Part 1 : The Clothes
It really DID change my life.
If you don’t know what I am referring to, I am talking about Marie Kondo’s book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up also known as the Kon Mari method.
Marie Kondo’s book has sold millions of copies all over the world in people’s quest to gain sanity on the clutter that takes up their world. Her belief is that once you keep only things that make you feel good (aka Spark Joy), you rid yourself of the chaos around you, and help put your mind at peace.
I have to agree that Marie was totally right about many things in her book. I 100% did in fact feel more at peace when this process was complete. I DO think it is totally worth it to do it and will tell you at the end of this series how it changed us.
If you are anything like me, you look to September as almost another New Year. A fresh start as the kids get ready to go back to school. Summer is too full of fun and activity to be indoors, so once they are back at school and routine is back to normal this is a great time to jump into Kon Mari.
I am offering the cheat sheet Coles Notes version of Kon Mari for you in this series where we will talk about top tips, include vlogs about time, effort, and emotions and bundle it all up for you to check out at your leisure.
So let’s jump in shall we?
First stop, your clothes.
Why you first? Let’s be honest, if you are reading this its because you are likely leading this charge. It’s important to get comfortable with this process before encouraging anyone else to.
1) Go All In.
This is KEY. A big difference in doing Kon Mari vs just doing a typical purge of your house is the focus on categories vs rooms. Essentially you take every last stitch of clothing you have, put it in a huge pile and sort.
As you pick up a piece of clothing, you ask yourself “Does this spark joy?” to help you decide to keep it or leave it.
I know, what on earth does that mean?
- It means that if you have a pair of pants that you’ve been keeping in your closet for the last 3 years waiting till you get back to the weight you once were, get rid of them. They don’t spark you joy. They make you feel miserable because you aren’t your old weight.
- It means if you have a top with its tag on that you’ve never worn, you are not going to and its just taking up valuable space in your closet and in your head. Gone.
- It means sometimes we keep things for sentimental reasons but the clothes no longer suit us. Have a T-Shirt that you can no longer wear out in public because of the holes or stains? Find a way to mark the memory and let it go. If it’s not useful it’s not serving you.
Once you pick up the piece of clothing, you check in as to whether or not its worth keeping. You thank it for its service. (I thought this was a bit kooky but it did make sense after awhile.)
Then you make a choice. Keep or Go.
Thank it for its service?
Here’s how it works:
- The clothes with the tag still on? It served you by showing you what not to buy in the future and perhaps be more cautious in what you spend money on.
- The smaller size clothes? It served you at the time you wore them but no longer does. I still kept ONE outfit to work towards but the other 6 pairs of pants, 5 dresses and 6 tops were donated.
- The dress that has the hem loose and is currently held together inside by duct tape. Decide. Is it feasible to fix properly or has it reached its limit of service?
2) You GOTTA Let That Go.
Be prepared for an emotional roller coaster. Clothes are a protective layer to your onion. You can disguise, hide, cover up or show yourself off in what you wear. Like music, clothes can instantly take you back to a special moment in your life. The question becomes, are you only holding onto a piece of clothing to spark a memory? If so, think of the space its taking up in your world. Is it worth the compromise keeping a piece of fabric for the purpose of a good recollection or are there other ways you can keep that memory close without the physical consumption of space?
3) Discover & learn about yourself.
As you do Kon Mari, you start to see patterns emerge. Discovering how you purchase and why you purchase can make huge in-roads in finding those pieces that spark joy. Learn from them. Use them to define how you purge and how you will function in the future. When you see it all at once, the specifics of your habits become readily apparent.
Through our Kon Mari process, I discovered a few things:
- I love the colour blue and I have bought clothing simply based on the beauty of the hue even when the fit doesn’t fit.
- I like having an outside pocket for my phone in my purse and one that fits my laptop. I also love handles that sling over my shoulder. Missing those elements and it was easy to get rid of any that didn’t fit my criteria.
- I buy empire waist shirts and then realize when I get home that I look 5 months pregnant. I buy them because I THINK they will look good. When I ultimately put them on, they go back into the closet.
- I love shoes. Who doesn’t.
- I have 41 sweaters ALL with sleeves that cozily pass over my wrists, with no buttons and spread in shades from charcoal to smoke.
Kon Mari takes time.
Know that & not stress out if it’s not done in one weekend. Take your time. This is an emotional experience but one so, so worth doing.
Clothes Purge 4 hours.
4 Family members.