I was drowning in clutter too…
Those of you that know me well know that I am a bit of a pack rat…ok, ok…a full on pack rat. My husband tells me I’m a hoarder, but I don’t think I’ve taken it that far (and hopefully never will). I am a very practical person, if I can see myself using something down the road then I will keep it, my logic is there is no sense throwing it away and then having to re-buy it in a year, five years, ten years – ever for that matter. Unfortunately this had left me with stuff piling up and accumulating. My home was constantly cluttered, it was stressing me out and cleaning it up took time that I seem to never have enough of.
I knew something had to give – I looked into organization systems and ways to store all this stuff, but that didn’t work I started reading minimalism articles and frankly they just scared me, my hold on stuff was deep. Then I started hearing people talk about this Konmari Method and something about asking yourself if these item (aka stuff) brought joy. I thought that was a decent way of looking at it and I started walking through my house asking if certain items “brought me joy” and I got rid of *some* stuff. But … I justified keeping things and my home was still cluttered.
During that time I found out we were moving and I started packing boxes with that theory and then justifying keeping things so the boxes really started to pile up. I had started admiring friends homes which were clutter-free and tried to figure out what I wanted me home to be like. Simple. That was the word that came to mind. I wanted my home to be simple and clutter free.
So I jumped on the bandwagon and bought the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. I was instantly hooked. It made me really dig deep into my person and really evaluate why I had such a need and hold on stuff. It made me look at my why and what I wanted my home to be like, what type of vibe my home was putting off. The constant battle of stuff just stressed everyone out, it didn’t make my home simple and relaxing. I didn’t quite do it all in one shot as I had already started packing boxes, so I am still sorting through things and getting rid of stuff. But as I started to let go and getting rid of things, let me tell you – it was so incredibly freeing. I sold whatever I could, donated the things that I couldn’t sell and then trashed a bunch of stuff as well. Somethings I just had to throw away, I knew there was no use and the item didn’t “spark joy” like it should but my hold on it was unreasonable strong. There were even some things I had to ask Josiah to just throw away because I couldn’t (yes, embarrassing, but true).
My home was such a modge podge of things and there were so many unnecessary items. If I didn’t love it, I got rid of it and will save towards a purchase that I love instead of keeping something just because I have it. I still have a ways to go, but already there is so much less stuff and my home is a lot more simple. I am up to about 78 (yes that many) garbage bags worth of stuff that I have gotten rid of and the number seems to grow by at least one each day. I am finding that I don’t need all these things and not having them doesn’t make wish I did, I honestly don’t miss any of it. There has been one or two small items that got tossed that we have needed to replace, but all very small items. It has brought me much greater joy to be free from the stuff and the clutter.
How to start clearing the clutter:
Here are some of the basic principles of the KonMari Method:
1. Discard first and deal with storage later
2. Sort by category, not by room
3. Ask yourself as you are discarding ‘does this item spark joy’
4. You should only surround yourself with items that bring you joy
5. Fancy storage solutions and containers are not the answer
6. Never pile things – store them vertically
7. Tidy a little a day and you’ll be tidying forever
8. Learn how to fold things properly
To learn more about this method of cleaning up the clutter pick up a copy of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing
I want a simple, joyful home and everything around me should be a reflection of that. What do you want your home to be like? Does your home “spark joy”? Have you tried this method? How has it worked for you?