What Is a Swedish Death Clean?
Today's episode is brought to you by Oregon. You know, when something goes wrong at home, and you just freak out, I have definitely had my moments especially when it comes to pests ants in the mirror. Nara, cockroaches hanging out around your bubble bath and uninvited rat, a your daughter's birthday party. Don't let pests ruin the moment, get an organ tech out to your house tomorrow. Bill, protect your time and your temper. Visit organ dot com slash brain to save fifty dollars on your first general pest service with the promo code pod. Fifty. That's P, O, D, five zero Orkan home is where the bugs aren't. Welcome to brain stuff. A production of iheartradio. Hey, brain stuff. Lauren Bogle bomb here, cleaning, the home of a loved one who has recently died or entered a nursing home is something most people dread, especially if they have no idea what to do with all the items. Their loved one has cumulated enter the Swedish death clean it may sound morbid, but it could actually lighten the burden of grieving loved ones popularized in the book, the gentle art of Swedish death cleaning by eighty something artists Margarita Magnusson Swedish death cleaning is basically decluttering in your later years. So that someone else doesn't have to do it for you madness own herself Swedish, but lived all over the world. Her book was an immediate sensation in Sweden and garnered series interest in the US. Once it was published here in two thousand eighteen in the book, Magnusson explains at the Swedes, call it, though, standing a combination of the words for death and cleaning, though. It's a relatively recent concept. We spoke by Email with an Charlotte, gavel Adams, professor emeritus of sweeter, studies at the university of Washington. She explained that the word isn't. Sted in any Swedish Academy dictionaries, and that she, I heard of the concept, ten years ago from a man in his seventies who clearing out his artworks and books, so that his sons wouldn't have to do it when he passed away. She said he's still alive, though. He used the word in a humorous tone. I think the Swedes or is uncomfortable, discussing death as Americans and of course, we're not alone in that according to a survey by the academy of Medical Sciences, in England, six out of ten people know little to nothing about those last hours of life. In fact, one third of participants declined to answer the questions leading researchers to surmise that they're uncomfortable or unwilling to talk about death. Even so the concept is clearly struck a nerve Boston-based, professional organizer Reeb. Becker added Swedish death cleaning to her list of services after reading magazines book. She said by Email, I've worked with so many relatives of people who never streamlined. Their belongings, only to leave a massive amount of stuff to the unfortunate next generation. Author and motivational speaker, BJ Gallagher has been on the receiving end of this accumulated stuff, not once or twice, but three times in the last eight years. One of those homes was her mother's residence where she lived for four decades Gallagher said by Email along the way, I decided I wanted to start liquidating my own estate before I become elderly and, or incapacitated, because I don't want my son to have the same headache dealing with my household at the end of my life. I decided that the greatest gift, I can give my son is the gift of no burden. So that's what I've been doing the past couple of years long before I ever heard the term Swedish death cleaning. First on the chopping block was her art clothes jewellery because they all have significant value aren't simple curbside donations. She said, I've used EBay and social media to sell these items with great success. I mean thirty thousand dollars last year selling my clothes, jewelry, and art, and it feels so great to lighten up and clear out space, my closets. And in the rooms of my house. Although it might seem like an awkward conversation to have the irony is that streamlining personal belongings? During those golden years, actually improves the quality of life. Beker said some people feel squeamish about the idea that they're essentially preparing their personal environment for their eventual death. But it makes so much sense. And once completed the person who chooses to do Swedish death cleaning could enjoy a simpler life surrounded only by the things they truly need or love. Still, it can be a difficult topic to broach with a loved one as no one wants to imply that grandma or mom has one foot in the grave. So if you think the person in question might be somewhat rightfully put off by the phrase death cleaning take a different approach. We also spoke by Email with Julie best Trie a Chattanooga, Tennessee based professional organizer. She said when people contact me about their parents wanting to suggest downsizing for them. I always encourage them to position it from the perspective of how old prove their parents lives now rather than their families or children's lives later accent. How a less cluttered environment means, there are fewer things to dust vacuum or make space to store, perhaps bench and a friend, whose parent had excess and fell breaking a hip and recuperating at home wasn't possible, because the cluttered spaces left little room to move about with a Walker. Once your loved ones are on board with a full house declutter you can offer to lend a hand on a gradual basis or use the services of a professional organizer. Then start slowly Beker said my client chooses the room that's bugging them the most we handle every item while the client makes decisions. And then we move onto the next room this process may sound time consuming, but we can often complete an entire room in two to four hours. Here are a few other tips for successful death cleaning from professional organizers, I dispose of anything that could be hurtful or embarrassing, I can say from personal experience cleaning out family members homes, that finding a loved one sex aids is awkward, then bring other friends or relatives in on the action. Ask them, what items of value, they want and write it down or note it in the will this will limit hurt feelings and fighting after your loved one is passed on. They may even decide to distribute the items before, passing and finally consider packing throwaway box items that can't be parted with four sentimental reasons, but that no one else will how to use for. When all of a sudden done few people are likely to feel that they've lost anything other than a cloud hanging over their head Beker, said, clients are always relieved to have thinned, the heard they actually feel a lightness that they may have never experienced before as I like to say it's only stuff. This episode was written by Aaliyah, white and produced by Tyler clang brain stuff is a production of iheartradio's, how stuff works for more on this, and lots of other neat topics. Visit our home planet has stuff works dot com and for more podcasts from iheart radio is iheartradio app, apple podcasts, or wherever you listen to your favorite shows. Hi, I'm Chelsea handler. And I'm launching a brand new podcast with iheartradio called life will be the death of me. And I'm gonna talk to all these different people, my BFF Mary McCormack. That's what we should call. My book tour the apology for great idea. Sorry. Everyone on this whole podcast should be called. It should be called with the orange because of the orange theme of the book Archie. Glad I went to therapy. Life will be the death of me with. Chelsea handler listening subscribe at apple podcasts or wherever you listen to podcasts.