The Art of Conscious Organizing. KonMari, Minimalism & Everything in Between
Have you ever felt overwhelmed by the clutter in your home, or struggled to find things you need amidst the chaos? You’re not alone. Many people find themselves buried in possessions that no longer serve them, leading to stress, anxiety, and even feelings of guilt. But there is a solution – the art of conscious organizing.
This article was written in the inspiration and based on the TALK we had with Sarit Sela, a certified KonMari consultant, an interior stylist and a visual content creator, after being featured on IT’S July TALKS on this topic.
The KonMari method
At the forefront of this movement is the KonMari method, developed by Japanese organizing consultant Marie Kondo. KonMari is not just about tidying up your home – it’s a lifestyle that can transform your entire way of being. By following a few simple rules, you can declutter your space, reset your life, and surround yourself with only the things that bring you joy.
KonMari is a lifestyle. It’s not just a tidy and nicely folded wardrobe. It’s about recognizing the value of the objects in your life and keeping only those that truly spark joy. This means choosing what to keep, not what to discard. Through this process, you can create a home that reflects your innermost desires and passions. As Marie Kondo says, “The space in which we live should be for the person we are becoming now, not for the person we were in the past.”
People often mistake KonMari for minimalism and beige colors, but it’s not. It’s subjective and unique to each individual. The KonMari method is about what brings you joy, not what society or others tell you should bring you joy. It’s about discovering your own preferences and creating an environment that reflects your innermost desires. In the words of Marie Kondo, “The best way to find out what we really need is to get rid of what we don’t.”
You go first. Others will follow
The KonMari method is a deeply personal process that requires introspection and self-reflection. In order to effectively organize and declutter your living space, you must first address your own attachment to material possessions and the emotions that they may elicit. This process can take time and requires a willingness to confront difficult feelings and memories. Therefore, it's essential to focus on your own journey and prioritize your own needs before involving other family members. Once you have gone through the KonMari process yourself, you can encourage others to join you on this journey of self-discovery and intentional living. Remember, the method is not just about decluttering your physical space, it's also about creating a more meaningful and fulfilling life for yourself and those around you.
Ready, set, organize: steps for starting your KonMari tidying festival
So, how can you get started with the KonMari method? It’s simple – always answer the question, “Does it spark joy?” When you hold an item in your hands, ask yourself if it brings you joy. If it does, keep it. If it doesn’t, thank it for its service and let it go. This can be difficult at first, but as you practice, you’ll find that it becomes easier to let go of things that no longer serve you.
The KonMari method is based on six rules:
1. Tidy by category, not by location:
This means that you should gather all items within a particular category together in one place before beginning the tidying process. For example, if you are starting with clothing, you should gather all of your clothing items from every room in the house and put them in one central location, such as the bedroom or living room. Tidying by category allows you to see the full extent of what you own and helps you make more informed decisions about what to keep and what to discard. It also ensures that you don't miss any items that may be hiding in various corners of your home. This rule also helps you avoid the mistake of tidying room by room, which can lead to scattering items throughout the house and not really dealing with the problem of clutter. By tidying by category, you can focus on one area of your life at a time and create a sense of order and control.
2. Order of categories:
The order of categories is critical in the KonMari method. The categories are clothes, books, paper, komono (miscellaneous), and sentimental items. This order is designed to help you build momentum and avoid getting overwhelmed.
3. Commitment to the tidying festival:
This means that you should set aside a specific amount of time to focus solely on the tidying process, without any distractions or interruptions. The length of the tidying festival can vary depending on the size of your home and the amount of clutter you have, but it's important to make a realistic commitment and stick to it. By dedicating a specific period of time to tidying, you can create momentum and focus that will help you make progress and achieve your goals. It also helps to create a sense of urgency and accountability, which can be particularly helpful if you tend to procrastinate or get distracted easily.
4. Imagine your ideal lifestyle:
Before you start tidying, you need to imagine your ideal lifestyle. What kind of life do you want to live? What values and priorities do you have? This will help you decide what items to keep and what items to discard.
5. Finish tidying first, before moving to storage:
It's essential to finish tidying before moving to storage. This allows you to truly appreciate the items you keep and ensure that you're only keeping what you truly need and love. Also, by finishing the tidying process first, you will have a better understanding of what storage solutions you actually need, and you can purchase or make these containers accordingly. This can also help you avoid the trap of buying too many storage solutions, which can lead to more clutter and disorganization in the long run.
6. Thank your items for their service before discarding them:
This is a critical step in the KonMari method. Thanking your items for their service before discarding them allows you to feel gratitude for what you have and to let go of items that no longer serve you.
The KonMari method is more than just organizing your home. It's about organizing your life. It's about learning to live intentionally and surround yourself with the things that bring you joy. The method encourages you to focus on the things that truly matter, to live in the present, and to be grateful for what you have.
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This article was written in the inspiration and based on the TALK we had with Sarit Sela, a certified KonMari consultant, an interior stylist and a visual content creator, after being featured on IT’S July TALKS on this topic. Sarit runs the blog Minimalist-Me and has a very inspiring Instagram page.