Sunday, September 13, 2015

Change Lessons from Hoarders

finished my stone walkway
In my last post I mentioned two favorite organizing people. The first is Donna Smallin Kuper.
Who's the other person? Matt Paxton
Hoarders anyone? It was the freakiest, coolest show. Aired on A&E, it chronicled the attempt to help hoarders when they were against the wall due to whatever—landlords, city ordinances, health, whoever. And the weird thing is, they weren’t all crazy cat people—though many had a few hundred cats. They were just people. Most were people who had bad stuff happen to trigger the hoarding.
Matt (and others) cleaned out their houses but the crew also helped sort their lives as well. They cleaned but the hoarder had to make the decision to let things go. It was the only way to break the cycle. 
I like Matt because he’s real. He knows what needing help is all about. He’s a good cleaner, but he's also got his own interesting story of addiction. As he alludes to, all he’s done is trade one addiction for another, but at least this one doesn't get his kneecaps broken intentionally.
Another sad lesson from this is many of the people who hoard have others in their lives—family and friends who suspected but didn’t jump in. Oh, that’s not an indictment. It’s just a comment. I always wondered “how did they let it get that far?”

So, what’s this all about?
I find it ironic that Matt’s who I wanted to post about on Wednesday and now I find myself on Sunday evening still trying to get this posted. I'm so far behind!
It’s about perseverance and fortitude to make the changes you want. It doesn’t matter how far you’ve gotten into the rut.  You can do it!
Change means sacrifice and letting go. On the show some people just couldn’t do it.  But some were able to change their homes and their lives.
So, even though I’m late, I’m still going to hang in there.  I’m still posting this.

Lessons from Matt and Hoarders
(don’t try to Google them—I’m making them up)
 1. Don't forget your friends and family--especially those who live alone.
 2. Be patient with yourself. Nobody's perfect and on time every time.
 3. We all need a little help from our friends sometimes.
 4. But sometimes we will be alone, no matter who we call.

cleaned out my truck--
does anybody know this pony?
5. In the end the decisions are ours alone.
 6. There are ordinances on the number of cats you can have.
 7. Nobody allows coyotes to be kept. (well, that was my discovery)

Lasting change takes time.
The two questions we have to ask ourselves:
1. Do I want to change?
2. What am I willing to let go of for it?

p.s.--my house is not a hoarder house, but Clean Sweep would have fun in it.

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