Monday, February 28, 2011

Collecting: Why Do We Do It?

They say the first step is to admit you have a problem.  Well, here goes.....I AM A COLLECTOR!  Yes, it's true.  Over the years, I've collected dolls, Xmas ornaments, fabric, yarn, beads, books, glassware, china get the idea.  Somewhere along the way, a good portion of those things I loved have become a huge weight around my neck.  A lot of the stuff has been packed away in boxes for years.  I don't even remember half of what is taking up space in the storage room and closets throughout my house.  I'm not enjoying any of it!  Does that make any sense to you?  Why do I keep it all?

I think the urge to collect goes back to our ancient ancestors who had to collect things to help them survive long enough to have offspring and guarantee the survival of human beings as a species.  Okay, we survived, so why do we continue to have the urge to collect?  Here are some of my thoughts on that.....

1. To acquire knowledge and learning

2. As a form of relaxation and stress reduction, an escape from our hectic lives

3. For personal pleasure, including appreciation of beauty and pride of ownership

4. For the fellowship and social interaction with other collectors and non-collectors

5. A competitive challenge, the urge to have the most and the best

6. Recognition by fellow collectors and perhaps even non-collectors, a status symbol

7. Altruism, since many great collections are ultimately donated to museums and learning institutions

8. The desire to control, possess and bring order to a small corner of the world

9. Nostalgia and/or a connection to our history

10. Accumulation and diversification of wealth, which can ultimately provide a measure of security and freedom

There has to come a point when enough is enough though, right?  I think I've reached that point.  So, what now?

1 comment:

  1. Now, give away that that doesn't matter and really enjoy what you keep.

    And yeah, i'm working on it too. Tired of having stuff i don't know I have, and couldn't find if i wanted to