Psychological Roadblocks to Order

jen_heard_MBABreaking the Grip of our Stuff

With Spring busy season in full swing, organizers daily find themselves mired in piles of their clients’ stuff, accumulated over time.  Our assignment is simple — help simplify and purge in order to restore order to homes and small businesses.  Why does Springtime bring this behavior on, and what has led to the accumulation over the past year, or in some cases, multiple years?  I have been doing some thinking about this lately, as the time of year seems to bring on the purging and clarifying behavior.  There are a number of obstacles that seem to lead to the accumulation of stuff over time.

1. The Need to be Surrounded by Stuff

These clients have the need to have every size and shape of pot and pan, every conceivable size and shape of shoe or blue jean, and probably 5 tubes of toothpaste  in each bathroom and 15 rolls of scotch tape lying around the house.  He or she buys for comfort, because he doesn’t know where the item is in the house, or because he erroneously feels that he needs multiple versions.  These clients require a gentle approach of grouping like items, sorting like items and discovering how many they really have.  Then, it is easiest for them to come to the conclusion that they have space limitations, and they really don’t require that many iterations of the same thing.

2.  The Need to Constantly have to Create Order out of Chaos

Some clients feel like they need to be the family life-saver, and deliberately or sub-consciously maintain a certain level of disorder in their lives, because they enjoy the challenge that it presents to them.  If there isn’t something to fix, or rescue, they do not feel like they have value in the family.  This behavior takes a toll on a busy household, because only having one person with the information stifles everyone, and exhausts the “fixer”.  In this type of client, creating goals, and creating a lasting organizational system helps the whole family, and frees up the “fixer” for more important tasks.

3.  Sentimental Keepers of Stuff

Some clients have their stuff, their kids’ stuff, and stuff from parents, relatives and friends long gone…and they attach to all of it and feel compelled to keep all of it.  Energetically, this is a nightmare.  Clothing that you can no longer wear, that has stains and rips, yet has sentimental attachment needs to find a way to leave.  Discarding the items does not mean discarding the memories, but there are ways to save the memories without keeping all of the piles of stuff.  Digital cameras are great for this purpose.  Planning for a future use of the item by another party, and responsible stewardship of the item to get it into the hands of those in need is paramount.  And when someone finally understands why they have been hanging onto an item and can let it go to free themselves for the future, it is a beautiful thing.

So, if you are one of these three types of Savers of Stuff, consider your options, calling in reinforcements if necessary.  An Organizer is here to help you make the tough decisions, and see reality of how you deal with your stuff more clearly.  We are here to help propel you into your future by dealing with your past and moving through it into better days.

If you need help breaking the grip of your stuff, please call an organizer today at 248.931.3325.  Phone coaching is also available.

Be your best,

Jen Heard, MBA – Organizer/Coach


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Category: Charity, Closet Organizing, De-Clutter, Do-it-Yourself, Estate Clearing, Families, Hoarding, Home Organizing, Moms, Organization, Organize, Organizing in MI, Organizing in Michigan, Reduce Clutter, Self-help, Uncategorized

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