I picked up The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo several weeks ago after hearing its praises sung. I love a tidy house, I love order, I love a clutter-free living space. For me, a tidy home brings greater relaxation and harmony. Who doesn’t need more of those?!
I thought I was fairly tidy, but after reading Kondo’s book, I knew I wasn’t as tidy as I could be. Her method, which is known as the Kon-Mari method, teaches you to tidy in a very distinct order:
- Komono (aka Miscellany)
The way she tells you to decide whether or not to keep something is to ask yourself whether or not an item brings you joy. (As a side note, obviously this would not apply to something practical but necessary, like medications or a toothbrush, but those items would not be included in tidying). If it doesn’t bring you joy, discard it – either trash or donate, as applicable. I adhered to her method faithfully and here is what happened.
First, I went through all our clothes – all of them. I had to get real with myself – “Do I really like this?” “Is this something I enjoy wearing?” “Is this something I feel confident wearing?” I asked myself these types of questions and it helped me to purge maybe 20% of an already pared down wardrobe. I did the same for my daughter and my husband took care of his clothes and purged as well. I organized my drawers by rolling my sweaters and pants so that I can see every item when I open the drawer. I organized my closet by camisoles, short sleeve, long sleeve, and dresses. It’s pretty easy to get dressed now, and I don’t miss anything.
Next was books – which is a big deal for me, as I am an avid reader and literature lover. Still, I forced myself to answer the questions, “Do you really feel drawn to this book?” “Is this a book you truly love and want to keep?” I got rid of two boxes of books and now my book collection is nice, tidy, and manageable.
This book also motivated me to round up every single piece of paper in our home and either toss or keep. I could not believe how many old bank statements, bills, and useless miscellany were cluttering drawers and boxes in my home. It was very satisfying to file the papers all in a pretty box I found at Target, which is where I put all our important documents. Now everything is in one place.
Finally, I went through all the rest – the miscellany, or komono – “junk drawers”, kitchen cabinets, and every other thing that hadn’t already been organized. By this point it was easy to get rid of items that did not spark happiness.
I finished decluttering our home a few weeks ago, and I love the results. There is more room, there is a system for items that come in the house. It is easier to find things and easier to put things away. Areas are less cluttered and more organized.
In short, our home is less cluttered and I for one am happier for it. And we don’t miss any of the material things we tossed or donated.
Have you read this book? Have you ever thought of decluttering your home?