A New Kind of Hoarder: Could This Be You?
Editor's Note: Hoarders conjure up images of houses packed with junk. This kind of hoarding, the compulsive hoarding of things, can be a sign of a serious mental illness. But hoarding can also be a metaphor for the ways we work against our own happiness. It can happen when we hold on to intangibles—for example, when we cling to our past, or stay in toxic relationships when we really should give them the heave-ho. Here, Colleen explains how this kind of hoarding can mess with your mental health, too. --Judy
Have you ever seen that show Hoarders? It’s quite an appalling show at first glance. People have literally buried themselves in filth; old newspapers, take-out food from 1996, dead cats. I’ve watched this show and thought, Oh good God. HOW does that HAPPEN?! But not too long ago, it hit me: I’m a hoarder. I’m not a hoarder of tangible, material items, but of shoulds and obligations.