Blog Mental

Sort Your Life Out – Can Change Your Life

Credit – BBC

My wife and I have a favourite TV show. It’s – Sort Your Life Out on the BBC.


As the BBC website puts it – “Stacey Solomon and her crack team help families transform their homes. With a life-changing declutter, they upcycle and recycle their way to a new home”.


My take is – they take all the items out of a family’s cluttered house and lay it all out in a warehouse in sections. All the pans together, all the toys together etc. The family then decide which items to resell, donate or discard, removing 50% of the total items. While they do this, the house is cleaned and the layout maximised with new/recycled furniture. The remaining items are moved back in and the big reveal is made as the family returns.


The show is frickin’ excellent and I can’t get enough of it.


In the early part of the show where the team go around the cluttered house and doors don’t open and floors cannot be seen, I have a strong reaction, as if I can’t watch and it’s too much for me. Yet I like it so much. So what’s the hook?


What I see (and the show clearly highlights too) is the emotional and mental burden that the cluttered state of the participant’s house has on them. As with most problems, there are often other underlying issues. The death of a loved one in which their possessions were amalgamated into the house. Or a family which once had very little and although their financial situation has improved dramatically, they hold on the every item as if it has not.


The lifting of this burden is seen in the payoff at the end where participants say “It’s like a great weight has been lifted off my shoulders” or “I feel so free” and the realisation of the lost time and restrictions of living in such a way dawns on them.


In the section at the very end where the cameras revisit the family a month or so later, common refrains are – they now eat dinner together, family now visits, the children can have friends over to play. All life-improving social activities.


Watching it normally spurs my wife and me on to have a clear out of some kind, however small. I recently cleared a sock and pants drawer that had been struggling to close. I filled a carrier bag with unused or old items, and found some items I’d completely forgotten about and since “reintegrated into my wardrobe”. I now open the drawer, can see everything in it and find whatever I want quickly. I still open the drawer weeks later and a little bit of pleasure washes over me.


I’ve posted about my decluttering/minimalist journey here and here and understand telling someone just to “get rid of your stuff” is not the answer. If you or you know someone who is struggling with clutter, watch or pass on the show and see if it can help.

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