New doors are opening…

I am delighted to announce that my company name will be changing as of October 1st, 2019, to Livable Spaces LLC. Stay tuned for more details!

CPO-CD® April Progress

My assignment this month was to write a book analysis (the last of four), on track to graduate from the Institute for Challenging Disorganization with my CPO-CD® certification in September 2019. I choose the book, Buried in Treasures (BIT), help for Compulsive Acquiring, Saving, and Hoarding, by David F. Tolin, Randy O. Frost, and Gail Steketee, suggested by a colleague—and I am so glad I read this book! Buried in Treasures is a valuable “how-to” resource guide for professional organizers and related professionals, and is a practical self-help guide for people who hoard. This book has become my “bible”, and rates very high in my library of books on people who hoard. Based on this  book, there are  “BIT Workshops” across the country, and research shows that the workshops are nearly as successful as individual therapy for hoarding. The book’s authors present thought-provoking questions regarding getting motivated, reviewing values and personal goals, and of course confronting triggers and coping. What makes this “workbook” style approach so effective is that the authors really drill down to the core mis-beliefs that pop into the head of people who hoard, and challenges those thoughts. It’s a must read for families with loved ones who hoard, people with hoarding behavior and professionals.  For more information on BIT support groups visit:

In San Francisco:

In Oakland:

 

Hoarding was once a subtype of OCD

The Kitchen – surrounded by clutter, she’s left a 10-inch area to eat her meals

As recently as 2013, a hoarding was a subtype of OCD, but now it’s its own category (DSM-5). OCD was definitely prevalent, and all to evident in this home I recently visited in the Bay Area.  In this case, this person has good insight and recognizes that obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is showing up in her apartment by way of too much stuff. She told me she felt like she is “buried alive with stuff, like a ball and chain around me.” She reached out to me for help, and with the sound of my voice, she told me, “you’re comforting my heart”. Yes, there’s a lot of work to be done, but I know I can improve the her health, safety, and quality of life with patience and compassion.

The bedroom, filled to the max with more bagged clothes. She only sleeps on top of her bed.
Self described “germaphobe”, she bags all her clothes to “protect” them.