Out of clutter, find simplicity. — Albert Einstein
Since it’s time for many of us to tackle our spring cleaning (or fall cleaning for my Southern Hemisphere readers), I thought it would be timely to talk about the benefits of decluttering.
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by the Japanese organizing consultant and author Marie Kondo is a good starting point.
She was certainly not the first person to propose that decluttering your home would have a positive effect to your psyche. But her KonMari method has become the go-to guide for those who are desperate to see the clutter go.
Since then, a lot more decluttering systems have made their way to the mainstream. Part of why these decluttering tips are very popular is because they help in the reevaluating our purpose. Let us take a look at how we can apply some principles from Kondo’s book in the process of decluttering our lives:
Do not let guilt get into the way of what you have to do
One of the things that Kondo taught in her book is that we keep a lot of things in our house because we are guilty about getting rid of them. This principle can also be applied more generally, to relationships, jobs, etc. The level of thought that goes into would obviously be very different: It’s much different to quit a job than it is to toss out some old newspapers. But the underlying idea is the same: If guilt is your main reason for hanging on, it’s time to reevaluate the item, situation, or relationship.
Do what makes you feel joy
The phrase “Does this spark joy?” is often repeated in Kondo’s book. In the book, Kondo suggests to consider the value of things in how you live. If it makes you happy, you get to keep it. If it doesn’t, you have to get rid of it. In life, it should be that way too. You will be surprised by how much baggage you will realize by the end of this exercise.
Things will get worse before they get better
Tracy Morgan once said “Everything works out in the end. if it hasn’t worked out yet, then it’s not the end.” Amen.
Learn to compartmentalize
When faced with multiple problems and issues in your life, it is important for someone to learn to compartmentalize them and address without it affecting other parts of how you live.
Letting go feels good
In Kondo’s book, it is recommended that a person should reassess the role of a certain thing in his/her room. It is the same thing with how life should be managed. Letting go of things that you no longer feel connected to can feel good.
What suggestions do you have for decluttering your home and your life?