Organizing Ideas

Putting "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" to the test

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

The life changing magic of tidying up Image by: Getty Images

Organizing Ideas

Putting "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" to the test

Two women put the KonMari Method to work to ditch clutter for good.

Whether triggered by a stressful event or New Year’s resolution, cleaning and de-cluttering your space provides an unparalleled sense of satisfaction — which can become even greater by following the Method. 

The founder of the KonMari Method is Marie Kondo, master of de-cluttering and author of . The Method commands that you take a good hard look at your possessions by category — such as books, papers and clothes, instead of by room — and part ways with items that no longer spark joy. The goal is to release the sentimentality we often tie to objects, and find a way to declutter our spaces—and lives. 

We spoke with two women who both tried the KonMari Method, each coming from a different place of inspiration, to ultimately change their lives by way of tidying up.

 

The Motive

, a Toronto-born, LA-based illustrator, was craving some order and balance in her home-studio space: “I am a neat freak, but I had problem areas in my two-bedroom apartment. I use the second bedroom as my art studio and the closet in my art studio was my ‘Monica closet’—a packed floor-to-ceiling disaster.” Karen Brochu, sales director at a Canadian publishing house, came to the KonMari Method as a reaction to a breakup and a way to add a minimal feeling to a small space: “I had a huge desire to change something in my life, and as an added benefit I knew it would take my mind off things. I lived in a small bachelor apartment at the time; it had one furniture layout option and not much room for creativity. I decided to get rid of all my “stuff” and try and live a more minimal life.”

 

The Challenges

While both Karen and Jamie were meticulous students in most areas of their respective journeys, they each gave themselves a “pass” in certain categories. Karen, who works in publishing, crossed books off the list of items to toss, while Jamie found purging her accumulated works of art difficult to part with and ultimately held on to more than she intended. “I was pretty strict with myself to only keep artwork that I cherished, and I ended up with three storage bins (out of the four that I started with)," says Jamie. "I felt like I failed this section of the process because I could barely throw anything away. I even tried searching for KonMari-approved tips for sorting through artwork but couldn’t find anything that fit my specific needs. So, I gave myself a pass and moved on to the next category.” Similarly, Karen struggled to let go of small sentimental knick-knacks. But it was within this category that the basis of the process really kicked in, and Karen was able to detach the sentimental memory from the item in order to let it go. 

 

The Secret to Getting Through It

Jamie counted patience as a key tool for going through the lengthy process of assessing and purging, while Karen considered the timeline unrealistic for those who work out of their homes during the week, breaking up her “tidying” over the course of a few weekends. Even still, some of the rules seemed frivolous, including Jamie's ongoing search for a replacement for storage bins (particularly if you need to store seasonal items). Where Jamie found KonMari way of folding clothing — in particular socks — to be satisfying and easily integrated, Karen found it impractical to adopt as a lifestyle. 

 

The Results

Both KonMari students each had their own challenges with tidying, but ultimately the Method instilled a stronger sense of how stuff can accumulate. Both Karen and Jamie cited having a new sense of detachment from and even had improved spending habits. “I’ve realized that I really don’t need any more than I already have, and the things I do have seem to have a new energy about them now that I’ve made the conscious decision to keep them," says Jamie. "I still think of items I want, but I feel much less compelled to buy them unless absolutely necessary.” Echoing Jamie's sentiments, Karen said, “Rather than buying a little trinket that will make me happy, I treat myself to a nice meal or movie night out. Experiences bring me just as much joy, and they don’t end up collecting dust on my dresser.”

Photo Gallery

prev next 1 of 12

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

1 Organize your shoes

Organize your shoes with creative DIY storage solutions that are both simple and pretty.   Find the DIY instructions here.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Ryan Brook/TC Media

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

2 Keep your closet clean

No need to procrastinate when it comes to closet organization -- find useful organization tips here that will help clear up the clutter.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Donna Griffith

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

3 Banish kitchen clutter

Banish clutter, confusion and chaos in your kitchen with these tips.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Michael Nangreaves

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

4 Spruce up your entryway

A welcoming entryway needs to be clutter-free. Find helpful organizing ideas that will keep the entrance to your home tidy here.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Donna Griffith

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

5 Tackle the kids' room

Don't let the kids' bedrooms become a disaster-zone. Find helpful advice to keep their rooms organized here.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Joe Kim/TC Media

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

6 Bring order to the bathroom

Great products will take your beautiful bathroom from a chaotic mess to an organized haven. See our 10 product picks here.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Tracey Ayton

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

7 Spare no space

Small spaces can sometimes mean limited storage. Find 10 innovative storage solutions to keep your small space organized here.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Donna Griffith

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

8 Keep jewellery tangle-free

Organizing your jewellery doesn't have to be a struggle. Find helpful solutions to keep baubles in one place and free of tangles here.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Donna Griffith

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

9 Organize your linen closet

Use our easy, step-by-step approach to getting your linen closet organized. Find our tips here.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Donna Griffith

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

10 Update your flatware

It's important to keep your flatware looking neat and tidy but it's just as important to get rid of those dull knives and missing sets you don't use if you want to minimize the mess. Find essential flatware care tips plus some of our favourite sets here.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Stacey Brandford

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

11 Find stylish storage

It's important to find storage that is both functional and stylish. These amazing storage solutions will help keep your home looking clean, chic and clutter-free. Find all 10 storage solutions here.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Stacey Van Berkel

12 organizing ideas that will change your life

12 Tidy your home office

Papers, pens and stationery can sometimes take over your home office. Find simple tips and tricks here for keeping your office neat and tidy.

Image by: Style at Home By: harpendentaxis.info Source: Ryan Brook/TC Media

 

Comments

Share X
Organizing Ideas

Putting "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" to the test

  •