Ah, Marie Kondo, your chair looks neither comfortable nor ergonomic. However, your methods are brilliant and effective. (Photo Credit: Ten Speed Press / Vox.com)
I wanted to use this entry to check in with everyone and see how folks are doing. Also, I’m ten days in and I wanted to clue you in on what’s been going on, in the midst of a busy week. Here’s what’s going on:
KonMari. KonMari method everywhere.
I took KonMari to heart when we got back from our weekend retreat. I find the criteria of “Spark Joy” to be quite subjective and challenging. I mean, at its essence it is subjective, right? Do others find that this is easier to do at a specific time of day? Or do I need for some celestial parameters to all be met in the universe, that I’m simply not seeing? I truly enjoyed some of the insights of her book. I love the one full swoop strategy she employs. Gathering everything from the same category all at once, deciding on keep/donate/discard, then putting away is brilliant and helpful. Other strategies I found myself being slightly critical. She tends to use the work discard quite freely, which makes me fearful about wastefulness. This could just be the prose in which Marie Kondo was writing, a cultural attitude around discarding unwanted items, or an issue resulting from translation. So, I’d love to know a bit more before I rush to judge. Truly, I felt she tends to speak more around discarding rather than donating.
In the midst of this minimalist movement in our lives, it has been fulfilling to part with things and give them to friends. That has been a spark joy moment helping friends out or simply giving gifts in a thoughtful manner.
So, using KonMari, I went back into the clothes, and was able to get it trimmed down even far. I’m at 45 items of clothing. After factoring athletic gear and undergarments, we’re certainly under 80 pieces of clothing total. A definite improvement. The folding method for clothes will take some getting used to, given our dresser drawer dimensions.
Books was an easy category. We don’t own many books. My wife uses a kindle, I have been on a library kick. We typically gift books and receive a book or two a year, read them, then pass them on. So it wasn’t much other than a few old Nintendo Power magazines that I’ll be parting with so someone else can enjoy them.
We are currently on, Papers. That means our filing cabinet could have its days numbered. This will be one that might require the enlistment of a larger shredder.
What are the most helpful strategies to attack what I feel is the largest category? It seems so nebulous and broad, and is where we might own the most possessions here. I found this website that broke it down in a nice visual manner, but do folks try other ways? I feel like we might have some overlap already, having done a packing party. I am truly curious about people’s thoughts on this matter. We both have a good number of items dedicated to our hobbies (crafting and gaming, respectively) However, my wife has already attacked some crafts and office supplies, so it seems we’re already heading into the thick of it.
Our Approach (Realistically):
Watch out, we’re about to do some scientific research. This could be dangerous, you’re forewarned. (Courtesy: JEPS Blog)
Truthfully, there’s no one-size fits all method to diminishing what we need or want in our lives. I think it’s a mode of thinking that only comes with discipline and forming/sticking with habits. But, I think combining strategies from The Minimalists and Marie Kondo and fusing it into our approaches are yielding good results. The 333 Project gets a shout out too. However, we’re not storing things in every space, and we’ve got plenty to send off to those who could truly need it or enjoy it. I hope this little glimpse about a third of the way into the first month is helpful. I’ll be back tomorrow, please share your thoughts with me. Have a great remainder of the week and an enjoyable weekend!