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Am I a hoarder?

My Collections

So, here’s the main question we all need answering: Am I a hoarder?

Definition of hoarder according to Google:

a person who hoards things.

synonyms: collector, saver, gatherer, accumulator, magpie, squirrel

Well… Thanks.

The Urban dictionary has a much more interesting (and real) approach to it:

Hoarder
(Adj) A word that describes anyone that feels the need to find, collect, keep, pack ANY and EVERYTHING because they do not know how to throw things away.

Boy: Dang Girl! How many shoes do you have up in this closet?
Girl: Oh I only have 12 here, you should see my garage, I have about 300 there, but don’t worry they are all in boxes.
Boy: Girl you’re a hoarder of shoes.

OK.

I don’t know in your case, but I could try to pretend I’m not, I could try to make myself believe that I’m not, I could also try to create all of these excuses why I’m not, but what the hell! Let’s get to the truth of things:

I am a hoarder.

Or according to Google’s synonyms, a squirrel. Yeah, I prefer that.

And here’s why I’m a hoarder: I keep things in my life that I don’t need. And because I’m also a collector, it makes things worse!

Let me talk you through my collections first.

I love collecting things. There was a point in my life when I used to say “The only thing I don’t collect is boyfriends”. Still true! Officially I only had three. But collecting things (not boyfriends, things – although if you collect boyfriends/girlfriends I’ve got nothing against it!) brings me good memories back, it makes me feel like I’m holding a piece of history.

I look at my collections and I think “I remember where I got this, who gave me that, back then these things were so cool”. Collections and old stuff (vintage, if you prefer) make me feel like I own something special. #YeahImWeirdLikeThat

So, let me tell you which are my collections.

Stamps

Stamps collection, not a hoarder

My first collection which was passed on to me (probably forcefully) by my mom. She had a cool one and I though, “I want that too!”. So I started mine and got them together. I have no clue of the value of it, but I just love it and I don’t want to sell it, so I don’t care how much it’s worth.

 

Free Postcards

Postcards collection, not a hoarder

There was a free postcard collection at cafes back in Portugal a few years back, and they were numbered, so I had to collect them all! Oddly some of them have the same serial numbers so someone was not making their job right! And yes, you’ve guessed right, I would order them by number (after actually ordering them by type, like music, animals, food, beverages…) so I could make sure I was not doubling up on the same ones. (Oh gosh, what’s wrong with me?)

 

Coins

Coins collection, not a hoarder

Money, money, money!!! Worthless but cool money. Old coins from before the Euro, some other from around the world that are still valid today, and oddly, I do have quite a lot of euros hanging around in my collection book. Yes, Euros I could actually use in real life when I’m in other European countries. But there’s 23 designs of each of the coins… So… I kind of need to collect them all… And then there’s the commemorative ones… Like… I also need them all (I know! It’s a disease!!!)…

 

Pins

Pins collection, not a hoarder

I (positively) blame Disney for this. And the Olympics too. I started this collection more seriously when working for Walt Disney World and having to pin trade with guests as a part of my job. I really started getting into it and I think my collection is pretty awesome too. Although it’s a pretty expensive collection, especially the Disney ones (“£7.99 for a pin? Seriously? Oh, I’ll take it… And that one too, please… Yes, the £12.99 one…”). Oh well…

 

Magnets

Magnets collection, not a hoarder

Oh, magnets. I’m addicted to these bastards. That’s the only collection I am still really serious about. I try to bring one magnet from each of the places I visit, but I’m actually running out of space in my fridge to collect more. And then I can’t really just collect one per place I go to. Like, I have 3 or 4 from London alone and I live here!… How unhealthy is this?

 

OK, from this list though you can definitely say I’m a collector. But it all takes space in my life. As I’m sure it takes in your life too. My mom collects boxes. A friend of mine collects tea pots. My grandma collects thimbles. You probably collect something else that is also unique and makes you happy.

Although there’s other stuff I’ve kept throughout the years that prove I’m definitely also a bit of a hoarder:

  • All my books from school: all of them. Including primary, secondary, uni. All of them.
  • All my notebooks from school: all of them. Yep, again, all of them.
  • Books: I can’t get rid of my books. I love my books. Even the ones I never read and probably never will. Some of them just look cool, so they need to stay. Books. It’s so hard for me to pass by those bookshelves on the tube station and not stop and find something I totally need to read. I even took a children’s one the other day! I don’t have children!!! Oh, but I love books and I want a house with a library with those stairs attached to the wall that slide so I can reach the top shelf. I love books. (Have you noticed I love books? Like, love it? I loooove books.)
  • CD’s: I also love my CD’s. I still have some classics I need to buy (well… I don’t need to but… You know…). There’s my Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill, my Skunk Anansie’s Post Orgasmic Chill, my Nirvana’s Nevermind, or my Backstreet Boys’ Backstreet Back, plus the NSYNC’s No Strings Attached, and then the Portuguese version of the Disney OST of Hunchback of Notre Dame… (See there how I almost made you think I had an interesting taste in music and then it just went downhill from there… #StoryOfMyLife – damn, just realised this is a song by One Direction. “How do you know that?” you ask, “hmm…”)
  • (Talking about boysbands…) Old teen magazines about the Backstreet Boys: oh, my teenage years. Don’t even go there, I nowadays do think they’re slightly cheesy at times, but I still absolutely adore them to bits! They were the ones that taught me English, as I wanted to sing their songs correctly, so I would learn all their lyrics properly. Thank you guys! And no, I really don’t want to get rid of it.
  • Letters, and birthday cards, and notes from friends: I have a small box with those. I can’t really throw cards and letters away! That’s rude! They’re memories! And it’s actually so nice going through them once in a while and getting those long lost memories back.
  • Old agendas: This is a tough one as well. They have my history on them. I can browse them and find the exact time I went to the dentist in 2007. Like, that’s important right? Right?

 

So… hoarder?

This is a pretty long list… And there’s of course loads I’m not mentioning like scarfs, bags, pens, magazines (like the Stylist which is free every Wednesday! #DamnYouFreeThings), notebooks, boxes, necklaces, earrings, frames (that I got at the end of an event.. Like, why?…) and sooooo on.

Yes. I’m a collector and a hoarder.

But I’m gradually becoming better at getting rid of things I don’t need (today I just threw away 5 pairs of slippers, and 3 other pairs of shoes as I simply don’t wear anymore because they are broken! #10PointsForGryffindor).

And, well, I know this might be a bit suspicious, but I think it’s ok to be a little bit of a hoarder. I am not a minimalist. Despite knowing how good it feels to NOT own many things, I still prefer to be the way I am and have my stuff. I love my stuff.

I believe the secret is to make sure that what we own is not getting in the way of our lives. (Right now, most of my stuff is probably getting in the way of my mom’s life as it’s back at my parents home. But that’s fine right? #MomDoesntMind – I hope)

But seriously, if we can still tidy things up in an organised way, if things fit effortlessly where they’re supposed to fit, if our wardrobes and storage places are easy to use and reach, then I think we’re fine.

Because at the end of the day I might be a bit of a hoarder but I am organised with everything I own.

It’s when we start feeling a bit overwhelmed that we need adjusting and a little help. And that’s what I’m here to do.

P.S. – A big shout out to my (not so) little brother who took the pictures for me. Portugal is a bit far away to go and take pictures of my collection, so he did it for me. He’s awesome. And single. Any takers? 😛

P.S.2 – And you? Are you a hoarder? Or a collector? Share your stories with me by commenting below!

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