Just coming to this forum makes me anxious - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 28 Old 10-07-2010, 10:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Does anyone else have this problem? Just coming here makes me anxious. Sometimes I have weeks where I can't even peek at these threads. It isn't the thought of my stuff being gone that scares me, it's the actual process of going through it and getting rid of it - boxing it up, taking it out, that scares me. 1) There is SO much. 2) DH and 7 yo DD don't like to give anything up. 3) It's hard to figure out where to begin.

I just thought I would put that out there.

I have the opportunity to go for a job in another state, close to mine AND DH's family and I intially turned down the interview because I couldn't process the idea of moving. We have so much stuff, I thought we could NEVER move. When we bought the house, we did say it was our forever house and had no plans to move. But I've always said that if a job closer to family fell in my lap, I'd take. And now one sort of is and the STUFF kept me from considering it. THAT is scary.

Third generation WOHM. I work by choice.
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#2 of 28 Old 10-07-2010, 10:50 AM
 
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I had the same problem, I was lurking for more than .... at least 6 months... before I actually started to take very small steps to tackle my issues

am not so anxious about reading threads by now
(I actually like to see/recognise the names of people who have answered, I can usually sort of predict what they will have suggested so somehow, I'm learning the facts ... somewhere deep down )
.... but still very slow in acting out good advice

anyway, it's better to do a little rather than nothing ...
(it's just going to take me way more time than it does take other people !)
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#3 of 28 Old 10-07-2010, 11:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Crayfish's post about anxiety from this thread: (#9) is really helpful.

http://www.mothering.com/discussions....php?t=1263684

I just need to pick some areas and go for it. It probably won't be that bad.

One thing about this forum is there are 2 kinds of people - the really neat ones looking for better ideas - and those of us ... umm (with a problem or maybe still learning is better). I like hearing about the "still learning kind", but sometimes, those really neat people, give me anxiety because I feel like I *should* be doing that. You'd think the thread for messy people would be good, but it scared me reading it.

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#4 of 28 Old 10-07-2010, 11:23 AM
 
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I understand. I get anxious going through children's clothes and toys. Thinking I may need them, or stuck on a memory that I have with an outfit.

The tip I got that helped....was to take pictures of items.....so you can keep the picture (I stored them on my computer) then to let someone else get use out of them.

In the past couple months I have gotten rid of 20 bags of stuff.

I try to make a goal. Like two bags a week.

You CAN do it!
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#5 of 28 Old 10-07-2010, 03:44 PM
 
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If you are moving, I actually find it easier. I box up the stuff I want to take in each room, then sort the rest. I am ruthless about it. You can do this without moving as well, but take it room by room, and reinvent what it is you DO want in each room. Do whatever you need to with the rest- just get it out the door one way or another.
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#6 of 28 Old 10-07-2010, 05:02 PM
 
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I hear ya. I waffle back and forth. I go through "OMG GET RID OF ALL THIS STUFF, NOW!!!!!!" and then back to "omg, how am I ever going to get through stuff??" My advice? start small. Toss a couple things. The next day see how you feel.

I find that once I *start* tossing stuff, it gets kind of addictive... like "what *else* can I get rid of?"

Jenna ~ mommy to Sophia Elise idea.gif  (1/06), Oliver Matthew  blahblah.gif (7/07) and Avery Michael fly-by-nursing1.gif(3/10)

 

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#7 of 28 Old 10-07-2010, 07:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, everyone. I'm not actually moving yet. I'm considering interviewing for a job.

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#8 of 28 Old 10-07-2010, 07:38 PM
 
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I get overwhelmed if I try to look at the whole apartment at once. I have to break it up into areas. Like cupboards first, then closets, then drawers.. Or go room by room. I find if I go room by room though I tend to get discouraged and stop.. Or I get it done and it gets trashed again and I give up.

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#9 of 28 Old 10-07-2010, 10:58 PM
 
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I am fairly neat (although my H is NOT!). But moving gives me panic attacks like no other. The amount of stuff we would have to get rid of, OMG.

Anyway, are you stuck right now? Do you want me to throw out some ideas? When I get stuck I do the best if I just start on one small project (like 1 single box to clean out, not even a whole room!).

Either that or I get the kids out of my hair and tackle a big project (like organizing all my crafts or the whole kitchen or all the kids clothes- all of those are panic inducing) all at once. Works for me bc I start by taking every single thing out and laying it all out, so then I am committed to actually finishing the project.

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#10 of 28 Old 10-08-2010, 01:25 AM
 
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I used to hang out at a forum that was more for severe hoarders, and although I am inclined to keep a lot of stuff, I didn't feel I belonged on that site as they had extreme problems, so I stopped posting there.

