New Year’s Resolutions

With the start of a new year, Anna Leah, the moderator of a hoarding support group in New York, has challenged each of her group members to throw away one thing every day.

This resolution seemed somewhat unfathomable to one of the group members who claims that ubiquitous store sales continuously sway her into buying things she doesn’t need. Currently, her closet is cluttered with stacks of shoes, many of which she has never worn. In an attempt to curb her shopping sprees, the group member recently placed a sign in her agenda that says, “No Buy.”

Another group member recently donated a large quantity of travel books that she saved for trips she never ended up taking. Upon donating the books, she received a “donation receipt,” which she said motivated her to give away the books.

While she has taken control of cleaning out some of her clutter, she still feels obligated to ask her brother, who occasionally lives with her, whether she can donate his overbearing stacks of canned-food, which she says he’ll never eat. Another group member stressed that it’s important for her take control of her own surroundings and scolded her for suggesting that she ask her brother first before discarding his hoarded food.

At the end of the meeting, Anna Leah suggested that this year her members make an effort to create an environment where they’ll have access to fresh air and safe surroundings. The group members should start by clearing items away from windows or air vents, and if their homes are extremely cluttered, the group members should clear a pathway so that they can safely roam throughout their home.

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