The space in which we live should be for the person we are becoming now, not for the person we were in the past.
– Marie Kondo
Three years and a few months ago, I was sitting on the beach trying to relax into a family vacation. It was one of those weeks that had snuck up on me, and I left behind what felt like 100 unfinished projects.
A few days in, I opened the Marie Kondo’s The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and literally read it from cover to cover while the rest of my family swam. We were not too far from home, and when my husband got out of the water, I looked him in the eye and said, “I have to go home.” With that, I packed my stuff and drove the 1.5 hours back to out house, leaving my computer and any work I would be tempted to tackle back at the vacation rental.
Within 6 minutes of getting home, I emptied my closet and 2 drawers, got all clothes from bins in the basement, and all coats from the front hall closet. On my bed was the biggest heap of clothes I had ever seen. I started the process of holding each piece of clothing and feeling if it gave me joy — sounds crazy I know, but 7 hours later I had a pile I was keeping and many trash bags that I was ready to let go of.
It is amazing how different tidying up is with your heart instead of with your head. I highly recommend reading the book, and now you can get inspired by Marie’s new Netflix series.
There are still a few areas left to go in my house, but my closet has been in great shape for 3 years….
“We should be choosing what we want to keep, not what we want to get rid of.” ― Marie Kondō,
Today on the podcast I have my friend Lillia Flores on the show. We both went through decluttering phases at similar time, so I thought it would be fun to talk Marie Kondo with her.
If you don’t know the basics of this method, you focus on a category of stuff at a time—clothes, books, papers, other stuff, with sentimental stuff last. You gather everything from that category and hold each piece and decide if it sparks joy.
Here’s what we talk about:
Making the space to make decisions about letting go of things without others weighing in
Appreciating what you have and how it has served you – and letting it go if it doesn’t serve you or spark joy any more
How to break up the process to fit in your life – making blocks of time to go through a category of stuff
What you can learn about yourself by what you choose to keep
Creating a sacred space
Organizing in a way that makes sense to how you use things (and this doesn’t mean buying lots of new bins and boxes)—creating a flow to your home
The joy, peace, and calm that come with clearing out stuff
That this is a process to do again and again, that you may notice yourself start to cling to certain things and can find out what that’s about
I’ve created a worksheet to help you declutter >> Decluttering Worksheet
SET INTENTIONS & MAKE A PLAN. Use the worksheet to decide how you want to feel in your home and make a plan of some specific things you can do to get there. Some of that may be gathering information (the worksheet has specific ideas), but a lot of it will be blocking out time to do specific tasks.
START WITH YOUR CLOTHES. Pull all of your clothes together. Go through them one by one. Hold each one and appreciate it. Notice if it “sparks joy” for you, if you are drawn to it. Notice and follow your gut reaction, not your logical mind. Let go of the things that don’t spark joy, even if your practial side sees the use in them.
PICK A CATEGORY EACH WEEKEND. The Kon-Mari method breaks things down by category, not location. So pick a category and schedule a block of time to work through it each weekend. Try clothes, books, papers, cooking stuff (which may not all be in the kitchen), office supplies, craft supplies, sports equipment … leave the sentimental stuff for last. Pull all the stuff from your category together. Then work through it. If you feel like you can’t get through it all at once, block off time throughout the week to keep at it until that category is done.