There comes a point in your life that you stop, step back, and take a look around at all the memories you've accumulated in the last few years. As you gaze at the random totem pole you made in the 9th grade and breath in the scent of dust from your eclectic collection of magazines, you realize something--you have become a pack rat.
And I don't mean the cute, little fuzzy wood rat in the image above that collects various items to build its nest. I mean you tend to save things that have value to you, but not to the rest of the world. And that's alright. As a matter of fact, I'm hear to discuss nine struggles of a pack rat. Shall we begin?
9. Being Told You Are a Pack Rat
The thing about being a pack rat is that you don't always recognize that you're a pack rat. So when someone actually calls you a pack rat, you either react like "yeah, I know" or you overreact and deny it--arguing that you are a collector and each item you have collected has a purpose and a backstory (it does).
8. People Telling You That You Need to Get Rid of Something
This is like being told to walk on a bed of hot coals or the world will end. The item in question is precious to you and you couldn't fathom ever not having it. You are well aware of how much space your time machine takes up, but you know it will work someday, you just can't locate the high-density laser pen you need to fix it.
7. Organizational Skills
You might not have the best organizational skills in the land, but you are certainly creative. You like to think the disarray of your room is more of an organized chaos than a disaster. Everything is in its assigned place even if that place is...unconventional. You can't help that the totem pole you made in shop is the perfect place for your collection of magazines.
6. Searching for Something You Need
Despite having organized everything in your room, you sometimes forget where you put something. And when you need it, you have to tear apart every nook and cranny in your room to locate that used dictionary that you were sure was on the bookshelf.
5. Finding New Potentially Useless Stuff to Hang on to
As like with most collectors, you are always finding new things to add to your collection. You don't care that you probably don't have room that basketball sized replica of the Death Star. You will find a place for it. After all, your organizational skills are unmatched.
4. Cleaning Your Room
This is probably one of the more dangerous struggles. You have so much stuff placed in odd places that it could fall on you at any moment if you make the wrong move. And when you say you’re cleaning, you’re trying to find space for new stuff that you have acquired. However, as you clean, you find stuff you didn’t even know you had and try to figure out why you kept it—effectively forgetting about the task at hand.
3. Determining What You Actually Use
Much of the stuff you have, you thought you would use at a later time, even if that time hasn’t come to fruition. So going through your stuff to see what you actually use can be a little difficult as you can still think of 101 different ways to use your broken cane fishing pole—like fighting off the ghost in the living room.
2. Getting Rid of Stuff
Getting rid of stuff feels like the world is going to end because you are so attached to everything from the strange totem pole sitting in the corner you made in shop class to the Olive Garden coaster from the first time you went to Olive Garden.
1. Emotional Attachment
The main reason you don’t throw away anything is because you have an emotional attachment. Your “junk” has sentimental value and you feel like you would just die if you threw something away. You might not need that tattered pair of running shoes because the soles have been completely obliterated, but they were the shoes you were wearing when you aced that biology test in tenth grade seven years ago without studying and they feel lucky. Never mind that they smell like spoiled milk.