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FriMay 17

Pack Rat Day – May 17, 2024

Pack Rat day falls on May 17. This is the perfect day to take a little time off and dig into closets, garages, and other storage spaces with one mission: to declutter. Hoarding can sometimes go under the radar as daily living makes it difficult to notice how many things we accumulate. Celebrate this by getting rid of the old and making space for the new!

History of Pack Rat Day

Although the history of Pack Rat Day is not that clear, it does bring awareness to a more serious subject. Hoarding disorder is the ongoing difficulty to discard possessions regardless of their value or usefulness. People with this difficulty may sometimes feel severe anxiety and distress when having to organize or part with their possessions. 

In some cases, hoarding may be a symptom of another disorder such as obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). 

Extreme cases of hoarding result in a hindered quality of life as living spaces may also become limited by cluttering or items like newspapers, malfunctioning electronic devices, and old furniture. 

In recent years, there has been a sensationalist approach to hoarding in certain media outlets. Experts suggest that this disorder is not a simple one to treat. Although cleaning and organizing might help, the underlying factors that lead a person to develop such behavior mustn’t be overlooked. 

A differentiation must be made between hoarding and collecting. Collecting involves searching, acquiring, and organizing objects as a hobby and a source of enjoyment. While a collector will usually display their findings with pride, a hoarder may feel deep embarrassment and discomfort about their possessions.

Pack Rat Day timeline

An Early Description

John Moore, Bishop of Norwich preaches before Queen Mary II about ‘religious melancholy,’ this is considered to be an early description of the symptoms of OCD.

A Famous Case

Sigmund Freud describes the case of the ‘Rat Man’ regarding a young man who presented obsessive impulses.

Hoarding in the Public Eye

The show “Hoarders” premieres, bringing public notoriety to the disorder.

Many Breakthroughs

More than a dozen research laboratories conduct studies on hoarding.

Pack Rat Day FAQs

Is Pack Rat Day limited to our living spaces? 

Not at all! Take this day to declutter whatever space is important to you. 


Is all hoarding related to OCD? 

This will depend on the amount of hoarding and the emotional effect it has on a person. 


What should I do with all the stuff I don’t need?

Clothes, furniture, and electronics that are in good condition can always be donated. Magazines and newspapers are good for recycling.

Pack Rat Day Activities

  1. Get busy

    Take the day off to go organize your possessions and throw out the things that you don’t need anymore.

  2. Pass it on

    Organize a garage sale or an exchange event with your neighbors.

  3. Help someone

    Do you have a family member or friend that could use a hand around the house? Take this day to help someone clean and organize their living space.

5 Facts About Cluttering

  1. Most of the stuff we have is not useful

    80% of what we keep we never use.

  2. It can lead to stress

    A cluttered space may lead to a cluttered mind.

  3. Cluttering eats time away

    Having a better home organization means less time looking for things you need.

  4. Garages are the main culprits

    50% of homeowners describe the garage as the least organized space in the house.

  5. It hinders your social life

    People who live in cluttered spaces may feel embarrassed about it and isolate themselves.

Why We Love Pack Rat Day

  1. A little investment can go a long way

    Dollar stores offer affordable solutions to get you started on your home organization adventure.

  2. It can be the start of a healthy routine

    It takes 30 days for a person to form a routine. Make Pack Rat Day the beginning of your commitment to home improvement.

  3. A great way to show you care

    Helping someone declutter their living space is a fantastic display of care and appreciation.

Pack Rat Day dates

2024May 17Friday
2025May 17Saturday
2026May 17Sunday
2027May 17Monday
2028May 17Wednesday

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