Stuff and belongings – it is everywhere, and it is difficult to escape. As the building blocks of society (and capitalism), you will be hard-pressed to find somewhere or someone that isn’t coveting a bunch of precious items which they don’t really need; and there are good reasons for this.
The truth is, stuff/items/objects (whatever you want to call them) are important to people, and there is a psychology behind why some items are hard to let go of.
This piece is going to take a look at the psychology of ‘stuff’, why it matters, and why it is okay to keep hold of it!
It Helps Someone Learn
From the moment someone is born, they start to learn about the world around them and everything within their grasp. They learn that certain objects are sharp, some are comforting, some make funny noises, and some are frightening. During this time of development, it is physical objects that are a fundamental part of someone’s experience. It can be easy to find a baby who has a favorite teddy or blanket, or a toddler who won’t let go of a specific toy, and usually, this attachment will be formed because of the comfort or fun they have learned it brings them.
Interestingly, this phenomenon was found to be common in the western world where babies would be separated from sleeping with their parents at an early age, perhaps setting a precedent for people of all ages to seek comfort in the form of objects and personal belongings instead of family, close relationships, or community.
Stuff Has Meaning
Ascribing meaning to things is a common aspect of giving something that instils intrinsic or emotional value. This can either be done personally (for instance, gifting yourself something because you passed your exams) or it can happen when you are gifted something at a significant time, place, or moment in your life.
Having things that have meaning can be a wonderful way to supplement your life, but it can also have its challenges. For example, if you have a beautiful, real oak table from your great gran, but have nowhere to put it yet, what do you do? You won’t want to through something away with such significant meaning or history! This is where self-storage can really come in useful. Many people will reach a time in their life where they want to hold on to items that are special to them but might not have the means of storing them at that present moment, so hiring out additional storage can give you somewhere to keep these belongings safe. Head over to https://www.morespacestorage.co.uk/locations/self-storage-huntingdon/ for more information.
Can Attachment to Stuff be a Problem?
While attachment to stuff is natural and normal, as with anything that turns pathological, it can become a problem. Those with a hoarding disorder (Under the umbrella of OCD) can find it extremely difficult to part with anything at all and can cause extreme stress if forced to do so. This requires clinical intervention along with a lot of patience and understanding.