Debbie asked me to come by the other day, because she'd acquired some of the backdraft that her hoarder clients had been busily procuring, and she wanted to know if any of the items had actual worth.
In the process of going through the boxes of what was essentially crap, Debbie talked about the hoarders she works with. Debbie puts measurable effort into understanding the psychology behind what keeps people attached to things.
And Debbie's loving acceptance, her eagerness to learn about why people surround themselves with copious mounds of merchandise they'll never use, makes her such an amazing treasure.
It's a psychology class, spending time with Debbie, listening to what she does. Debbie takes rooms that are filled with mountains of filth and mess and turns them into organized, calming spaces. She does it by learning about her clients' comfort zones, discovering what makes them tick, and then gently, respectfully cleaning house.
When I was listening to Debbie, as we were slogging through what she'd convinced her clients they no longer needed, I couldn't help but personalize.
It's a thin line, that line between collecting and hoarding, between just enough and too much.
And I took a different look at what I've been accumulating after my Debbie time.
I realized not only that I need to thin my herd a bit. I do need to take the clutter down a notch.
And then I took the physical concept of hoarding a bit further, into the realm of time, of obligation.
Sometimes I feel like I'm pulled in so many directions that I don't steer straight toward any of them. I feel like I very ungracefully lurch to the nearest deadline, the most pressing need, the loudest voice.
Eventually I find myself trapped in this odd stasis, where I'm overwhelmed by all the things I need to do. And I wind up doing nothing.
It's overwhelming sometimes, this crazy game. Just like hoarders who navigate a crap-strewn path to bed each night, I feel I'm caught in the maze of obligation, task, directive, necessity. And when I see so many things I should be doing, like a hoarder who sees so many items that need to be thrown away, I just kick it into Avoidance mode and figure it will all get done eventually.
Debbie provides it for people who have accumulated more things than they can handle.
I'd love an organizational Debbie to sashay into my world and gently separate my wheat from my chaff.
Then we could bundle up all of those frustrating tasks, requirements and obligations and send them off to Goodwill to be purchased by someone else who would see their value.
How big of a box do you think we'd need?