The annual “spring clean” comes round every year. We all make the changes, put things in order and then a few weeks later, the house is back to its messy ways. What if we could declutter our lives for good? What if we could all invite Marie Kondo into our homes?
As a Certified KonMari Consultant, Anna Fenn promises us just that with her everyday toolkit for a tidy life. Anna runs her consulting business Optimise Your Space in London, helping clients transform their cluttered homes into an oasis of organised calm. Sounds bliss, right?
Is your home wonderfully neat or downright messy?
I’m not talking about the days when you have guests over and want to impress.. but your typical day where nobody visits. Can you find the things you need at a moment’s notice or are they hidden beneath a mountain of stuff?
The majority of people I’ve met fall into one category or another. Extremely neat or disorganised to the core! Which do you resonate with?
Absolutely zero judgements here! Your organisational level doesn’t make you a good or bad person but it can impact greatly on your quality of life stress-wise.
I’m so fascinated about decluttering having seen the actual joy it can bring to people’s lives when they live in an organised home. I had no idea when I stumbled upon the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo how passionate I would become with the concept and benefits of home organisation.
Marie Kondos philosophy makes the concept of decluttering so simple! I was hooked from the first chapter and it totally changed the way I viewed my own home. It sparked the idea in me that this was something I could do to help others achieve harmony in their own lives.
My first official step towards this goal came in 2018 when I signed up for Marie Kondo’s first European seminar and became fully certified as a KonMari Consultant.
When I mentioned to people that I was training to become a KonMari consultant some couldn’t help but laugh. How can you teach someone how to tidy? Who would ever be interested in such a topic? You are either an organised person or not. However, as they have come to learn, tidying is a skill that can be learned!
So what did I learn from my training?
I learnt that the following is true:
“The lives of those who tidy thoroughly and completely, in a single shot, are without exception dramatically altered.” Marie Kondo
Decluttering your home takes time but is worth the effort. There is no magic shortcut, particularly when you have built up a lifetime of possessions. Once you complete your tidying marathon it becomes simple. Your daily life focuses on maintenance instead of the drudgery of sifting through unwanted clutter.
I also learned that it’s not about getting rid of everything but highlighting what brings you the most joy in your home. I find that many of the things my clients are passionate about usually are hidden away! I say it’s time to display your treasured shoe collection with pride!
Follow The Method
The only way to tackle your household clutter is to go through it all. Sort your items by categories instead of by rooms. By following this order you ensure that every area of your home is organised. Starting with clothes and progressing onto books, papers, komono (the Japanese word for miscellaneous- which is subcategorised for ease ) and lastly sentimental items e.g photo albums, letters or children’s art.
Approaching your Tidying Marathon
By tidying your home using Marie’s method you will undertake the most thorough analysis of all your earthly possessions! The word marathon can feel like a hefty undertaking but remember this means you can take it at your own pace! It’s not a sprint after all and as the wise fable goes – slow and steady wins the race!
Take plenty of tea breaks and walk in the fresh air. Your belongings hold so many memories that you need time to recoup in between sessions. Believe me when I say that joy that will enter your life once your entire possessions are in order.
“All you need to do is take the time to sit down and examine each item you own, decide whether you want to keep or discard it, and then choose where to put what you keep” Marie Kondo
Why is this Method so effective?
We can spend hours doing something but if it’s not done properly it just means we have to spend even more time repeating the process. Who wants that? The essence of this method is tidying once and tidying properly. Even Marie doesn’t want to tidy all the time!
Tidying is a special event. Don’t do it every day.” Marie Kondo
So with that in mind let’s look at two ways you can save time with effective tidying so that your days are spent doing more of what you love!
Visualise your ideal home
Being general about your tidying goals will only delay what you’re hoping to achieve. Think in specific terms so that you can clearly imagine what it would be like to live in a home free from clutter. How does it make you feel? The feeling it evokes is just as important as the image of the lifestyle.
Research has shown that you’re twice as likely to achieve your goals simply by writing them down! So get yourself off to an inspiring start by designing your own vision board!
Work Smart, Not Hard
No one wants to spend their lives organising but by keeping on top of your tidying you ensure that your precious time is spent on things that really matter to you. Once you have completed your tidying marathon, minimal tidy ups are all that’s required.
So, put everything away as soon as you use it! Your belongings will all now have their own special place so this won’t be difficult. This way things don’t go missing and you keep your countertops clear. Clean surfaces are like a free massage to your brain.
To find out more about the legend that is Marie Kondo- method check out our summary of the Method and get started!
Anna Fenn is a Certified KonMari Consultant. Through her work, she combines her passion for environmental sustainability with efficient organisation skills using the renowned Marie Kondo Method. Today she runs her consulting business Optimise Your Space in London, helping clients transform their cluttered homes into an oasis of organised calm. You can find out more about Anna at www.optimiseyourspace.com