The month of May is to help raise awareness to mental health, and people with hoarding disorder fall in that category. There may be a house you’re trying to sell or buy, a neighboring house on your street, or perhaps it’s someone you know and love that deals with this issue. Either way, if they decide to free themselves and seek support, IREP Junk Removal will treat the person with kindness, and properly dispose of and find homes for their items.
We picked up a week long hauling job for someone with hoarder disorder, not because we gave the cheapest bid, we didn’t, but we treated the person with kindness. These individuals need to be dealt with delicately because it is not easy for them, and we understand that. About 2.5% of the general population of people meet the criteria for hoarding disorder, with similar rates found in men and women across developed countries.
Hoarding disorder is marked by three major characteristics.
Difficulty Letting Go
While feeling mental pain and conflict, hoarders don’t feel right when throwing something out. The same thing happens to smokers, or drug addicts trying to quit. Even shoppers with “sticker shock” are hit in the same area. The more those regions are activated, the more they feel anxious and uncomfortable. This motivates a person to seek relief, and hoarders get relief by holding on to things. It can make them feel safer, or calmer, which that in of itself is addictive.
Hoarders often have an irrational conviction that something old and useless could have potential value in the future. The conflicting idea that they might need something, but have gotten rid of it, is painful. They don’t see their junk as junk, so it’s hard for them to get it removed.
People who suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder don’t really trigger the same brain circuit as hoarder disorder. Obsessions and compulsions are a response to the “something’s wrong” signal. Even though it may be a faulty habit of the brain, the mind searches for something to explain the feeling. OCD people can settle on irrational beliefs and behaviors. If they wash their hands, touch a wall three times, or repeat a mental mantra, they seem to “prevent” whatever harm their brain was expecting (though it doesn’t actually happen). Hoarding may be closer to ADHD, or depression, rather than OCD.
You don’t have to be a hoarder, or have OCD to know what it feels like to not throw out a favorite shirt, a gift you never used, birthday/Christmas cards, or every craft from when your kids were in grade school. Mindfulness of our own brain habits gives us more control over our choices. The technique of “surfing the urge” helps addicts resist cravings, and dieters resist temptation. It may also help us deal with the anxiety about getting rid of clutter. Taking a skeptical view of our impulses can help us distinguish between actual strength, and the lies your brain tells you.
Hoarders vs Collectors
Collectors are organized, know the value of things, and can be proud of the things they collect. There’s a method to the madness. Hoarders think they’re normal as they pile things, barely leave a path, and don’t think twice about whether it’s healthy. They keep doing what they are doing until there’s no room left, not even seeing the impact it has on their daily life. Some warning signs are if someone skips work because they can’t navigate through their house, they only eat microwave dinners because the stove is full of papers, or sleep on the couch because they can’t reach the bed.
“I feel so relieved. So much better.”The client after the job was complete.
Hoarders are in extreme distress. Wiping the slate clean is easier said than done. Like an addict becoming sober, they need to come off of it easily, and you can’t force it to happen. They need to make the choice themselves. Don’t remove anything without their consent because it could back fire, and then resent you for a long period of time. You shouldn’t clean up after them (it could keep them from seeing deeper issues), enable the behavior (buy things for them), or expect progress overnight (our job took a little over a week). Just know that when they do decide to seek help, they won’t be able to get rid of EVERYTHING. They’ll feel the need to hold on to some stuff.
What Can You Do?
One thing IREP can do to help is send a mail-out for an entire street offering clean out services, and when they meet with us, we will comfort and relieve them of much stress. On top of that, we have the ability to offer referrals of businesses that can help them get organized. That way if they keep things, it won’t look cluttered.
You do want to encourage them to seek professional help. Take some time to research the disorder through sources like the Mayo Clinic, National Alliance on Mental Illness, and the American Depression and Anxiety Association of America. Listen to them without judgement. If they come to you for help, be willing and able to serve while giving recognition to the positive change. Kindness, love, and support will go a very long way with these individuals. Once steps are taken to get help, rid themselves of unnecessary items, and clean up, they will light up and let out a sigh of relief (which we’ve established can be addictive, but the good kind).
IREP assists in this area because we are experienced to do so. It also sets up optimistic thoughts when people realize that I Recycle Everything Possible. They will feel comfortable in the fact that these items are useful in some way, and not tossed to be forgotten. We “maximize space, while minimizing waste.” There is some value in that.
- IREP Junk Removal Austin The post Unlocking the Secrets to Stress-Free Junk Removal in Austin! appeared first on IREP Junk Removal Austin.
- IREP Junk Removal Austin Holidays are a time for joy, festivities, and coming together with loved ones. However, amidst the cheer and celebration, there's an often-overlooked aspect—the environmental impact of our holiday habits. Let's take a closer look at the numbers and delve into how our festivities may be affecting the world around us and […]
- IREP Junk Removal Austin Are you tired of the traditional dumpster drama and looking for a revolutionary solution to handle your property's waste management? Look no further – IREP Junk Removal is here to turn your trash troubles into triumphs! As the future leader of valet trash service in Austin and beyond, we're on a […]
- IREP Junk Removal Austin Are you drowning in a sea of valuable items that you no longer need or want? Do you wish there was a way to declutter your life while making a profit and contributing to a cleaner, greener future for the younger generations? Look no further! IREP Junk Removal, your local hero […]
- IREP Junk Removal Austin This concept is at the heart of what makes IREP Junk Removal your top choice for handling junk removal. So, let's dive into why IREP's full load of junk removal is your best solution over most competitors in the greater Austin area. The post AFLANCE – All Full Loads Are Not Created […]
- IREP Junk Removal Austin In the holiday season, sales soar and customers flood stores. Along with this frenzy comes retail waste. Pallets, trash, and other unwanted items can pile up. The post 4 Facts About Streamlining Holiday Retail Waste Removal appeared first on IREP Junk Removal Austin.
- IREP Junk Removal Austin Japan's decision to dump radioactive waste into the water sparks global outrage and pushes a junk removal company mission. The post Japan & Junk Removal Company’s Mission to Save the World appeared first on IREP Junk Removal Austin.
- IREP Junk Removal Austin As the Austin, TX population surges and environmental concerns take center stage, the call for eco-friendly junk removal for apartments and other residential and commercial locations resonates louder than ever before. The post The Ultimate Guide to Eco-Friendly Junk Removal for Apartments appeared first on IREP Junk Removal Austin.
- IREP Junk Removal Austin There’s been a lot of talk about illegal dumping frustrations, and quite frankly we can expect it to get worse. There are a few ways it could affect your community, and things you can do to help resolve the issue on a number of levels. Some can misconstrue the dumping effects […]
- IREP Junk Removal Austin A quick scan of the news or even outside the window during your daily commute will tell you that pollution is all around us. There may seem to be no way to escape the pollution, but that is simply not true. With combined efforts and various initiatives, we can all help […]