‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organising’ by Marie Kondo is more than merely a best-selling book. It formed the foundation of the Netflix series, ‘Tidying Up with Marie Kondo’ that has given rise to the minimalist lifestyle through her decluttering technique called the KonMari Method.
This method seemed like a cultural phenomenon that over the night, has inspired people in Singapore and the rest of the world to pare down their possessions and get rid of excess stuff that ‘doesn’t spark joy’. Simply put, if it makes you happy keep it; if it doesn’t, throw it away.
In this third-leg of our Becoming Minimalist series, we’re looking further into the so-called KonMari method and see how it can help you adopt a minimalist interior design when renovating your home.
What is the KonMari Method?
The Japanese author and professional organiser has certain rules in decluttering:
• Tidy all at once
Instead of cleaning a room a day, dedicate an entire day—a full weekend, if you must—to tidying up. This may sound a little too time-consuming but consider this: if you only clean up a room at a time over an extended period, that room will end up getting untidy again even before the entire house gets cleaned.
• Visualise the destination
Don’t rush to get rid of all your belongings as you never know what can bring you joy in the future. So, before getting rid of items, imagine what your ideal lifestyle would be. This way, you can accurately visualise the home you want to live in and determine which items would not match with the life you wish to have.
• Ask yourself if an item ‘sparks joy’
In visualising the ‘perfect’ lifestyle for you, you should go through your items and highlight those that bring you joy. Consequently, look for items that you can’t stand and are rather generating negativity in the space. Kondo is firm to say that you must touch each item and ask yourself if it ‘sparks joy.’ If not, get rid of it.
• Tidy by category and in order
It’s typical to tidy up location by location, but the professional organiser recommends sorting items category by category and in the following order: clothes, books, papers, komono (miscellaneous, small items, or accessories), and sentimental items. For instance, instead of tackling a dresser in each room, sort through all the clothes you have and lay it out on the floor. Identify which ones to keep and which ones to get rid of.
Adopting a Minimalist Interior Design through the KonMari Method
There are many obvious advantages to a clean, minimalist home—one being the ability to easily locate things thus, causing you less stress. There are also studies suggesting that a tidy environment can help you think more clearly and boost your self-esteem, too.
However, while the KonMari Method is a great way to help you get started with your minimalist home renovation, you don’t always have to follow it to the letter. There may be items that might not bring you joy today but you think they will in the future, a crib for the next baby, perhaps?
Nevertheless, the process can help you simplify your living and organise your home all at once. Like a home renovation, it can turn your home into a beautiful and safe refuge.
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