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Minimalism

“Important Things I Learned From Doing the Konmari Method”

I’ve been fascinated with minimalism ever since. It introduced itself to me as a mere theme for interior design. Back then I didn’t know that there was more to it than just a way to design your home. Now I know that it’s more of a lifestyle, a way of life.

Don’t get me wrong though. A lot of people have misinterpreted the KonMari method as something related to minimalism. They both deal with decluttering and organizing but they are two different worlds. I’ve read articles where people were disappointed to see that despite these people who were featured on the Netflix series, Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, completed the KonMari course, they still had a lot of stuff in their house.

I think it’s because most people perceive KonMari as a gateway to minimalism. It’s not. KonMari is simply letting go of things that no longer spark joy and tidying up the household. Don’t expect the houses to look bare and minimal after completing the KonMari method because that is not what it is for.

As soon as I saw the ad on Facebook that the Netflix series will air on the 1st day of January, I immediately started reading Marie Kondo’s book, The Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up. And it helped me understand the method on a deeper level compared to just watching the series alone.

I’ve been putting decluttering and organizing the house on hold. I always tell myself to start doing it when we move in to our own home this year. But neglecting these responsibilities have resulted badly. Our apartment is such a mess that it came to a point where it has cluttered my mind as well. It really is true what they say — that when your surroundings is cluttered, your mind will be cluttered too.

Tidying Up With Marie Kondo was a wake up call for me to start working on a general household clean up to start 2019 right. And I did. I was reading the book at night before I go to bed and I watched the series during the day. At first it was just me, I worked on my own belongings first before dealing with everything else. If you are familiar with the KonMari method, this is actually the correct order to start decluttering things. Decluttering your own stuff first will exercise your skill in mastering what things truly sparked joy for you.

Based on the KonMari principle, this is the sequence to which items to tidy first: clothes, books, papers, miscellaneous and lastly, mementos.

And okay before anything else, I have seen bookworms and bibliophiles raised their eyebrows to the enormous amount of books that were discarded on the Netflix series. If you are one of these people, please know that the KonMari method never force anyone to discard the same amount of books. If you are a lover of books and it simply sparks joy for you, feel free to keep them. Again, KonMari is about letting go of things that DON’T spark joy. You aren’t expected to let go of books just because you think you have too much of it. Same goes with people who like to collect items — toy collectors, baseball card collectors, you name them. You are not required by the KonMari law (lol) to give those up. So CHILL.

Okay so going back to my own experience practicing KonMari, after two days decluttering, my partner jumped in. And before I knew it our house has been tidied up.

Did we ever experience a rebound? Of course we did! And that is totally fine for me. I don’t ever expect my two-year old daughter to practice KonMari. Everyday we deal with clutter, but we have reduced to just dealing with the mess my daughter makes. Surprisingly though she has picked up tidying up as well. She cleans up her toys and put it in its proper place. We were surprised she put them inside a cabinet that was emptied from all the decluttering. We didn’t even tell her to do it, she just followed us and did it herself. That’s a parenting win right there.

Not everything has to be black and white though. If there are certain principles that certainly doesn’t apply to you, adjust it according to your lifestyle, according to YOU. I think that’s how people can succeed following the method. You don’t have to follow every single thing Marie Kondo says, just learn from her teachings and adjust it accordingly.

Practicing the KonMari has done so much for me and my family. Not only with keeping the house tidy but it has also cleared a lot of mental clutter. Before I always think of going on a vacation, because I felt like I was tired all the time and just fed up with dealing with everyday life. But now, I feel content and happy, just being at home. It has made all of us happier people and this for me this is the greatest takeaway from doing the KonMari method.

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