Friday, August 21, 2009


Last week I was watching a show on A & E that focuses on hoarders. It was fascinating. I am acquainted with one of the organizers who worked with one of the hoarders.

It reminds me of how difficult this issue is to address. Hoarders, for the most part, are unable to distinguish between what is and what is not valuable. Letting go of items is an extremely anxiety ridden proposition. Many times hoarding is a result of needing to exert control over an environment. To alter the environment and mind set of the hoarder is often a long term project. Frequently, a team approach is helpful and patience and being non-judgmental are critical.

One of the things I found really fascinating is the level of detail the hoarders were able to report about the most minute items (even food that had completely rotted!).

All of this made me ask myself, where am I a hoarder in my life? We all have things that we have a hard time letting go of. Even things we know have little to no value. This is different from collecting of course. For me, silly as it sounds, I find it hard to throw away plastic grocery bags. I suspect this is both from an environmental standpoint and a utilitarian one. I end up using them for trash can liners, but somehow the volume of bags always outstrips the amount of uses I have for them.

So, what do you have trouble letting go of? And why, do you think, that is? It will be interesting to see who has what to say.

Have a good weekend, all.

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