Barriers Behind Throwing Out Stuff & How-to Overcome Them

All this talk about learning how to help a hoarder these days finally inspired me. I got myself to get rid of the clutter that was in my room. It took me a couple of hours and a few trips down memory lane.

The problem is that tt took me forever to throw all of my junk out. I want to take a look at some barriers behind throwing out stuff and how you can help a hoarder…

What made it easier to find help for a hoarder?

Change in taste.

Your clothing style in high school varies greatly with your clothing style once you begin to move through your 20s. Tastes and preferences change. Sometimes life or that new career forces us to change styles or to cut that ponytail.

Change in size.

I didn’t technically lose any weight because I’m still around the same weight but due to various new training regimens that I’ve tried out over the years, my body build has changed. Some clothing is too small for me, while other pieces of clothing are way too large for me.

Why did it take me so long to find ways on how to help a hoarder? Why did I hold on my stuff for so long? There were certain psychological barriers and certain non-psychological barriers preventing me from throwing stuff out.

What’s the biggest challenge with figuring out how to help a hoarder?

Emotional attachment.

Every shirt or pair of pants I looked at it brought back memories. This also holds true for stuff around the house. I find that we all have a difficult time getting rid of certain stuff (see: junk) simply because we’ve had it for so long and it possesses sentimental value.

Religious reasons.

Being a Christian makes it difficult for me and my family to throw things out. My Mother keeps absolutely everything. She refuses to throw out anything. Regardless of your religious beliefs, many of us are raised to value and cherish our possessions.

Money invested.

I’ve been purchasing my own clothing ever since I started working as a teenager. Now I obviously earn more now, but back then some of those Ecko jeans shirts cost a lot of money on my student credit card. It’s so much easier to hold on to something than it is to throw it out. Every time we buy a new book, DVD, or random decoration for the pad, we’ve spent money on it that we pretty much will never get back in full. This in turn creates a barrier for us and we end up keeping junk way longer than we should.

Getting Rid of Junk

How to help a hoarder?

You start by looking at the benefits of donating to charity and family.

We have relatives that live in other countries that don’t live in the best of conditions. Whenever clothing doesn’t fit one of us or we simply don’t wear it any more then we put it into a box. Once we have a couple of boxes full of clothing, my Mom wraps it all up and sends a big package overseas. This certainly beats throwing out the clothes and someone else benefits from this.

If you don’t have any relatives to pass down your clothing to, charity donation is the next best thing. In my area there are many Goodwill drop-off boxes. If you can’t find any then you can always give the company a call and in most cases they will come to your home to pick everything up.

Think of time as money if you really want to help a hoarder.

You pay lots of money for your home (mortgage, interest, repairs, etc.) or for your apartment (rent and appliances). A portion of this expensive space is now being used to store junk. That may seem a little messed up but it’s how I see it. Do you really want keep all of that junk or would you like to turn the “storage” room into your own office?

You can hold a yard sale to help a hoarder make some money.

It’s true that one man’s junk is another man’s treasure. This is why a garage sale is the perfect way to get rid of your clutter/junk while making some money. Everyone knows how a yard sale works so I won’t bother explaining it to you. It’s a good excuse to spend a nice summer morning outdoors, meet the neighbors, and sell your stuff. It can be just like finding a part-time job.

You just need to throw stuff out eventually.

At the end of the day, the best way to get rid of clutter is to just do it. There’s just some crap that you can’t sell or can’t even identify (broken skateboards) and all you can do is get rid of it. On a warm summer morning I called a friend that runs a waste disposal business and ordered a large waste bin for the day. We loaded up the bin with all of our junk and a couple of hours later it was all gone. I realize that it may seem counter-productive to pay to get rid of junk. You won’t care because you’ll be too busy with trying to figure out how you can turn your now empty garage into a bachelor room.

At first learning how to help a hoarder can feel like trying to figure out how the stock market works. When you dig deeper, you realize that there’s nothing to worry about.

1 thought on “Barriers Behind Throwing Out Stuff & How-to Overcome Them”

  1. If you post your yard sale on Craigslist, you’ll have many more people show up. You can also post “yard sale leftovers” on Craigslist altogether to get rid of whatever doesn’t sell. My friends cleared out all their extra stuff by using both of these methods.

    I like to Craigslist anything worth more than $20 by itself and donate all clothing and everything else to Goodwill.

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