sparking joy to 2017

Our first week of the year was definitely a great start to 2017. It consisted Reading The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.  I can definitely agree that it was life changing.  Doing this the first of the year was ABSOLUTELY the best way to start of 2017. Out with all of the old stuff and in with newfound joy. I seriously felt like a completely new person once we finished and I felt like I could conquer the word.

The basic thesis of the books is this – if doesn’t bring you joy, don’t have it. Now, there is absolutely nothing that I can write that will convince you to do this or to do it right unless you read the book yourself, so please, go and read it and you will understand more about what I am saying.

KonMari Method Overview

  • Define Your Vision
    • Why did you read the book in the first place? What do you want your home and to look like and feel like when you’ve finished? How do you want to feel when you step inside your home? What do you want to see when you go to bed at night?  For me, I wanted to feel peace and calm in my home. I wanted to feel joy and did not want my home to be something to cause me stress, but an oasis and a refuge.  I also want it to feel warm and inviting for others.
  • Discard by Category (not room)
    • This was something that I had not thought of before.  Typically we think, “okay, it’s time to clean my office!” And then we take all of the things in the office and put them in new places. Marie Kondo points out that this just makes it so much easier to make a mess again.  Pick a category, and put all of those things on the floor.  Start with Clothes, then books, papers, miscellaneous, then sentimentals.  You want to start out with the things you have the least attachment to (clothes) so that you get the hang of discarding by the time you get to the more difficult things.
    • I loved how this tidying methodology is completely centered around discarding, and not organizing.  It is so much easier to stay organized when there is less stuff to organize, in my opinion.

  • Hold Each Item
    • After you get all of your clothes on the floor, for example, you then need to pick up each item individually and ask yourself, “does this spark joy?” If it does, keep, if not DISCARD!
    • Thank each item that you discard.  I know this sounds weird, but it is actually really important.  I loved how Marie Kondo points out that each thing served its purpose at its time.  I had a shirt that I bought thinking that I loved it, but I hardly ever wore it because it didn’t fit quite right and I didn’t love it. Marie points out that it served its purpose in the joy of buying the item, but that it no longer had a purpose because it did not spark joy for me anymore.  I can thank the shirt for what it did for me at the time, but then it is time to say goodbye. Real talk though, I had a really hard time saying goodbye to old college textbooks. They don’t bring me joy, but I just hate giving books away (hence the look on my face).

  • Every Item Needs a Home
    • Everything you own needs a place to go.  Not just on the counter, or by the couch, or wherever I happen to set my keys down.  I think this is definitely the hardest thing for me to actually do, but as we discarded and sorted everything, we tried to define places for things to go.  Now it is just a matter of creating the habits to actually put the things in the right place…

The reason why this book is so successful is not because she provides crazy secrets to organization, but it is because she provides a completely new mindset and way of looking at our homes and the things that we are surrounded by.  Does this spark joy? No? You don’t need that in your life!

As someone who is very much focused on pleasing others, the hardest part for me was parting with gifts or sentimental items that didn’t mean much to me anymore.  They provided joy at the time they were received, but now they are taking up space that we don’t have in our little apartment.  I thank the things and all they did for me and then put them in the donate pile where I know someone else can get much more joy out of them.

This was our minivan full of stuff to donate.  We got rid of three bags of clothes, three boxes of books, 2 boxes of miscellaneous stuff (kitchen stuff, decorations, etc). and some furniture we never use.

This was one of the most refreshing things that I have ever experienced.  As we did these things, I was filled with more joy than I had felt in a long time.  Our home is a place where we deserve to be filled with joy.  It is YOUR HOME! Make it yours, and make it joyful to live in.

There are still a lot of things that I could potentially discard, but I will take it one step at a time.  Meanwhile, go and read the book! Adapt it to your lifestyle.  It really was refreshing and the best way to start out the new year.

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *