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Hoarding Help Message Boards : The Daily Chat : Hoard No More workshop
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Hoard No More workshop

Posted: 19 January 2014 - 11:29 AM
Falling back into hoarding behavour after you have dug yourself out...

Digging out, sorting and organizing all the years worth of clutter and put off decision making, I keep telling you to feel your emotions and work through them.
It is uncomfortable and unpleasant to feel the negative emotions so we all tend to avoid doing things that bring them up and then we end up living with too much stuff.
But once you face your fears, feel the regret and get through it you are changed.
Decluttering this way can/will make you stronger
but only if you do the emotional/mental work along with the physical work.
Change is not easy and only comes when you first change your mind set.
Fear of falling back is a great indicator to me that you will not reclutter. Fear will keep you motivated to keep moving on into the bright new future.
Having and keeping a clear and clean home is a goal that everyone can achieve but only when it is something that is our heart's true desire and we are willing to do all the hard work to get & keep it.
Know thy self...
remember all your triggers and do other more positive activities when tempted to shop or neglect daily maintenance. (((HUGS)))

Posted: 18 January 2014 - 10:59 AM
Good morning Tillie and Barb. Thanks for posting your thoughts on the time it takes. Yesterday I was aware of how difficult it is to make decisions still. I am improving, still working on it. I have homes for things and find myself feeling unsettled if they are not in their, this is a huge change for me, and I am so grateful I am changing even if slowly. Also aware I have unlimited energy when working outside, and energy like the 65 year old I am, when working inside. Just have to accept this and do some indoor things inside before heading outside, like dishes, and a few things I don't enjoy as much as outside projects. The fact that most of us will return to hoarding behaviors, the book says, really keeps me focused on progress, so scared that could happen to most of us, don't ever want to go back to that, so need to catch it early if sliding back.
Posted: 18 January 2014 - 09:27 AM
You are so right.
Since most of us are here working alone, by our selves, we must make realistic time tables.
The problem when looking at a LOT of stuff to get through we tend to think it will take longer than it actually can/will.
One of the reasons things get so out of hand is because decision making has been put off for years because hoarders have trouble with making decisions.
Worry/fear of the "what if" keeps people holding on to items.
That is why it is always baby steps to begin with.
As you get used to making the keep/toss decisions you get better and faster at it and the pace will quicken.
Also, any time that you find you have a helper to help declutter or someone to haul away stuff for you, use them.
Allow yourself to trust someone else to do some work for you.
We don't have to do it all alone and any help we can find will make it go much faster.
Main point is to start, keep working on it daily even if some days it is only a few 15 minute sessions and it will get done. :D
Posted: 17 January 2014 - 05:06 PM
Some food for thought:
When I was in my twenties, I seemed to have boundless energy and unlimited stamina.
I did go in with my mom and clean up my grandparents 15 room farmhouse after squatters trashed it. We got it done in a few days. I went into my Mom's house after Dad died and she was going through depression. I got her caught up on laundry (5 loads), filled her refrigerator and freezer with food, and cleaned her house in a weekend. Then I went home, cleaned our house, grocery shopped, did laundry, and all the things i habitually did to care for my own family. Although these were strenuous weekends, I could bounce back rather quickly.
I have had to come to the realization that I don't have that level of energy and I don't bounce back that quickly anymore. I have to pace myself. Wanting to get my house completely decluttered in a month by myself is not going to happen. I tried at the beginning to keep up a frantic pace every day and it just did not work for me. i wore myself out and made myself sick.
My point is: KNOW YOURSELF. If you have the energy and stamina to get it done in a month, go for it. If you need three months or if you come to the point where you need outside help, do it. Keep working steadily but keep tabs on what you can realistically accomplish in a day, in a week, in a month. Stuff happens in life to interrupt your best plans. Goals are good, but be flexible when you need to be. Don't beat yourself up. Keep your eye on the prize and you will make progress.

Posted: 16 January 2014 - 01:18 PM
In the hoard no more rescue book,
page 27
talking about how long it will take you to declutter....
If you set a date for one year, it will take you one year to declutter because you will make decisions that make you right.
If you set a date of one month and work day & night and do everything possible to get it done in one month then it will take a month.
To get decluttered in a short amount of time you have to have the mindset to make quick decisions and only handle items once, no churning, no getting lost in old memories of when you got the item.
Some people decide they have had enough! of living this way and are able to hire a company like Cory's who come in and do all the boxing/bagging up and heavy lifting to get it all out while you stand there and say keep/toss/donate. Takes one to two days and it is done.
Fast decluttering of a home is very possible.
I have decluttered a three bedroom house in six days with the help of the clutterer making all the decisions as to what stays.
This did not include the time to do all the deep cleaning but once all the excess was removed the cleaning was much easier to do and needed repairs were able to be done.
I had set a time limit of one week and in less than that time it was done.
The hard part about doing this decluttering all on your own alone is that you don't have someone you trust at your side helping you to make the right decisions quickly and keeping you from hyper focusing on things or getting lost in your thoughts.
This is why it is important to set a timer or put on some music.
You concentrate on one area, working on it until the timer dings or one or two songs have played.
Timed work sessions will keep you focused on the task at hand.
Get as much finished as fast as you can to beat the clock.
Make faster decisions on the items. Practice will help you get faster at decision making.
Always keep in mind the goal a clear & clean home that is peaceful and serene, your haven. :D
Posted: 15 January 2014 - 11:55 AM
I have been reading the Hoarding book every nite before sleep. Last night was reading about the feelings of worthlessness most of us feel. The depression we struggle with, over sensitive to others comments and the high rate of hoarding reocurring. It talked about the best therapy CBT that has us take a look at our self defeating thinking and changing that thinking. Example for me, "I always quit before finishing, I always fail" would be "I am now finishing each room, and keeping rooms organized." Seems so simple, but I notice a shift in my feelings when I change thoughts. "I have a difficult time making decisions" is a big one for me. Let's see, "I make decisions that make my life better." I will try that today. In the book it talks about perfectionism. I don't see myself as a perfectionist, since I just threw stuff in piles, and now noticed I was mentally correcting spelling errors and sentence structure in hoarding book!!!!
And the thoughts that my clutter busting isn't good enough, and changing that to it is good enough because I am comfortable in this room now.
Posted: 11 January 2014 - 06:44 PM
P.S. Now I have to find a home for my Hoard No More materials so they don't get lost in the clutter! LOL
Posted: 11 January 2014 - 06:40 PM
It got up to 38 here today and most of the snow melted away. We had regular mail delivery late this afternoon which Hoard No More Kit came!
I read through the Rescue Book. Most of it is information I already have read on this website. I looked through the Rescue Workbook. There are several helpful sections in this that I will use. I haven't had a chance yet to view the CDs or DVD.
I love the last page of the workbook. I am going to photocopy it and post it on a prominent wall where I can see it every morning as I start my day. It says:
"A Promise
Some day you will live a life less cluttered.
Some day you will wake up in a house that is orderly and peaceful.
You will have a home that is comfortable to entertain in. You will not be under the thumb of guilt that makes you feel like you don't deserve to have any fun.
You will be in control of your life, and you will no longer be a person that lives in chaos.
You can beat this, you can live a new way, you can live the life you want to live because you have the time, space, and peace of mind to do so."
I lived that way once. I know it is possible for me to live this way again. I'll just keep plugging away at it one day at a time.
Enjoy your weekend everyone.
Posted: 10 January 2014 - 01:27 PM
Thanks Dave :) (((hugs))
Posted: 10 January 2014 - 10:42 AM
Maybe that's the RULE OF ONE for which one could hold up one finger as a reminder. I think maybe I need to try that myself!
Posted: 10 January 2014 - 10:36 AM

We do not have to accept all the role models our family and extended family set for us. I know that I am not seeing the extent of your challenges through your eyes, but I will stick with that statement-change is possible.

Please remember things that you have read in the what are you doing today thread and postings on the Sunday night chat if you have been on that.

Please PLease Please do not think you are the only person dealing with stuff that does not experience emotions that get them stuck or the only person who experiences setbacks along with progress.

