Hoarding vs. Letting go

Do other people here tend to hoard? I didn’t think I was a hoarder but I’m beginning to wonder.

When I was living mostly in my head a not paying attention to the life around me, I didn’t notice that my sis would take stuff that we didn’t use, box it up, list what was in it, date it and seal it and if neither one of us opened the box in a year and a half, she would merely donate the box.

Another few boxes have come due this month. A box of kitchen stuff, clothing, and books has been sealed and untouched for a year and a half. I’m actually beginning to panic about this. I was really upset with her for giving away our stuff. What if we need it. Why would she give away our stuff… She says that she and I are the charity case of the family and we have been given more stuff then we ever use.

Maybe I’m afraid to let go of this because I was once homeless. But she’s been doing this since she’s moved in. So why is it causing a panic now?
Are other people hoarders, or is it easy to let stuff go?

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Previously you were probably unaware that she did this. Now you are. Pretty amazing actually.

My son collects things. We all do. I had so many things that I had held on to for years. Slowly I just started letting them go and throwing them out.

Maybe try doing this together. Have a box that you can put the things that you want to hold on to the most. You can only keep one box. Decide which items you want the most. Then let go of the rest. Good luck.

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People who’ve lost everything in traumatic life events, like you being homeless, often develop strong attachments to their new-found personal belongings. That’s mostly a natural feeling.

But it becomes a hoarding problem when the quantity or quality of those belongings start affecting your quality of life. Such as cluttering your home, causing health hazards, or becoming obsessions.

You don’t seem to have any of those qualities. But maybe it is time to let go of those belongings, if they haven’t been used for over a year. Logically, you’ll likely never need them again.

I think that if you relax (take a long bath, or long walk), you’ll see your sister’s logic in donating these things. Right now, your emotions–not logic–are dictating your behavior.



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It’s sort of silly right now. One box she pulled out says, “rubber duck’s: full” I opened that one and she’s right… It’s just a file box filled with rubber duck of all sizes and types. She’s going to donate it to the community centers toy closet.

I actually want to keep them. Logically I don’t need over a 100 rubber ducks. But I hate the thought of her giving them away. It’s a silly time in the Mackenzie house right now. I’m trying not to get my nose out of joint about this. I have kept four. The rest should be for the toy closet.
Emotion vs. logic… :confused:

that sounds like a good idea, but i would still be very curious as to what was in the box, a last minute check would be all it would take, a glance just to make sure there was nothing of worth in there by accident,

i am not a hoarder but i do give things away normally to relatives if the novelty has worn off for me.

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because of stuff in my head, i would hoard then want minimalism in the house.
once when moving i took things e.g. sofa and stuff out of the house and burnt them and gave away most other things, my wife is very patient, i don’t do that any more ! much to her relief !
then i would want to paint the whole house black and then pink, my wife didn’t allow that !
so for sz yes , i think it is normal.
take care

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How did u acquire over 100 plastic ducks? Still remember? I think we do have a tendency to hoard. The process of acquiring the stuff in your boxes is perhaps worthing more of your attention.

I’ve been told the plastic ducks came from some odd summer party that my Aunt gave. When the party was over she gave us the ducks.

I see. Really, I think I would feel the same way you do. :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

I feel your pain. I didn’t think I had any hoarding tendencies until my husband pointed it out. Your plastic duck post made me smile because I know that if I had 100 plastic ducks…I would hold on to them too. It’s easy to get attached to things. I’ve been slowly making progress. I have to look at each item and ask myself:

  1. Do I NEED this? Can I live without it?
  2. Could this benefit someone else more than me?
  3. Is it the item that I want to keep or is the feeling/memory that I want to hold on to?

It is a bit time consuming when you do this for all of your stuff, but after awhile you start to recognize that some things are just “things” it gets a little easier.

As for the plastic ducks, there are a lot of children who would love to get one as a Christmas gift. You could make 100 children smile with one small donation.

Oh, I’ve also found that taking photos of things that I want to remember helps a lot, and photos take up a lot less room…

Good luck to you!

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I tend to hold on to stuff that I never use, but I learned afterwards that letting them go is a lot of comfort, like a heavy weight is lifted off me…and try to start fresh with new stuff.
I saw how my grandmother gathered stuff in her house, things that no one uses, when she died we didn’t really know what to do with them, they hold no emotional value and no actual usage value, we felt bad that she was buying those things just to fill her loneliness, I learned from her not to do what she did, may she have mercy on her soul.


I just counted 12 laundry detergent bottles stashed inside a closet + two powdered detergents.

I downsized after three moves and two yard sales. I still have more than enough and it bothers me for some reason. When I clear stuff out I tend to buy more. I’d like to have just what I need, Following my brother’s example I tossed out half of my tape collection indiscriminately. Now I miss my old Joan baez songs + Judy Collins + Nick Drake. For me it comes and goes.

How do you know what you need?

I asked my sis that, she said that’s why she labels and dates the boxes. If I really haven’t thought about it in over a year and a half, then I don’t need it.

She says we’re the charity case for the family. Our apartment is where old toasters, 14 can openers, extra pan lids and lamp shades and old clothing go to die.

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Were they empty or full bottles of detergent?

Gosh. I’m up to 21 bottles/powders now. :sunny:

8 bottles of this

5 boxes of this

5 bottles of this

3 bottles of Hawaiian Aloha- :sunny:


I hoard inwardly…

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