What am I talking about? The KonMari method.
I first heard about Marie Kondo's book The Life Changing Method of Tidying Up through goop. I saw it in a lot of TV shows as well, with the author promoting the method. I then read on Vanessa's blog how she applied the KonMari method in her home. It was really inspiring. I thought, however, that I just didn't have the discipline to do what she did.
I did eventually get the book around March 2016, but it sat on my shelf. Then, in November, I had to help my mom clear her place. Boy...what a wake up call that was. My mom had a lot of stuff, and I mean A LOT! She kept everything, not only her stuff and my late dad's stuff, but all the memorabilia from our childhood (I have two sisters.). School notes, newsletters, theatre programs, old letters, report cards, photos....everything! It was such a challenge to clear out.
I then realized that our house needed to be de-cluttered as well. Even though we have no plans of moving, I needed to tidy up. I needed to get rid of stuff, but where to start? That's when I decided to finally crack open the book.
That is what the basic tenet of the KonMari method: keep only the things that spark joy. I will not go into details about the book, but basically, Marie Kondo states that one way to do de-clutter is to clear stuff up by category in one go (clothes, then books, then paper, then miscellany, then memorabilia) instead of room by room, and to physically touch each item and think whether it sparks joy or not. If not, then out it goes.
Not gonna lie....it was a lot of work especially with three young kids. Just doing the clothes part for my kids and I took about four days (had to re-fold the clothes as well the KonMari way). I've always been brutal with editing my closet, but we still ended up donating bags and bags of shoes and clothes. Got rid of a lot of stuff (DVDs, books, etc.), shredded up so many old receipts, bills and invoices...it was exhausting, y'all, but in the end, it was such an uplifting and positive experience.
I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It just clicked for me, so much so that I had to get her second book Spark Joy as soon as I finished the first one.
Just for reference, here are some before and after pics I took. (I wish I took more "before" pics, because I really did see a tremendous change in many sections of the house.)
Before (my closet- not too bad bust still not as neat as I would like):
My main closet
My second "mini" closet
After (daughter's shirt drawer)
Before (one kitchen cupboard):
After (tea cupboard)
After (the boys' school items shelf)
For those of you interested, here's a video discussing the cleaning tradition in Japan:
Anyhoo, I would like to take this opportunity to wish all of you a Happy New Year!