When I came here, I felt a little out of place in a way too because there seemed to be some minimalists who had zero stuff in their houses, but now I have realised that I don't have to be a minimalist or someone who is already at their 'goal weight' so to speak....I am just on a journey towards making my life better, not to become a minimalist, just to get things under control and learn how to keep it that way.

It's hard not to compare ourselves to others, I am guilty of that too. Sometimes if I look at photos people put up of their beautiful houses, I feel sad and jealous, so I am trying to keep that in perspective and appreciate how fortunate I am just to own my own home even if it is not such a pretty one.

Baby steps are important...even if I have a bad day I give myself a pat on the back if I did one or two small things that day.

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#11 of 28 Old 10-08-2010, 05:25 AM
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people seem to have different levels of anxiety about all kinds of things. please do not take this the wrong way, but when you wrote "i'm considering taking an interview." i did, in fact, laugh out loud.

i wasn't laughing at you, but just the recognition that i must seem like some kind of wild, extremist risk taker, even though i don't feel that way personally. i just feel normal.

anyway, you know, take a deep breath. you are a long way from accepting a job offer, so there's no harm (and no need for forward progress in decluttering) in going for a job interview. no need to stack that anxiety into the whole interviewing mix.

also, i agree, moving makes it easier to declutter. you think "do i really want to haul this over there? it will cost me $x amount to move it, whereas, if i sell it, it will earn me $x amount. if i have to replace it, that's Y. see what the differences are, you know? but it's so much easier when you move.

but, if you are not moving, just take it easy. you have time.
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#12 of 28 Old 10-08-2010, 07:58 AM
 
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DH works for a containership company so we moved twice and could have the whole of a big container to ourselves ... first move was from a small flat so it was rather OK, the second move was from a house 4 times the size of that flat & after another baby so I had not been in the mindframe to declutter before the move & didn't have to worry about the cost = bad equation !

it's only now that the youngest has started school that I start to feel "sort of ready" time wise .... but not always emotionaly-wise to really start decluttering ...

+ instead of getting on with it I'm actually reading about it ... again !

should get going ...am too MDC addicted for my own good/to keep up with that project !
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#13 of 28 Old 10-08-2010, 09:06 AM
 
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I get overwhelmed,start spinning and then get stuck.One day when I was spinning,my husband talked me down and then I made a list.A list of where everything in my house should go.Not every tiny item but things like suitcases,clothes for my daughter to grow into,lightbulbs...The list is on my fridge(that's right,I have clutter on my fridge) and when I start to get stuck because I don't know what to do with this stuff,I look at the list.It also helped me decide what I really want because when I come across an item that isn't on the list(baby bath tub)I realize I don't have a place for that so it needs to go.

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#14 of 28 Old 10-08-2010, 10:29 AM
 
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Start small & move forward. I joined the 2010 challenge because it meant 5.5 things to part with every day...that could be recycling items, stained/ripped things, etc. Easy peasy stuff to get rid of. I am so proud for being close to the goal in October. It makes me feel like a better mom & wife to know that my environment & home is getting easier to live in than worse.

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#15 of 28 Old 10-08-2010, 11:14 AM
 
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I think visiting this forum more often helps motivate me, when i don't come here for months then i usually don't declutter. I still can't believe i got rid of all my yardsale items wednesday. I had been having about 2 a year with my sister, and only had 3-4 boxes plus 3-4 bags in the garage, but it just was bothering me, and a thread on here motivated me to just donate it. I feel much better about doing so, and honestly once you get the courage to start, you keep looking for more to part with. I think that always being in decluttering mode also prevents you from bringing more stuff into your home. When I am not in decluttering mode, things have a way of sneaking in. So right now I am keeping track of what we need as a family and trying not to deter from that list.

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#16 of 28 Old 10-08-2010, 01:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by zoebird View Post
people seem to have different levels of anxiety about all kinds of things. please do not take this the wrong way, but when you wrote "i'm considering taking an interview." i did, in fact, laugh out loud.
Well, I didn't want to take the interview if I had no intention of moving. I did the phone interview and now they want to fly me out there. I'm TOTALLY on the fence about this. DH and I have been in the midwest for 25 years. Do we really want to move to expensive East Coast? Both of our families are there. We have NO family here. I'm totally freaking about them flying me there.

But on the other hand, we are old and our children are aging and I feel like we are running out of time to move back. DD is in second grade and we have a baby. I don't want to move her in Jr. High.

No offense taken, BTW.

Third generation WOHM. I work by choice.
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#17 of 28 Old 10-31-2010, 12:13 AM
 
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Me too!

