The season has begun... I have been sneaking packages into the house and hiding them... sure the "big day" will be fun, but what about afterwards? Where will these things "live" in my house?
Those are questions I am much more mindful of this year.
And one other BIG question that I encourage everyone to PLEASE think about... How many evil toxins are going to be created by the batteries needed this year? Last year I went through boxes of AA, AAA and 9V to keep our goodies humming and blinking.
Batteries are a big pet peeve for me, and they put the friggin' things in EVERYTHING these days from action figures to razors to toothbrushes. I've gotten to the point of wanting to scream in the stores "JUST BECAUSE YOU CAN PUT BATTERIES IN IT DOESN'T MEAN YOU SHOULD!" Do you think everyone takes these tiny button cells out of the free happy-toy and disposes of them in a responsible manner? ya. right.
Batteries are convenient, portable and powerful.... but they are toxic, environmentally very destructive to manufacture and difficult to dispose of... so why are we putting them in every gizmo they will fit into? Why are they cramming them into things that aren't even enhanced by them?
I am calling for a "No Batteries Christmas" this year.
Is it even possible? So far so good. I haven't bought or asked for anything that needs them (but it's been very difficult in some cases). My usual stocking stuffers are mini flashlights and blinking bouncy balls. NOT THIS YEAR.
Are you with me?
First I need to assume you know which shows I am talking about.... there is "HOARDERS" on A&E and "HOARDING: Buried Alive" on TLC. They are similar in that they about extreme cases of Hoarding (not just too much collecting or a laundry problem) they cover desperate situations each episode and some of the homes are tragic disasters, with animal problems and structural hazards.
I have to stop watching these shows.
Not only do I feel so sorry for the emotional trauma these people are dealing with, I feel fear for them and I come close to a physical illness as the TV people pan through the most intimate and disgusting corners of these people's dwellings. It's BAD and it's a kind of ugly voyeurism into a damaged person's mind.
I am not being too harsh here.
Every single one of the show's participant's had some unresolved traumatic experienced that spiralled out of control on them. And the ones that are actually helped are the ones that respond to the counselling and fix the problems in their heads, not the forced clean-up/gut-out on their homes.
But I'm not going to stop watching just because I think the show is too intrusive or sensationalist -- after all, I think if there are people being helped by this exposure then it should keep going by all means! I have to stop watching because it is influencing my own view of my own stuff, and I don't think in a way that is productive.
Call it a personality flaw, but I am happy with "better" as one of my rules for life.
If whatever I am working on works better or looks better than when I started, then it is a success for me. Also if someone can do something significantly better than me, I'd rather they do it and I'll encourage them to do it too (not too competitive am I?). My task/goal/project doesn't have to be "perfect" or even "the best", it just has to be better than it was to make me feel very happy indeed. And I get a lot out of the small, incremental victories.
Can you see where I'm going with this?
..... my idea of a terrific space is vastly different from these hoarder's spaces. But right now my home looks way "better" than theirs, so it is kind of deflating my forward decluttering momentum because it's not nearly as bad as all that!!!! I need to get better than where I am now, not just feel that I am doing better than them.... otherwise I will fall backwards for sure.
I have to remind myself that I am decluttering for space, peace and balance in my life, not just to have a less clutter or avoid hoarding.