Many people who struggle with clutter are stuck in the ‘victim’ role. The victim role is noted by the feelings of powerlessness over clutter. That somehow – the inanimate objects around you have secretly banded against you to make you feel overwhelmed and out of control.
The “Victim” is someone who usually feels overwhelmed by their own sense of vulnerability, inadequacy or powerlessness, and does not take responsibility for themselves or their own power. Because of this victim tendency, one of the most difficult dimensions to define, discover and change when addressing clutter situations is the SELF dimension. It is here where we must reflect on our own behavior.
Ghandi introduces this concept beautifully in the following statement:
“Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny.”
― Mahatma Gandhi
By examining your thoughts, words, and actions – you can zero in on whether your self-talk is one of your current limitations.
Do you say things like:
- I’m overwhelmed!
- I don’t know how all this stuff got here?
- I never feel any relief! It’s a constant barrage of stuff, stuff, and more stuff!
- I just wish someone would show up at my door and take care of all this for me.
If these statements sound like you – you could be trapped in the Victim role, blaming your clutter as your personal persecutor.
Although there are considerable contributing factors to overwhelm such as anxiety, AD/HD, OCD, unresolved grief, anger management and others, the victim role can often be a bad habit – which turns into a self-fulfilling prophesy. (If you think you may have other related mental health conditions that may be affecting your ability to cope, see Knowledge Heals. A web resource compiled by Debbie Stanley who is bridging the gap between the world of disorder, and related mental health conditions.)
To find sanity and peace it’s essential for you to:
- See and recognize this behavior in yourself and notice it when it shows up.
- The next is to accept it as so – as in – “Yep, this is me… I blame others for the clutter.”
- And then take a look at putting support systems in place before you can change the current behaviors.
It’s like an overweight person wanting to diet. When they actually make that commitment to change, the first thing they do is get on a scale to see their starting weight. Without seeing the behavior first as it is, for what it is – there will be no movement forward.
- Is it time to check your self-talk?
- Are you playing the victim to your clutter and disorganized situation and expecting to be rescued?
- Do you have people in your life that you rely on to do it for you?
You’ll have a much higher likelihood for success by focusing on yourself – and what you can and can not change. Even a slight shift, if done consistently can make a BIG difference over time.
Focus on implementing just one change at a time. What would actually happen if you chose just ONE behavior to alter this week: hang up your keys when you come in, put your clothes away when you undress, chose a place for something that you are constantly searching to find…. Focused goals are much more achievable, and more meaningful. ONE thing at a time will make a difference – because focused action gets results, and breeds more focused action – which leads to success – one step at a time.