Mama to 9 so far:Mother of Joey (20), Dominick (13), Abigail (11), Angelo (8), Mylee (6), Delainey (3), Colton (2) and Baby 8 and Baby 9 coming sometime in July 2013.   If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!

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#18 of 28 Old 11-01-2010, 02:26 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellien C View Post
Well, I didn't want to take the interview if I had no intention of moving. I did the phone interview and now they want to fly me out there. I'm TOTALLY on the fence about this. DH and I have been in the midwest for 25 years. Do we really want to move to expensive East Coast? Both of our families are there. We have NO family here. I'm totally freaking about them flying me there.

But on the other hand, we are old and our children are aging and I feel like we are running out of time to move back. DD is in second grade and we have a baby. I don't want to move her in Jr. High.

No offense taken, BTW.
The thought of moving made me anxious for a long time and then DH took a new job less than a mile from my job (but 35+ miles from where we lived). We had very little family time/life since we both spent so much time in the car.

Eventually, after looking at almost every house in town we found a place (a rental we looked at both renting and buying). We moved about two weeks ago and so far it's been great. We really like the new place despite being both smaller and less modern (i.e. no dishwasher, only one bathroom). We currently have way too much stuff still sitting in the other house (DH has dubbed it the world most expensive storage unit), but I have mental listed items as either
a. just not moved yet, but I have a place for (i.e. my empty canning jars)
b. things to get rid off
c. and a few items in limbo (namely DH and I king bed that does not fit)

Anyway we ended up with a pretty easy low stress move despite living in the same house for 10 years and DIY (with small amounts of friend/family help). We have our family life back and we all can walk to work or school now.
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#19 of 28 Old 11-01-2010, 03:19 PM
 
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I can relate.

Most of the time in this subforum, I have not much to add, as like others have mentioned, so do not live a minimal lifestyle, much less any type of zen.

My house is normally controlled chaos, I am not a very good housekeeper, I am lazy and I can live with that, but it also doesn't prevent me from growing in this area. Over the past few years, I have gotten better about housekeeping, organizing and decluttering.

Also, we did make a short distance move this past winter, but was PACKED into a 1600 square foot house. Had stuff EVERYWHERE, lots and lots and lots and lots of stuff.
I had been in that house for 9 years, and am a packrat, ebayer and on a somewhat regualr basis buy storage units that are sold at auction. We had lots of stuff.

Moved with 1.5 months notice, it wasn't pretty, but worth it in the end.

That being said, I took entire pick up truck worth of stuff to Goodwill this past Saturday, and have equal pile to be taken for scrap metal, and a pile or trash/ recycling. Some of the stuff from our old house, we just moved and sorted it later. It totally stunk, but didn't have the ability to get thru it before we moved, so moved it as was...

I do keep 2 boxes in the corner of my living room at all times. One box holds stickers and a pen and I price things for yard sale and put in the box as I go along daily life. The other box is for the thrift store, and likewise, add things to it as I go.

It's a lot easier if you just pick on area to start with. Go thru one drawer of your desk or kitchen stuff, and see what can go. If it's not a lot, even one less thing is progress.

I found out at the beginning of spring that I had 9 black nice T-shirts, both long and short sleeved variety. I certainly don't need 9 black shirts, but could only get rid of 4 of them. I still kept 5 black shirts.... still don't need 5 black shirts, but didn't force the issue. Getting rid of the other 4 shirts was enough progress on that front for the day. I didn't feel tramatized by the process and I still have more clothes than I need and sent the other shirts back to the thrift store to serve someone else. (PS - down to 3 black shirts now, was able to get rid of 2 more of them since the spring).

Just 10 minutes a day, every day can help sort thru it all and decide what stays and what goes.

best of luck
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#20 of 28 Old 11-03-2010, 01:04 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by confustication View Post
If you are moving, I actually find it easier. I box up the stuff I want to take in each room, then sort the rest. I am ruthless about it. You can do this without moving as well, but take it room by room, and reinvent what it is you DO want in each room. Do whatever you need to with the rest- just get it out the door one way or another.
Awesome! Thanks for that tip!
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#21 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 05:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok. I took part in the 150 by Christmas challenge and I'm in the 2011 in 2011 challenge. I guess you could say I'm pacing myself there as I'm not off like gangbusters  but steady stuff is leaving. 

Anyway I went around my house on Jan 1 and took pictures of what it actually looked like. I didn't straighten or clean or anything so I guess you can consider there the "before." I will do it again next year and see if anything looks different after a year of purging. I always look at those before and afters on the web and in magazines and I NEVER think the befores look THAT bad. I'm telling you, WE have stuff. So here they are. I've taken the whole house, but I only put up the downstairs areas. 

