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Thursday, January 3, 2019

Marie Kondo Tidying Up on Netflix and The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up Review & Lessons Learned

Not Sponsored. Cleaning Up. Tidying Up. Throwing Out. Organizing. Those are common phrases we see & hear in the beginning of the year, Spring and leading into the holiday season. I bet you've heard of Marie Kondo. She is very popular! She's a Japanese organizing consultant and author of "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" (2012), "Spark Joy"(2012), "The Life Changing Manga of Tidying Up"(2015), and "Life Changing Magic A Journal Spark Joy Everyday"(2016). I just finished reading her first book and was happy to hear that she has an eight-part series on Netflix called "Tidying Up" (this series started January 1st, 2019). I binged watched all eight episodes within two days. They're only 30-40 minutes each. Very watchable. If you can read her first book FIRST, I think you'll get more out of the Netflix series. It's only a 206 page book. I read 50 pages a night and finished it within four days. A lot touched me about that book. It contains some very valuable lessons. I will cover some of them below. I am seriously going to implement them in my life. The Netflix Series showcases eight couples (straight, gay, young, middle-aged, widowed, older). There are various degrees of clutter & organizing problems. There are also personal issues. At first I skipped all the episodes with children (because I don't have any). Don't do that! Even if you don't think you will relate to an episode, trust me after watching it you will. Start with the FIRST EPISODE and WATCH THEM IN ORDER. There are lessons for all in each one. I would also encourage you to keep a pen & paper handy. You will want to write down some of the "lessons" or things that have touched you. You will see good behavior and bad behavior. You will see changes. There will be insights and epiphanies. I feel Marie Kondo is a little stricter in her book than on the series. I kept saying, "You're going to let them get away with that! LOL" That's why I suggest reading the book first. But all in all, I love both and feel Netflix will bring it back for another season. Now, I would like to share with you some practices that touched me in her book.

Lessons Learned from the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
1. Does It Spark Joy? - You will see these words, throughout her book. You are to throw ALL of your clothes in a pile on the floor (in the middle of the room), pick up each piece INDIVIDUALLY and ask does that piece of clothing SPARK JOY (does it make you HAPPY. does it give you a THRILL) in you. If it does, KEEP IT. If it doesn't, GET RID OF IT. This should be done with EVERYTHING (clothes, books, papers, komono and sentimental items). YOU SHOULD BE SURROUNDED ONLY BY THINGS YOU LOVE!

2. Visualize How You Would Like A Room To End Up - I thought this was really insightful. When I remodeled my home a couple of years ago, I took each room and visualized how I wanted it to look & what I wanted in it. Visualize a clutter free space! What is your dream for each room?

3. Take Ownership Of Your Stuff - The process of discarding and keeping items, should be on an individual basis. The decision should be yours and yours only. Don't ask someone if you should keep a particular skirt or blouse. Also, you should not tell someone what to do! Example: You don't wear those pants! Get rid of them! Don't tell others what to get rid of. Let them decide if a particular item  sparks joy or not. This should be an individual process.

4. Giving Your Stuff To Others/Family Members - This may not be a good idea. Yes, it de-clutters YOUR CLOSET, but the clutter is then transferred to that person. I know you're saying, well the person accepted it. Yes, but sometimes that person will feel obligated to do so. They may sincerely want it and use it. They may not. She sees this a lot in siblings, where the oldest child passes on things to the youngest. You should also not leave or send unwanted items to your parents. They are not responsible for YOUR things.

5. Discard First. Then Think About Storage. It's important to discard completely before even considering storage. If you don't discard completely, everything is going to end up in disarray again. You will have too much stuff.

6. Everything Must Have A Place. That's the only way to stay organized and it truly makes sense. Is there a spot for the dress you're wearing? When you take your shoes off, where will you put them? When you remove your belt, where will you place it? Is there a spot for your handbags, jewelry and hats? When you take off something, where does it go? It must have a "home". If it doesn't have a home, you will end up with clutter.

7. Say, THANK YOU to your items! Appreciate Your Possessions. I smiled when I read that statement. At the end of the day, say THANK YOU home for providing me shelter. Say THANK YOU dress for making me even more  beautiful today. Say THANK YOU watch for letting me know the time. You don't have to say these things out loud, but you can say them in your head. Also TAKE CARE OF YOUR POSSESSIONS! This means when you're washing clothes, folding them, etc. They will last longer.

8. Folding Techniques - Kondo describes various folding techniques in her first book, but there are no illustrations. These are illustrated in her second book "Spark Joy". But in her Netflix series, she shows folding techniques in EACH episode (so you'll have to watch all the episodes to see her techniques). The main concept here is to fold everything in a rectangle and have it stand up. I haven't tried this yet, but I plan on giving it a go ;)

9. Fresh Air, Aromatherapy, Candles - Kondo believes when you're about to work in a room you should open the windows to let fresh air in, light a candle or have some type of aromatherapy to keep you in a POSITIVE PRODUCTIVE MOOD. Also tidy early in the morning.

10. Let Go Of The Past. Your focus should be the PRESENT. You should ask yourself do the things you have (plan on keeping), will they take you into the FUTURE. You should get rid of mementos from ex-boyfriends, ex-husbands, ex-girlfriends, ex-wives etc. Don't let the PAST, HOLD YOU BACK from a REWARDING FUTURE. Those people have probably moved on and so should you.

11. Discard and Downsize. Feel Better. By putting things in PILES, you will see how much stuff you actually have in your possession. By discarding things that are in bad shape, that no longer bring joy and downsizing will make you feel better. It will be a load and weight lifted off your shoulders! You will feel better having only things you love and less of stuff. It will be manageable and not overwhelming. Also your home will look better (and less cluttered).

12. Goodbye, but THANK YOU! Don't feel bad letting something go! Or something that didn't work? Thank that item (you're about to discard) for teaching you, short sleeves just don't look good on you. Thank that item (you're about to discard) for teaching you, teal is not a good color for you. Thank that item (you're about to discard) for teaching you stripes are not your thing. Kondo believes even if things don't work for you, they have taught you a valuable lesson. DISCARD THEM. DONATE THEM. They may work and bring joy to someone else. Thank you for teaching me what doesn't suit me. It has fulfilled it's function. "Make your parting a ceremony to launch them on a new journey."

13. Buy a book. Read it right away. I think we're all guilty of this! We go to the bookstore (or place an order online) and buy several books. We bring them home. We may read one, a few, none or part of one. They sit and sit! We never get back to reading them. We swear we will read them. It doesn't happen. LOL Don't force yourself to read them. When you first purchased the book, it sparked joy! The book may not serve a purpose later (months or years later). When you purchase it, read it right away. If this means, buying one or two books at a time instead of many then change your purchasing habits.

14. Discard cords. Are they connected to anything? You don't need them.

15. Paperwork - You only need temporary paperwork such as bills (then discard). Keep important papers such as insurance papers, contractual documents. Discard manuals etc.

16. Detox Your House - I loved. Loved. LOVED THIS STATEMENT! "When we reduce what we own, and essentially "detox"our house, it has a detox effect on our bodies as well."

These are just some of the valuable things I got out of this book. Things that resonated with me. There's so many more in this book! Pick up a copy and see what lessons touch you. I've already done some of these in my home. Later this year, I'll probably write a post showing what techniques worked for me. Its one of my 2019 goals. But I thought this overview would be helpful. Have a great day!

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