Want to learn how to declutter your life, but don’t know where to start? We recommend following the lead of Marie Kondo, the star of Netflix’s Tidying Up with Marie Kondo and author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, a global bestseller.
Without a question, this woman is brilliant at helping people declutter their homes and tidy up using tips they can follow forever. Scroll down to see our favorite pieces of advice from the KonMari method.
1. Only Keep What Sparks Joy
Asking yourself “Does this bring me joy?” is the most famous step in the KonMari method. Marie Kondo insists you hold each of your belongings—specifically your clothes—and ask yourself this question. If the item doesn’t bring you joy, it’s time to donate it. She insists you’ll know the answer immediately!
2. Declutter First, Organize Second
If you were thinking of organizing before you declutter, we’ll stop you right there because you’re breaking the rules!
“Effective tidying involves only two essential actions: discarding and deciding where to keep things,” Marie Kondo advises in The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. “Of the two, discarding must come first.”
After all, organizing things you shouldn’t keep adds additional time onto your cleaning spree—the less stuff you own, the faster you can organize it.
3. Tidy by Category
Stop tidying room by room and start cleaning by category. Rather than tackling each room individually, Marie Kondo recommends you declutter by item type like appliances, clothing, cosmetics and so on.
“The root of the problem lies in the fact that people often store the same type of item in more than one place,” she explains.
4. Everything Has Its Place
According to the KonMari method, all your belongings need to have a designated home. The idea is to use hooks, shelves and storage bins, along with a good labeling system, to ensure you know where to store everything you own when you’re done using it.
5. Store Items Vertically
Like most people, you probably pile clothes in your dresser horizontally. Marie Kondo doesn’t like that. She encourages storing items vertically—like your folded t-shirts and fridge containers—so they’re more eye-catching and it’s easier to see your possessions.
6. Recycle Old Papers
Don’t leave your old bills and unwanted papers stuffed into accordion files and desk drawers. Go through them and recycle what you no longer need. On a similar note, why not take a second to move your bills to digital?
7. Keep Coins in Your Wallet
If Marie Kondo doesn’t believe in piggy banks or coin jars, then she certainly doesn’t approve of you emptying your pockets anywhere you please. She recommends keeping loose change in your wallet, so you actually spend it, rather than create household clutter.
Want to add some life to your home? Check out these 17 Houseplants that are Easy to Care for.
Featured photo by Ryan Christodoulou on Unsplash
Melody Lowe is the Director of Content & Strategy for Blender Networks, Inc. When she’s not managing blogs for FitMinutes, The-E-Tailer, Cartageous, InStyleRooms, NurturedPaws & Shoelistic, she’s rearranging her bookcase at home in Culver City, CA, getting her fix of breakfast tacos and Topo Chicos in her hometown of Austin, TX with her fiancé and rescue dog or managing her own blog, Mustache Melrose.