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This show does a very good job of showing both sides of the story. It shows the painstaking efforts of the "cleaners" to keep their homes pristine without making them sound like total freaks. Some of them share their fears and their compulsions, to the degree they feel comfortable to share with strangers. The "clutterers" also share part of the cause behind the clutter, and it helps me get over the "I can't believe how disgusting that house looks!".
Sometimes I feel like shaking the "cleaners" to snap them out of their exaggerated cleaning routines, other times I feel like shouting of the "clutterers" to get their act together. But each episode has a cathartic progression, from their extremes to a precarious equilibrium at the end.
I particularly love the way the show chooses the "cleaner"/"clutterer" pairs. The symmetry in family situation, age, phobias makes each episode feel right.
The main appeal of this show (for me) is that I can see myself going into one extreme or the other. I tend to get emotionally attached to things I own, because they were gifts from people I care about or just because it makes me feel wasteful to throw away something I paid good money for, even if I haven't used/worn it in a while. When I start cleaning, I tend to go into crazy detail and whatever I do, the house still looks and feels messy.
I love this show. It helped me look at my life and find a balance I didn't think I could achieve. I'm using this show to make better spending decisions, to cut down on impulse shopping and to keep my house tidy. I'm not going to buy one of those devices to measure how clean are the surfaces in my house, but it's tons better than it was before I discovered this show.
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