 

Kitchen

http://gallery.me.com/ellienC#100128

 

Living Room

http://gallery.me.com/ellienc#100135

 

 

Family Room 

http://gallery.me.com/ellienc#100135


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#22 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 05:53 PM
 
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Thanks for posting your before pics without straightening. I did it a few weeks back (I had the organizer come and help me), and felt like the only one. I did take pics of the whole house too and when I am bummed, I look at those and can see improvement. It helps. I keep waiting for the baby to sleep better. If I can just muddle through until then, I know it gets easier... or it did with my 6 yo.


Mom to: Honey (6/04) and Bunny (9/09)
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#23 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 06:27 PM
 
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Wonderful that you took pics.  I agree with the pp.  I seem to be working perpetually on decluttering and streamlining my living spaces and sometimes feel like I have got nowhere.  If I had taken pics it would have been useful.  Cute baby in the kitchen!


Mama to 12, and 9 and 3. 
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#24 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 10:40 AM
 
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Quote:
+ instead of getting on with it I'm actually reading about it ... again !

 

nod.gif Yup. 

 

 

Quote:
I am lazy and I can live with that, but it also doesn't prevent me from growing in this area.

 

 

This is a really great attitude.


Someone moved my effing cheese.
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#25 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 11:02 AM
 
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There are long periods of time I avoid this forum, too. Usually when my house is a big old mess!

 

I am trying to go slow and steady in 2011, and take the things I like from flylady. Whenever I am connected to *any* system, I seem to do so much better. My house is actually tidy right not - or at least the main floor. 

 

We had neighbours over for dinner who wanted to see our basement, and I showed them, even though it was very messy. I am quite embarrassed by that (mortified), and really want to change. For real.

 

I'm hoping once I've got some routines solidly down myself, I can get my boys (7 and 9) started on some good habits and routines as well. I want them to be better equipped than I was, when I moved out.

 


Mama to my 2 boys
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#26 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 11:50 AM
 
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Quote:
We had neighbours over for dinner who wanted to see our basement, and I showed them, even though it was very messy. I am quite embarrassed by that (mortified), and really want to change. For real.

 

If your neighbors are anything like me they might have been very pleased to see your messy basement.  It might have been very validating and reassuring.  I would have taken a lot of hope from discovering that someone I perceive as just a regular gal has a messy basement!  Lol! 

 

We're all in this together. Most of us do not have neat tidy homes from attic to basement. Most of us manage to periodically straighten up the main living area (sometimes regularly), tolerate longer term mess in the bedrooms and then have spaces (closets, spare rooms) that are completely ignored. 


Someone moved my effing cheese.
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#27 of 28 Old 01-12-2011, 06:13 PM
 
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Thanks journeymom! I don't think she was judgmental, she seems very very nice, I was just embarrassed - though she did mention a neighbour who is living in a permanent mess. Had I known they were going to go downstairs I would have straightened up! I did a lot of cleaning the next day and want to invite her back and say, see! see! it's not so bad now!

Silly - it's the judgmental voices in my head, not the neighbour.

 

I'm in-between contracts right now, and my boys are in school during the day, so I have time to build routines and chip away at the excess that we still carry. My living room is what I consider decluttered, and it's never messy - or not more than a 2 minute tidy. It's so great, I would love to have the whole house like that.

I do think that all change is predicated on establishing routines and perseverance. I started to focus on my home on the 1st of January, and I see and feel a difference. Primarily, that things are generally tidy on the main floor, and I am slowly chipping away at clutter. 

 

I am going to keep reading on this forum to keep me inspired and committed to changing this part of my life. I am so not a suzy homemaker, but I really believe that the mess we often live in causes a lot of stress, and I want to relieve that for all of us.


Mama to my 2 boys
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#28 of 28 Old 01-14-2011, 11:47 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkksmom View Post

Thanks for posting your before pics without straightening. I did it a few weeks back (I had the organizer come and help me), and felt like the only one. I did take pics of the whole house too and when I am bummed, I look at those and can see improvement. It helps.


see - your stuff just didn't look that bad to me. MY stuff looks bad to me! Also, I've got a 10 month old baby and an almost 8 yo, so I think we're kinda in the same boat. For the last 2 Christmases I said I was going to put aside money from my parents for a professional organizer (I've interviewed 3 of them!) but so far it's been needed for other things. I may get one of the books recommended in another thread though -Organizing from the Inside out or It's all too much.

 

I figured out that the biggest thing DH and I fight about is the house and it would be nice for me to eliminate that source of stress.
 


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