Earlier this year, Netflix launched Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, a wildly popular series based on Marie Kondo’s bestselling book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. The series outlines, in a step by step guide, the Konmari method of cleaning and organizing and it has had everyone talking (and purging!) Second-hand stores have seen a surge of donations unlike they have ever experienced before and people are saying goodbye to many of their possessions with hopes of finding joy living in a more minimalist lifestyle. Whether you are preparing your home to list or just want to de-clutter, purging can be incredibly satisfying and the core principles of this method seem to work for a lot of people. Let’s take a look at what it’s all about.
The Konmari Method
The Konmari Method is based around the concept of joy; if an item or belonging no longer brings you joy, it is time to let it go. You will keep only things that truly matter but also thank the items that you are letting go of for their service. This is not entirely unique but what makes the Konmari Method so different from other organization strategies, is that you approach your tidying by category, not by location where most other methods adopt a “room by room” type of approach. It suggests starting with all your clothes then moving on to books, papers, miscellaneous items, and finally sentimental items. To truly adopt this philosophy, one must commit and envision their ideal lifestyle as they work through the process.
Criticism and Challenges
The concept seems simple enough but there are some people that are having trouble getting rid of certain types of items and it is completely understandable why. Most criticism centres around the idea of an item providing joy as some items may not instill joy but are very important from a practical sense; this is only problematic because it can create stress for people who truly want to dive into this philosophy when they are unable to. Book collectors, for example, may not be so keen on letting go of books, even if they know they may never read them again. Others are finding it challenging to apply these methods in the kitchen, where space and storage is an issue in almost every household: it’s unrealistic to think that every pot, pan, and utensil will spark joy but they may serve more practical purposes.
The KonMari Method may be challenging for some people but regardless de-cluttering and purging every so often can be incredibly satisfying and make your space more enjoyable. Whether you want to dive in head first and try out the KonMari Method for yourself, or you just want to dabble with the bigger ideas as you spring clean, here are the key takeaways to get you started:
- Commit yourself to your tidying project – If you are following the KonMari Method, this is a big commitment but this can be applied on a much smaller scale. For example, take on your clothes and commit to going through all of them.
- Envision yourself how you want to live – If you are happy with lots of stuff and can’t imagine living without it, this is probably not for you but if you don’t, imagine what you would like and keep your eye on the prize.
- Tidy by category – This is a unique approach, even if you don’t want to tackle all the categories.
- Consider which items spark joy – If it doesn’t make you happy, it might be time to get rid of it.