Here’s a fun fact: Did you know that some people are born hoarders? This means, that they aren’t just being lazy or being hard headed about their possessions. It’s actually a genetic condition. That being said, this isn’t the case for all hoarders. Some people are stubbornly attached to items on behalf of a trauma they have undergone. And then some people are just plain messy. Psychologist of Smith College explains some of the psychology behind hoarding and provides some excellent tips for conquering clutter.
Here are 6 tips to help you control that unwanted household clutter:
1. Recognize The Difference Between Hoarding & Being Messy
Chances are, you’re not a hoarder. You probably just have a million things going on, as we humans do in our busy everyday lives. It’s been studied by scientists and recently, hoarding was categorized in the latest edition of the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, (DSM-5) as a disorder related to OCD. So no OCD doesn’t mean cleanliness. It’s an obsessive compulsion toward a certain act. It could be organizational or cleanliness or it could mean hoarding. You need to know the difference before attempting to end the clutter in your household. It may require more work than you think if you are indeed a hoarder.
2. Don’t Rush
There’s no need to go through your home and throw everything away. Organizing and sorting through personal items takes time. Start with the small things. Pick a certain room or section to work on each week. Or if each day if you have time on your hands. That clutter will be gone in no time.
3. Do Things Once
When sorting through things, we tend to have a ‘for now’ pile. This is a pile of things we don’t really know what to do with so we set them aside, well, ‘for now.’ But the problem is, we are just creating an even bigger mess. When you have a pile like that you really aren’t accomplishing the things you want to accomplish. So instead of having a ‘for now’ pile, figure out where that item is going to go and put it there or toss it out.
4. Scale Down
If you have items that you have never used or items that you have only looked at once, it’s safe to say you can probably let those items go. You don’t have to throw them away in fear of wasting a good valuable treasure. You can donate them or even have a garage sale and make money off of it. That way you know it found a good home and you no longer have to worry about it. I always like to say that if you don’t use it, lose it.
5. Make Use Of Storage boxes
If you truly cannot decide whether or not to toss or keep an item, keep it in a storage box. This is what they were made for. And when you use them, your space will look and feel more organized than it did when that stuff was laying all over the floor.
6. Toss It
Just because you have books about gardening does mean you have a green thumb. And just because you got a good deal on them doesn’t mean you need to keep them. Truth be told, you probably shouldn’t have even bought them. But since you did and you haven’t touched them since we are going to go ahead and let those go. Give them to that neighbor you see taking care of their yard all the time. Put them up for sale on . Or Regift them around the holidays. There’s plenty of things you can do with the things you don’t use.