the life-changin magic of tidying up

Slaying My “Year Of Less” Using The KonMari Method

I have a confession to make and (full disclosure) this may be a huge shock to those of you who know me.  I…have been…reading…an actual book.  This is a significant moment because when I normally attempt to read a book, I’m asleep precisely 2-3 minutes later. Guilty as charged.

I lovingly blame my friend Karen for this recent development. I was explaining to her that this year as my “year of less.” This led to a conversation about how we both have too many things cluttering up our homes. That’s when she told me about  The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. She bought the book, mailed it to my house (what a doll!), and since I trust her 100%, I am now reading it. Best. Decision. Ever.

the life-changin magic of tidying up

I’ll do my best at giving you the very abbreviated version of the book.  Marie Kondo (hence the KonMari Method) is a woman who has been obsessed with tidying from a very young age.  She has spent her life perfecting the art of tidying and has now decided to share it with the world. Thank you Ms. Kondo!

The KonMari Method begins with imagining what you want your life to look like and asking yourself “why” each step of the way. I know, it sounds deep for just talking about tidying, but stay with me! Once you have imagined and visualized what you want your life to be like, you can begin the process of tidying up.

Instead of decluttering your possessions by location, you should tackle them by category.  If you see all the items you own in the same category all at once, you can really determine how much you need/want to get rid of.  For each item you are contemplating keeping or getting rid of, you should hold it in your hands and see what your instant reaction to the item is. Ask yourself if it brings you joy.  If it does, keep it.  If it doesn’t, thank it for its service and move on. Start this process with easy categories (for example office supplies) and progressively move onto harder, more sentimental categories. This way you can master the KonMari Method before you get to the tough stuff.

The benefits are simple: when you own less stuff, you have less things to tidy. When you have less things to tidy, you have more time and energy to devote to the activities and people you love. It’s pretty simple: also pretty genius.

I’m happy to report this “year of less is off” to a smashing start with the help of the KonMari Method. I absolutely love the process and am doing really well so far! Take a look at my pile of things that I’m donating, asking friends and family if they want, or in very rare circumstances, discarding. (BTW that is one criticism I have of the book, she talks a lot about throwing oodles and oodles of filled trash bags away and it hurts my heart.)

Konmari method

Konmari method

Why did I save these for so long!?

I wouldn’t say that I’m headed for a total and true minimalist life, but I’m definitely not going to feel I’m living in a cluttered home anymore – an average US home has 300,000 items in it. 300,000…yikes!

Has anyone else had success with the KonMari method? Do you have tips for living a minimalist lifestyle? Do you have questions or comments about this post? I would love to hear your thoughts!

-Jackie

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