How do you know if you are a borderline hoarder? There are plenty of signs that could point to a hoarding problem, but even if you have some hoarding tendencies, it’s not too late to turn things around. You can avoid clutter by following a few key suggestions.
What Is Hoarding?
One of the most basic definitions of hoarding is that it’s the inability to get rid of common items. Hoarding differs from collecting because the items are generally not of value and most people would see them as just being junk. Hoarders are usually very protective of their stash of goods and get defensive when asked about it.
If you are a hoarder, help is available. Many people have been able to break the hoarding habit with some therapy and new practices. If you have ever wondered if you are a borderline hoarder, check your habits against these six red flags:
Are You a Borderline Hoarder?
You Can’t Bring Yourself to Throw Things Away
Many people hold on to things that they don’t need, but hoarders have trouble tossing even the most mundane things. If you find yourself collecting items of little or no monetary value, you might be bordering on being a hoarder. Set aside time every month to go through your house and toss everything that doesn’t have a purpose.
There Are Places in Your Home That You Can’t Get To
Do you have entire rooms of your house that you can’t access because there’s too much clutter there? Hoarders will often fill up every empty space with their collections, rendering entire areas of their homes inaccessible. Take a weekend and clear out inaccessible rooms. Enlist the help of a friend and ruthlessly throw things away.
The Majority of Things You Collect Have No Material or Sentimental Value
There are those who collect items, and then there are those who hoard. Collectors have specific interests, and their collections are generally contained or displayed in one area. If you wouldn’t put your collections on display for all of your friends and family to see, toss them.
You Have No System of Organization
Another thing that differentiates the hoarder from the collector is that hoarders often have no system of organization. This manifests itself in cluttered or inaccessible homes. Find a system of organization that works for you and stick with it. Invest in good storage containers and put everything in its place.
There Are Sanitation Concerns
Although not all hoarder homes are dirty, many have some sanitation concerns due to the sheer amount of stuff in the house. We are not talking about a sink full of dirty dishes once in a while but seriously unclean environments that could actually pose a health or safety threat of not dealt with. If this rings true to you, call in professional cleaning service for a deep clean and then strive to keep your home tidy.
The Thought of Parting With Belongings Is Stressful
There is a serious mental aspect of unhealthy hoarding. Many times hoarders have an attachment to their things that they can’t quite articulate, and the thought of getting rid of anything is stressful or even painful. It helps to talk to a trusted friend or therapist about your attachment difficulties and work through your feelings of anxiety.
Avoid Clutter and Make Your House Amazing
Hoarding is different than collecting. It’s about amassing stuff, not building value, or retaining things that have true meaning to you or your family. If you’re finding it hard to let go of the junk, parts of your home are now off-limits, or it’s even getting difficult to clean, you might be a borderline hoarder. The good news is that it’s not too late to get started on healthy new habits.