of “stuff” from one room to another these next couple of weeks. I do promise that I will examine everything carefully before putting it back where it was stored. At this stage of my life I think a lot about what my family will do with my stuff when I’m gone. I don’t worry that they will give it all away. I worry about what they will think of me for having kept so much stuff for so long. I’m reminded of the parable of the rich fool (Luke 12:13-21). Do I really want to spend my time and my money and my energy building bigger barns to store my stuff? 

How do you deal with clutter?  Is it an issue for you at all?  Let me know your secrets and thanks for stopping by.

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