Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Why Are You Holding On? Case #1

So much of what I do is figuring out why clients hold onto things. This week, I'm going to address some of the common reasons and the method to work past them. If you haven't noticed, I believe in keeping things simple, but don't focus on quick fixes. I believe in going a little deeper but also not constantly reinventing the wheel for every situation in life.

- Identify the origin of the behavior, feeling, or tendency so you can release ownership of it.
- Understand you don't have the power to stop the thoughts in your head but you do have the power to control your response to them.
- Anticipate the feelings and thoughts that stop you from doing something you want to do so you can prepare your response. Write them down and keep them accesible so you have them on hand when you need them.

- Figure out what's most important to you in life, and how you want to live in your space.
- The things in your life should be seen as tools to help you live the life you want to live.
- You don't have to (nor should you) entertain every thought that comes into your head.

Recent college grad who moved across the country with a tendency to hoard. We identified that her hoarding tendencies were passed down from her parents. She felt much better knowing that it's usually passed on to children.

After much discussion, she nows has a good idea of how she wants to dress, feel and function in her space. She knows this may change over time but for now, she has a direction that is suited for her. Acknowledging that she tends to hold onto things, and knowing that doing so is not helping her to live the way she wants to live, is the most powerful tool she has against falling trap to her old ways.


Kate said...

I'm looking forward to this week's discussion, as I know that I personally hold onto things for really odd and emotional reasons. The first year I got a live Christmas tree while I was in grad school, I couldn't bring myself to take the decorations down and get rid of the tree until nearly the end of January, and it was very emotional to do so. I think the psychology behind why people have trouble getting rid of things is pretty fascinating.

.Amanda said...

I really like this topic! I just feel like I am constantly organizing and not living my life! I am always trying to "get it right"! I buy things that I think will help...then I have to return them or get rid of them. Things are constantly in flux with a husband and two kids...new things--giant projects,etc. are coming...going and I am constantly getting rid of things, making room for things, trying to get my kids to get rid of things. It feels unmanageable. My mom's house was always crowded and sentimental and I have always craved space and ease-of-use, yet I do feel guilt and indecision when I make choices. For example, do I keep 4 sets of sheets for my bed? My linen closet is crowded and I spend time re-folding things quite often. I feel bad getting rid of stuff because I spent money on it but I do not like the clutter! I get rid of it, and then I buy another one thinking THAT will be the right one. I want contentment!

sayedeh said...

yeah that was totally me! i am so over owning crap and ridiculously happy about it.
i hope to pass this on to my daughter.