Saturday, February 12, 2011



Read this piece and judge for yourself , if you are mentally sick. 

After that think about your immediate family and friends. 30% chances are that you have this mental disease called OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER.

Are you a hoarder?

Think of all the cloth in your house--inside wardrobes. attics etc. How many of them will you use for the next 3 years. What is the percentage which you have hoarded?

Hoarding is an effort to manage the anxiety raised by obsessive doubts.  

There will be  a disruption to feelings of self-worth, interpersonal relationships, occupation, or health as a result of hoarding items which are worthless.

Hoarders experience intense anxiety when they even think of discarding what most others view as useless objects.

They are affected by anxiety-provoking thoughts such as: "What if I run out?" "What if I need to know something and don't have the information available?" " "What if I throw it away but the day comes when I really need it?"

Hoarding usually starts in an attic, then in a basement, a spare room, a closet, and then, eventually, takes over every room of the house. As their mounds of useless items continue to climb toward the ceiling, their home is no longer a home.  Room after room ceases to function. What was once a normal, functional home becomes room after room of trash bins. You look under the bed you will find dust and trash.

Strong emotional connections are formed to the extent that an individual feels a sense of safety or comfort.  Hoarders are suspicious of other people touching possessions , as they feel it may be thrown away , when they are not around.

If you are not a hoarder, but your friend is, it is your duty to help him to change. Convince him that being overly sentimental does not bring happiness---that storing up stuff only brings misery, chaos, and isolation.

Get him involved in dividing his stuff into 4 groups. “Keepers”, “Donations”, “To Sell”, and “Garbage.” There is no point in throwing stuff away when your hoarder friend or relative is out of town. Be sure the hoarder stands at the front door and grants the final “OK” on each item. It’s vital that he makes the earth shakin’ decision of what to do with his garbage stuff.

Be aware that he’ll have a hard time making up his mind, and will, most likely, not want to let go of most of his things. But gently remind him of his goal to change and find order, happiness, and peace---to reclaim his home.

All hoarders firmly believe that every single object will be useful one day, whether it is a broken toy, old magazine, torn ill fitting shoes, empty container, plastic bag , old tooth brushes, old school notebooks, old damaged  music tapes .. They will have an imaginary emotional connection to all such garbage.

Rings a familiar bell , right?  Well be aware!

Hoarders are afraid to throw away things, this is why it is a mental disease. Hoarders live with so much clutter it may endanger their physical health. Dirt, mites, ticks , insects, and bacteria that form over a period of time can cause sickness and unhappiness. Excessive paper and cloth in a home can cause a fire.

Compulsive hoarding can have an adverse effect on a family. Family members who share a home with the hoarder cannot understand why their loved one keeps so many useless garbage . It prevents the family from enjoying their home. Inmates get allergy,  Rhinitis and get depressed for no rhyme or reason. Functional spaces are lost due to clutter.  For example, table tops occupy useless stuff.

The family of the hoarder is ashamed of bringing their friends home. There is no happiness or love.
Hoarders make themselves miserable and and everyone else miserable. 

People with personality disorders , generally, blame others for their problems. They are awful to work with because they don’t accept responsibility for themselves and therefore never change.

Remember, there is NO medicine for treating hoarding. This OCD is due to bad programming in your genes. You need to wipe out the blue print and insert a healthy one. 

Vipassana meditaion is one sure way.  Read my post dated 9th Feb 2011, and change for the better. 

It is about letting go first and then changing for the better. You can never learn, unless you unlearn.



  1. Sir,
    Don't know how to thank you. I am wondering why there are no comments here. MOST VALUABLE PIECE OF INFORMATION. I read your post on speed reading and then came here....I started lapping up every word, or call it soaking up....every word is true. This I am saying out of experience..I am married to a hoarder born to a hoarder! I mustsay much of the problems I have with my husband(you got it right!...NAG NAG!!!) usually center around his clutter gathering habit. Now if I am to take this article to his notice, I HAVE TO NAG HIM. I had every problem that you said will result because of hoarding..foremost is DEPRESSION to the extent that it took a toll on my health and only this month I completed a course of ayurvedic medicines for that...again after much war of words to convince my husband in favour of ayurvedic treatment against allopathic treatment that he suggested. He wanted me to have cetirizine when I had non-stop sneezing, and developed rashes frequently last year.
    Now tell me who is nagging here? I have a feeling that it is me and I just hate it when I have to do it even for trivial I am not just a nagging wife but a nagging mother too.. My 13year old son feels that I am nagging and obstructs my communication with him in nearly every matter. He wanted to learn the game of pallanguzhi, and when I was trying to explain ton him the little that I knew, he was impatient and kept interrupting with his rushed conclusions. As a result, I had to raise my voice and repeat what I said and then he said I had the nagging tone which drove me mad..I too crave for a home that is disciplined not out of fear for some authority but out of deep respect for family values and culture,with no dearth for love and understanding, but simply don't know how to get it..What is worst of all is, solutions are on hand..your website is a treasure...but it must be used, right? It is like I have the medicine and the one with disease refuses to even admit that he has the disease..Well, I can hear you asking sarcastically whether I was sure that it was not me who has the disease...I have been pondering on that too..

