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I specialize in working with individuals challenged by chronic disorganization and am a Certified Professional Organizer in Chronic Disorganization (CPO-CD®).  Hoarding behavior is one form of chronic disorganization.

Chronic Disorganization (CD) has the following four characteristics:

1. Past history of disorganization

2. Undermining of current quality of life due to disorganization

3. Failed self-help efforts to change

4. Expectation of future disorganization

Chronic Disorganization is not a medical diagnosis but a term recognized and used by professional organizers.

Hoarding Disorder is a medical diagnosis given by a mental health professional using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, version 5, May 2013(DSM-5) criteria.  

  • Persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions due to strong urges to save items and/or distress associated with discarding

  • Accumulation of a large number of possessions that fill up and clutter active living areas of the home or workplace which compromises their intended use

  • Excessive Acquisition Specifier: Compulsive buying or excessive acquisition of free things

  • Clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning, including maintaining a safe environment

  • Insight Specifier: Absent, Poor or Good to Fair
    May believe that hoarding-related behaviors and beliefs are not a problem, are slightly problematic or are very problematic


Recommended Books on Hoarding



From Hoarding to Hope by Geralin Thomas

  • Excellent for individual, family members, service providers

  • Provides a better understanding of what the individual might be experiencing

  • Provides an excellent overview of treatments, techniques, and insight



Digging Out by Dr. Michael Tompkins

  • Great for service providers (care team members), good for family members & individual

  • Focuses on Harm Reduction and a plan that all team members (including the individual) agree on what is to be done and what is “good enough”

  • Does not necessarily change behavior, but limits behaviors that create an unsafe environment

  • Good insight by the client is not necessary




Buried in Treasures by Dr. David Tolin

  • Great “workbook” for client and client/organizer teams or client/psychologist/organizer teams

  • Focuses on actions, beliefs and desensitization through client work

  • Intention is to improve insight and change behaviors





Additional Resources on Hoarding


Community College of Beaver County, PA – Buried in Treasures Workshop 


Institute for Challenging Disorganization (ICD) – I am certified through the ICD


Publications and resources for both public and professionals on chronic disorganization and hoarding are available at


International OCD Foundation – Hoarding resource (


Confidentiality Policy


Please know that I will keep all client information and materials, both business and personal, confidential. Anything disclosed in our sessions is done so in complete confidence.

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