While you may not have a hoarding problem like Marie, you may be suffering from stuffocation. According to the Macmillan dictionary, "stuffocation" is a buzzword that describes "a feeling of stress caused by having so many things that you do not know how to use or store them all".
Is stuffocation a problem? Consider these quick statistics.
- The average American owns 300,000 items (LA Times)
- 1 in 10 Americans rents an offsite storage unit & this is the fastest growing commercial real estate market. (New York Times magazine)
- Of Americans who own a two car garage, 25% cannot fit any cars in their garage, and only 32% are able to fit one car. (US Dept of Energy)
- Americans spend an average of 153 days during their lifetime looking for lost items, that's an average of 9 items a day (The Daily Mail).
Too much stuff also creates physical risks from dust, mold, animal dander, not to mention the danger from tripping or falling over items. Quite simply, all this stuff robs us of our joy, our time with loved ones, our ability to relax and and our comfort in offering hospitality to others.
The More of Less by Joshua Baker describes Johua's realization that he was missing time with his kids because of the hours he felt he needed to spend cleaning up the garage, organizing belongings, cleaning around possessions, picking up toys. How would you spend your time if you did not have to manage your stuff?