    May be you were right about the physical relationship angle to the unhappiness in marriage...but let me tell you sir, it is the male who is anxious that his flaw may be made public, that creates problems for the woman with his indifferences and pushes her to the verge of nagging..more so after begetting children, who serve as proof or shield that he is not impotent.. now he makes sure that he woman is preoccupied with every problem possible in a household..her cooking is criticized(even if the in-laws themselves find very palatable), the way she raises her kids is ridiculed(when she insists home remedy is better for common cold rather than antibiotics like amoxicillin), she is blamed vehemently when the playful child hurts himself, even if it is a small bruise...the list is endless..

    And in most cases, the woman does not care to respond seriously until it reaches the point where the children's welfare is at stake..and there starts the NAGGING and the man makes sure it keeps going thenceforth..

    I am winding up now...son is home from school...eagerly waiting for your counsel

    1. hi c,

      in the near future both you and your husband must get you BP and cholesterol checked.

      when you have too much garbage in the house dust and mites cause allergies.

      and it is NORMAL for a woman to go into shrill mode, when the child you are teaching is not understanding what you teach despite your best efforts. it is so because it is your child.

      if you where a teacher in school, you would NOT go into SHRILL mode - for you will NOT care for those children.

      most people mistake dust allergy rhinitis for common cold.

      recently i lost some weight-- and i was happy that i did NOT throw away my EXPENSIVE pants just because it was tight at the waist.

      capt ajit vadakayil

  2. Sir,
    I had started working on de-cluttering my home and getting back to you after finishing it. But, as usual it was they say if climb few inches, you fall by few feet..still, armed with inspiration and wisdom from you, I went ahead and my husband too helped. now with the water crisis(chemical(MCHM) contamination in our place-I had sought your advice in your Type-2 diabetes post), ther is crates & crates of bottled water and jugs all around the house..and clutter has started to gather again. But surprisingly, I did not feel any negativity or depression or irritability as I usually experience. I feel I can do it anytime and am not baffled at all. I owe this to you, knowing that your wisdom and knowledge is always there for me. I have realized that being clutter-free is not for showing off to visitors and guests, but for our own well-being. I no longer feel ashamed when there are surprise visitors. I clear the space according to the genuine need of the situation to entertain them.
    I feel inadequate when I say "thank you", but still..THANK YOU!

  3. Sir, please help me. I am utterly helpless. My mother has been hallucinating about talking various Mahatmas like Swami Vivekananda, Ramakrishna Paramhansa, Swami Ramdev etc. She is thinking that they are talking to her through thought-transfer. She is also feeling that she is being able to communicate with god. I can very well say that she is imagining such things because the things she is says that the Mahatmas are telling her are actually her own thoughts. Now my father is a very non-understanding person and he has almost nil faith in spirituality. Can you please advice me what kind of treatment we should consider for her? I am sorry if my question is not very clear. Please help me.

    1. hi s,

      take her to a bangalore NIMHANS.

      capt ajit vadakayil

    2. Thanks for your response, Ajit Ji. Sir, in case of mental problems, which kind of treatment is better - the common method (which is usually followed in mental hospitals and which often involves allopathic medicines) or alternative methods like reiki, pranic healing, ayurveda etc?

    3. hi s,

      i have already replied to you- NIMHANS is a modern allopathic hospital.

      they will do proper tests.

      capt ajit vadakayil

  4. Very good post....



    in DS they fall prey to their own booby traps, because they feel the collected junk is priceless -- it is a bizarre mental condition.

    capt ajit vadakayil

  6. Dear sir,

    i am 32 and bachelor. Since last 4 months, I started suffering from this OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder), first time in my life...lots of hand washing, lots of mouth washing..using so much soap.. I am spending lots of time in bathing also...due to religious fear....repeating gurbani hymns again & again thinking that i missed the last line or pronounced it wrong....and many other things and phobia...counting a task to some number in my mind...and its really taking a toll at my life, my mental peace, ruining my life..

    I was quite good in studies, job and sports all life...last year i was in sort of depression from a personal reason..ocd started four months ago...Please help me. I am always sad, my life is getting destroyed by this ocd.

    Regards, KS, Delhi

    1. Hi Kulwinder
      Start doing Vipassana Meditation,it will help you.

  7. Respected Sir,
    Gods and Goddesses are still exists in this whole universe and will in future time and I understood it but I'll not tell you how I understood it because of some secret reason. And maybe Shravan's mother is not mentally ill, maybe she's allwright. And one thing Gods and Goddesses knows everything which we thinks inside our mind which is very strange ! Isn't it?

  8. Hi Captain,
    One of my close friend is an excessive drinker. He has almost destroyed his liver by excessive drinking. He has this habit of hoarding. It was an eye opener to read this post and learn about this disorder. Is there a way long time drinker could get rid of the habit ? Prayers for your well being. You are a man uniting India.

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