A Moment of Change

Sherry Gaba LCSW, Psychotherapist, Life & Recovery Coach is featured Celebrity Rehab on VH1. Sherry is the author of “The Law of Sobriety” which uses the law of attraction to recover from any addiction. Please download your copy of “Manifest Holistic Health” from Sherry’s Enrich Your Life Series. Contact Sherry at for webinars, teleseminars, coaching packages and speaking engagements. Listen to Sherry on “A Moment of Change with Sherry Gaba”on CBS Radio.

Hoarding is a very real problem in the lives of many people.
While professionals may argue if it is a true addiction or if it is more of a
compulsive behavior, the truth is that hoarding is much more common than you
may think. You have probably been flipping around the channels on your
television and come across one or more shows on hoarding and the devastation it
causes. People will hoard anything from live animals to garbage and need
coaching, support and decision making skills training in order to start
changing the behavior.

Hoarders, like those suffering with an addiction, cannot
simply stop the behavior. The piles of items will continue to increase and
people will become more and more secretive if intervention is not completed.
They will continue engaging in the behavior, particularly if they feel pushed
by the family to change. Getting a life coach or addiction therapist involved
is critical.  A new framework for identifying
with positions and finding value in their lives is also essential.  If you are dealing with a family member that
is hoarding or you suspect may be engaging in compulsive hoarding seeking
professional help is a critical first step.

The major signs of hoarding include:

  1. High levels of clutter and collections of random
    items or one specific item to the point of making living space unusable.


  1. Distorted view on the value of everyday, broken,
    damaged or outdated items by the individual engaging in the hoarding behavior.


  1. Refusal to allow others in to the home, specific
    rooms in the home, yard or living or storage space.


  1. Excessive emphasis on collections or collecting
    items that are not valuable and not well cared for once in the person’s
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