Curing Clutter

de clutterIn the article “Lighten Up” from Psychology Today, Pamela Weintraub explores how clutter can affect a person’s life and emotions. She explained that over the years, she and her family collected so many things that she came to the point where she sought ‘an antidote to the stress caused by clutter’.

To accumulate things, she explains, is a tendency that we have acquired due to the many years in history that we faced deprivation. We somehow still feel the need to acquire more things in order to feel a sense of security.

This mindset, however, has had the opposite effect. Objects often become linked with deep emotions:

  •  They begin to reflect who we are. If we let go of that object, it can feel like a losing a piece of oneself.
  • They often reflect the relationships in our lives. When we have to detach from them, we tend to grieve because of that link. “Parting with things can fill us with fear.”
  • They can be linked with memories: “Memories fade, but mementos stick around, constantly regenerating those memories. If you don’t keep the souvenir from that one vacation, the vacation feels less real, like a vague dream.” (R. Ferraro)
  • Clutter often goes hand in hand with depression. When thinking of downsizing “it takes psychological effort to evaluate everything you have accumulated over the course of the years.”

Pamela Weintraub tells of how she finally realized that she needed to address this in her own life. She went through a process of determining what to hold to and what to let go of. Although it wasn’t easy for her, she says, “The more I tossed, the lighter I felt…Every stored item eased my mind, but all the tossed clutter set me free.”

Maybe it’s time to de-clutter and experience the freedom it brings.



About Elim

Elim Counselling Services is a Christian Counselling ministry that provides professional counselling for individuals, couples and families. If you are not familiar with Elim Counselling and your first contact with us is online, we would be happy to hear from you. To book an appointment or make an inquiry please contact us by calling (613) 699-1677 or by email at All inquiries are treated with the strictest of confidence.


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