The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up

10 Lessons Learned from “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up”

This article was last updated on September 5, 2017

Marie Kondo is a Japanese organization consultant who has received much praise globally for her methods. Those who have tried her organizational methods equate them to magic that has helped them transform their lives. All of her tips and tricks to staying organized are contained in a little book titled ‘The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up

Her services are highly sough after and her waiting list is a mile long in Japan. However, for the rest of us, her book will suffice. Her approach to tidying up is surprisingly simple. First, she recommends that you place your hands on everything that you own. If it gives you joy, keep it. If it does not give you any joy, you need to get rid of it. Secondly, once you only have items that give you joy; place everything in a place where it is accessible, visible, and easy to reach. It is only after that that Kondo says you will have achieved organizational nirvana. If you do get the opportunity to read the book, here are some of the lesson you will learn.

10 Lessons Learned from “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up”

1. Deal With Categories Not Rooms

Most people tackle clutter in their house room by room. They start in the bedroom, move to the sitting room and so on. However, Kondo recommends that you tidy up the house by category. For instance, you can start with books. Look for every book in the house and begin to tidy up. Otherwise, you will always have to deal with every book in every room continuously. In short, you will never get rid of clutter in the house. In her book, she recommends that you start with clothes. The reason for this is that they are the least emotional of your items. At the end of the process it is recommended that you arrange old photos.

2. Empathize With Your Belongings

Perhaps one reason you have been failing to get rid of clutter is that you take too much time to weigh its benefits. If you look at your belonging with an empathetic eye, it could help you get rid of clutter. Kondo requests that you consider the feelings of your clothes. It may sound like too much when you read it. However, if you think about it, you will find that you want to make your things as comfortable as possible.

3. Avoid Being Nostalgic

When you are tidying up the home or your office desk, you will undoubtedly come across nostalgic items. For instance, you may open a drawer and find an old letter from a friend. If you begin going through the letter or the photos, you will surely go down the rabbit hole.

4. Understand the Why

The entire exercise in tidying up will be pointless if you do not have a clear reason why you are doing it. If you understand the why, it will be more fulfilling, and you will be more likely to stick to the process of domestic cleaning. Ask yourself as many questions as possible and have a definitive answer for each.

5. Get Rid of Clutter First

Marie Kondo believes that most have a hard time keeping their personal space tidy because they have too many things. In short, there is just not enough space for everything they own. The first step into tidying up is to declutter your work desk regularly. Get everything in the storage spaces in the office out and place it where you can see it. Proceed to get rid everything that you do not need.

6. Avoid Stockpiling

According to Kondo, one of the reasons why people have clutter in their office is that they purchase too much of one item at a go. However, it will mean that you have less space for other items, which you need in the office. If you are thinking of organizing your office for maximum efficiency, Marie Kondo recommends that you avoid stockpiling. You need to believe that the items you purchase today will be available the next time you need them. Unless it is something very rare, there is a good chance that you will always find more of it.

7.  Use the Vertical Fold

One of the best lessons to keeping your clothes tidy from Kondo is to use the vertical fold. This method has many advantages for you. For one, it means that your clothes will not have to be messed up every time you need to find an item of clothing. In short, place the folded clothes vertically instead of horizontally. To keep your clothes standing, Kondo recommends that you use shoe boxes, which will act as dividers. Use different sizes of boxes for different types of items. When you open your drawer, you will see all of them in one go. Not only does it help to stay tidy but it also means that you save time when you are in a hurry.

8.    Look for the Reason You Begin If You Slip Back to Clutter

Most people have clutter because it serves as a distraction. When you maintain clutter, it means that you will not have room in your mind for much else. That way, you do not have to deal with other issues. Ask yourself what you are using clutter to distract yourself from. What thoughts does a clean and tidy room bring to mind? By thinking about the answer to this question, it could help you solve the main reason you love a disorganized room.

9.  Assign Everything a Place

If you are having a hard time with clutter, an effective method of getting rid of it is to ensure that you have a place for everything. It could be a shelf or a drawer. Whatever the place does not matter. The most important thing is that when you place it somewhere, that is where you will return it every time. You can even use place labels to help you remember where everything needs to be. However, ensure that you pick a practical place where it is easy to retrieve and put back the item.

10.  Start With Items You Own

In “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” Marie Kondo recommends you begin tidying up by focusing on items, which you own. Sometimes, the reason a house is untidy is that no one is willing to make the first move. The result is that it leads to endless arguments with no one willing to make the first move. Stop trying to nag people into submission and lead by example. When you make a change and start being tidy, you will find that others will follow your example.

Final Thoughts

When you begin to implement the lessons contained in the amazing book by Marie Kondo, you will begin to see psychological and physical benefits as well. For instance, cleaning the house or the office will become quite easy. Best of all, you do not have to spend any money to implement most of the lessons, except maybe to buy the book. Consider checking out the book today and try out the lessons. No matter where you live, you can adapt them to your unique situation.

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