As promised, today's post will be all about the much anticipated questionnaires, or surveys, that are listed in the book. I'm not sure how much I'm infringing on copyright laws by giving you the questions, but I'm bringing you along for my ride, and I can't very well only show you my answers without you first knowing what I'm answering. If I do have to remove them, I'll let you know why they're gone, and I'll try my best to describe my answers in a different way.
It's been probably about a week now since I first told you about the book that inspired this series, Lose the Clutter, Lose the Weight by Peter Walsh. I hope you've ordered your copy, either through my special discounted link, through Amazon, or your nearest bookstore, and you've received your special package. If you have, from now on, when I'm speaking about something specific, I'll reference a page number and you can read along (like in school!). If you don't have a copy, don't worry! You do not need one to follow along, since my six week path is VERY different from the one in the book.
Ready? Here we go! On page 35 we get our first survey:
SAVING INVENTORY - REVISED (MODIFIED FORMAT).
We're told to answer the questions thinking about how we felt and acted this past week. The scoring chart is pretty straightforward, but they do reverse the wording of some of the questions, so the actual addition at the end is a little tricky. I'll get to that at the end, though. My answer is BEFORE the question (in red) so you don't have to search for it.
SCORING: 0=NONE ~ 1=A LITTLE ~ 2=A MODERATE AMOUNT ~ 3=MOST/MUCH ~ 4=ALMOST ALL/COMPLETE
3 - 1) How much of the living area in your home is cluttered with possessions?
3 - 2) How much control do you have over your urges to acquire possessions?
2 - 3) How much of your home does clutter prevent you from using?
1 - 4) How much control do you have over your urges to save possessions?
3 - 5) How much of your home is difficult to walk through because of clutter?
The next set has a slightly different scoring system, but still counts toward your total score.
SCORING: 0=NOT AT ALL ~ 1=MILD ~ 2=MODERATE ~ 3=CONSIDERABLE/SEVERE ~ 4=EXTREME
3 - 6) To what extent do you have difficulty throwing things away?
2 - 7) How distressing do you find the task of throwing things away?
3 - 8) To what extent do you have so many things that your room(s) are cluttered?
0 - 9) How distressed or uncomfortable would you feel if you could not acquire something you wanted?
3 - 10) How much does clutter in your home interfere with your social, work, or everyday functioning? Think about things that you don't do because of clutter.
0 - 11) How strong is your urge to buy or acquire free things for which you have no immediate use?
3 - 12) To what extent does clutter in your home cause you distress?
3 - 13) How strong is your urge to save something you know you may never use?
1 - 14) How upset or distressed do you feel about your acquiring habits?
3 - 15) To what extent do you feel unable to control the clutter in your home?
1 - 16) To what extent has your saving or compulsive buying resulted in financial difficulties for you?
3 - 17) How often do you avoid trying to discard possessions because it is too stressful or time-consuming?
2 - 18) How often do you feel compelled to acquire something you see(e.g., when shopping or offered free things)?
2 - 19) How often do you decide to keep things you do not need and have little space for?
3 - 20) How frequently does clutter in your home prevent you from inviting people to visit?
2 - 21) How often do you actually buy (or acquire for free) things for which you have no immediate use or need?
3 - 22) To what extent does the clutter in your home prevent you from using parts of your home for their intended purpose? For example, cooking, using furniture, washing dishes, cleaning, etc.
3 - 23) How often are you unable to discard a possession you would like to get rid of?
Based upon your answers to these 23 questions, you'll tally up three scores: Your clutter score, your difficulty discarding/saving score, and your acquision score. The sum of those three scores will then give you your overall total score.
Scoring is a bit odd, so pay attention:
Score One: Clutter
Add together your answers to the following questions:
1, 3, 5, 8, 10, 12, 15, 20, 22
This is your total clutter score. My total was 26.
Score Two: Difficulty Discarding/Saving
Add together your answers for the following questions:
4 (reversed), 6, 7, 13, 17, 19, and 23
This is your total difficulty discarding/saving score. My total was 19.
NOTE: your answer to some questions need to be reversed when adding up your total because of the way they're worded. For example, if you answered question 4 with 0, tally a 4. Use the following as a guide: 0=4 ~ 4=0 ~ 1=3 ~ 3=1 ~ 2=2
Score Three: Acquisition
Add together your answers for the following questions:
2 (reversed), 9, 11, 14, 16, 18, and 21
This is your total acquisition score. My total was 7.
To get your grand total, add all three scores together. My grand total was 52.
On average, people who do not have cluttered homes would generally have a total score in and around 24, while those of us who do have issues with clutter consistently score above 40.
My total score is a little bit embarrassing, to be sure. That score is high. Although my acquisition score is lower than average, my clutter and difficulty discarding scores are way up there. I hate to admit it, but this is pretty accurate. Over the years I have accumulated quite a bit of stuff, through purchases, gifts, and hand-me-downs. I have recently made some changes to my habits so that I'm really thinking about why I'm buying what I want to buy, and that is making a difference, but I have, for years, had issues with letting things go. I know they won't sell for much, and I feel they're worth so much more, so I keep them. Or they have sentimental value, even though they don't necessarily fit in with the decor in my home or have a place to live, and still I hold on to them. As with my shopping habits, this problem I have with letting things go will also have to be addressed while I go through my home de-cluttering all the rooms
Did you take the survey? What did you get as a total? If you're not already in the process of de-cluttering, does that score make you think twice about the stuff in your home? Leave a comment and let me know. As always, thanks for reading, glad you're here.
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