Hoarding, culling and the struggle to find a balance

I'M A closet hoarder. There - I have said it. It's out in the open. I'm out of the closet, so to speak.

To be honest it was getting a bit crowded in my overflowing closet anyway.

It's an illness I struggle with every day. My natural urge is to keep things, but the fear of being buried alive or appearing on a trashy American TV show sometimes makes me rethink and I throw out... well, some things.

However, it's bloody Murphy's Law.

I haven't used an item for more than a year or so, and I resist my natural urge to hang onto it a bit longer.

I throw it out and, within a week or so, I suddenly have an urgent need to use said item.

This goes for clothes, cooking utensils, books, CDs, shoes and other everyday items.

In past years I have learnt to cull.

Living in London with only a 20kg bag to take between the Old Dart and home meant I had to be ruthless, remove all emotion and not think, just throw it in the bin.

I used this tactic recently when I moved house.

It got to the stage where I was opening draws I hadn't been into in ages.

I didn't even look, the whole lot just went in the bin.

I was ruthless, and was very proud of myself for not letting my hoarding tendencies take over.

Fast forward to last week, when at 10pm I couldn't find my camera charger.

The old camera doesn't get much use these days. The camera on my smart phone does the trick and is much handier.

But with my trip to the USA fast approaching, I decided I couldn't possibly stand at the Grand Canyon with my mobile phone taking photos.

But as I rummaged throughout my room, the realisation that I had thrown the damn thing out in the move dawned on me.

The hoarder in me was quick to pipe up and remind me this is why I'm a hoarder. This is why I keep things, and when I do need a cleanout I need to take my time and really think "could I use this EVER again?"

On the plus side, I did find some scratchies from last Christmas that I had forgotten about, and won $10!



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