One day, one thing, one thought at a time is the way you CAN and WILL change.
Posted: 10 January 2014 - 10:22 AM
Each time I read things like this my heart goes out to you. When I read your comments I know that they come from a depth of life experiences that I cannot even begin to imagine.

I pray that you will continue to have the faith, hope and courage you need each day.
Posted: 05 January 2014 - 01:14 PM
Now that I have had a chance to read and listen to the Hoard No More material I would like us to get started on having discussions.
Where would you all like to begin?
How about us starting with the Rescue Book?
In the begining it talks about the financial cost of hoarding.
His hoarding has cost us a LOT of money.
Bills get buried under the clutter on & around his desk and go unpaid.
Costing us dearly to have the services turned back on.
Because the property is so full of clutter it was impossible to have our septic system serviced regularly.
That cost us 3K to have fixed after going years with raw sewage pooling up in the side yard.
Every year I have to buy a lot of wasp spray because the clutter provides many hiding places for the wasps to nest. And the wasp spray also kills the black widow spiders.
The thousands of dollars spent acquiring objects that he then just leaves to rot & ruin in the hoard.
There are a lot of other structural issues now to the house because there is no money to fix things as needed so the damage only worsens.
But the biggest loss we have from his hoarding is in quality of life.
His being so focused on acquiring and living with his possessions that he has lost sight of the finer things in life, stuff money can't buy.
Posted: 30 December 2013 - 03:12 PM
Like a good hoarder, I am procrastinating reading this, guess I could try cd so could keep doing stuff and learn. How are you doing with it Tillie? It stopped me when I read we have a basic need for certainty and uncertainty. I am quite sure I need certainty, but instead of uncertainty, how about variety. "Uncertainty" brings up too many memories of bad things happening out of my control, like being strangled to unconsciousness by a stranger at 5pm. Then uncertain of my safety, so push everyone away. Variety is a better word, then have more choice in matters. As I write this I realize how silly it is to stop reading out of fear of feelings it will bring up. To be continued-------
Posted: 30 December 2013 - 01:25 PM
Cory, I don't know if it's possible but a topic of involving "hard times" that causes a hoarder to hoard might be intersting. For someone not knowing what the "hard times" for the hoarder are it would be nice to know what topics they could be. What else could be the cause for the disorder possibly, I have to re-read and relisten.
Posted: 29 December 2013 - 03:18 AM
I am so glad that you have developed the Hoard No More materials. I listened to the first chapter online. I am not ready yet to share it with my family. They all live out of state. I visit them; they do not visit me. They are all busy with their own families and have no idea that I live like this.
Cory Chalmers
Posted: 28 December 2013 - 10:55 AM
Thank you for starting this thread Tillie. I will let the authors of the book know about this so they can see the feedback and make necessary changes to future edits. No better way to improve it, then read what customers are saying about it. Let us know what you think it is missing or where there could be further help available to you so we can provide additional information. Have a great day! I am in Colorado and not supposed to be working on this trip so I am logging off :)
Posted: 27 December 2013 - 10:28 AM
Great idea. We would benefit from discussing the Rescue kit. Also would keep us moving on our successes, not stuck in problem. Could learn more coping skills from the discussions I think.
Posted: 27 December 2013 - 10:25 AM
Lynn good you tried, but it is just more evidence that your job is getting your life on track, not using energy on mom.
Since you are so aware of the hoarding issues, how about putting ads up at senior center to help hoarders clean up? You could do the first few for free, then start charging. there is such a need for people with your skills to help hoarders that are willing, and you need your own place.
Posted: 26 December 2013 - 08:02 PM
For me it is useless as well. She does not want to talk about it AT ALL. But on the up side I did learn a little more about the OCD symptoms and as well as the symptoms she truely shows.

I did give her the address to this website but she is not willing to visit.
Still digging in quicksand pit with a stick, getting absolutely no where but "buried". :(
Posted: 26 December 2013 - 02:45 PM
I was thinking that a thread would be nice where we can all discuss the things we learn in the Hoard No More series.
I would be very interested in hearing your thoughts and feedback.
Even people who don't have the series could be able to follow along with us and contribute to this discussion. :D
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