About the KonMari Method – KonMari | The Official Website of Marie Kondo

KonMari Method™: Fundamentals of Tidying is a digital tidying course that offers step-by-step visual guide to mastering the KonMari Method.

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What is the KonMari Method™ ?

The KonMari Method is a simple but effective tidying method, ensuring you will never again relapse to clutter. It uses a unique selection criterion – choosing what sparks joy! You are not choosing what to discard but rather choosing to keep only the items that speak to your heart. Through tidying, you can reset your life and spend the rest of your life surrounded by the people and things that you love the most. 

Overview

Most tidying methods advocate a room-by-room or little-by-little approach, which doom you to pick away at your piles of stuff forever.

The KonMari Method™ encourages tidying by category – not by location – beginning with clothes, then moving on to books, papers, komono (miscellaneous items), and, finally, sentimental items. Keep only those things that speak to the heart, and discard items that no longer spark joy. Thank them for their service – then let them go.

People around the world have been drawn to this philosophy not only due to its effectiveness, but also because it places great importance on being mindful, introspective and forward-looking.

“Life truly begins only after you have put your house in order.” – Marie Kondo
Why Tidy?

Tidying is a powerful tool, but it’s not the destination. The true goal of tidying is to clear away clutter so you can live the life you want. When you put your house in order using the KonMari Method™, you have no choice but to listen to your inner voice – because the question of what you want to own is actually the question of how you want to live your life. When you reassess your belongings and organize your home, you set the stage for a huge transformation. This is the magic of tidying!

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Experience the Magic of Tidying

You can’t tidy if you’ve never learned how. By studying and applying the KonMari Method, you can escape the vicious cycle of clutter. Concentrate your energy on eliminating clutter thoroughly and completely, all in one go, you’ll see instant results that will empower you to keep your space in order ever after.

Read the Book
KonMari Method™: Fundamentals of Tidying
The 6 Basic Rules of Tidying
Rule 1: Commit Yourself to Tidying Up
Rule 1: Commit Yourself to Tidying Up

The KonMari Method™ is not a quick fix for a messy room or a once-in-a-while approach to tidying.  It’s a chance to reset your entire life – but only if you commit to following its principles.

Setting the intention to seriously tidy up – and resolving to put in the time and effort required – is the first rule of tidying.  When you approach your tidying festival with a clear vision and a can-do attitude, you’ll find the energy and motivation you need to tidy all of your belongings in one go.

The effort will be worth it in the end.  Not only will you experience the joy of living with objects you love, but you’ll also be on the path to establishing your ideal lifestyle.

Ready to move to the next rule? Proceed to Imagine Your Ideal Lifestyle in the 6 Rules of Tidying.

Rule 2: Imagine Your Ideal Lifestyle
Rule 2: Imagine Your Ideal Lifestyle

Marie’s tidying process is not about decluttering your house or making it look neat on the spur of the moment for visitors.  It’s about tidying up in a way that will spark joy in your life and change it forever.

Think about what kind of house you want to live in and how you want to live in it.  In other words, describe your ideal lifestyle.  If you like drawing, sketch out what it looks like.  If you prefer to write, describe it in a notebook.  You can also cut out photos from magazines.

When you imagine your ideal lifestyle, you are really clarifying why you want to tidy and envisioning your best life.  The tidying process represents a turning point – so seriously consider the ideal lifestyle to which you aspire.

Marie walks us through this process, above.

Ready to move to the next rule? Proceed to Finish Discarding First in the 6 Rules of Tidying.

Rule 3: Finish Discarding First
Rule 3: Finish Discarding First

As you embark on your tidying adventure using the KonMari Method™, remember to focus on what you want to keep.  Cherish the items that bring you joy, and let go of the rest with gratitude.

Discarding is not the point of the KonMari Method™, but it is an important part of the process because it provides an opportunity to learn from your past experiences.  If you let go of a belonging you never used, it taught that you have no purpose for something like it in your life.  Thinking deeply about each item you discard will affect how you live and acquire new things moving forward.

On a practical level, discarding first also allows you to have an accurate grasp of how much actually needs to be stored.  Only after you’ve discarded can you turn your full energy and attention to that which brings you joy.

In the example above, Marie lets go of sentimental items – photos – with a proper send off, using salt (a Japanese purification ritual) and expressing gratitude for what they’ve taught her.

Ready to move to the next rule? Proceed to Tidy by Category, Not by Location in the 6 Rules of Tidying.

Rule 4: Tidy by Category, Not by Location
Rule 4: Tidy by Category, Not by Location

It might seem logical to tackle one shelf, closet or room at a time.  But tidying this way will doom you to a life of clutter.  In order to tidy up completely – and change your life forever – you must tidy by category, not by location.

People often store the same type of item in more than one place.  When you tidy each place separately, you’re repeating the same work in many locations.  You can never grasp the overall volume of each type of thing you own – you’re more likely to keep the paperclips in your office if you don’t take into account the stockpile in the attic.  The result is that you become locked in a never-ending cycle of tidying.

Tidy by category – clothes, books, papers, komono (miscellaneous items) and then sentimental items – and you’re on the path to success.

Ready to move to the next rule? Proceed to Follow the Right Order in the 6 Rules of Tidying.

Rule 5: Follow the Right Order
Rule 5: Follow the Right Order

The order in which you tidy is crucial. Take it from Marie – she landed on this vital step of the KonMari Method™ after conducting hours of tidying lessons with clients. Tidying your belongings in this order – clothes, books, papers, komono and sentimental items – has proven to be the most efficient and effective.

By starting with clothes (relatively easy) and ending with sentimental items (challenging), you hone your decision making skills as you go; by the end, choosing what to keep seems simple.  There’s another reason clothes come first: Completing that category provides tangible proof of your efforts.  Being greeted by your favorite clothes in a tidied closet each morning is motivation to keep going!

As you move through each category, your energy and enthusiasm increases; you may be physically tired, but getting rid of unnecessary clutter acts as an invigorating pick-me-up. Throughout the process, you gain a deeper understanding of the method – and of yourself.

Ready to move to the next rule? Proceed to Ask Yourself If It Sparks Joy in the 6 Rules of Tidying.

Rule 6: Ask Yourself If It Sparks Joy
Rule 6: Ask Yourself If It Sparks Joy

Only you can know what kind of environment makes you happy – this is the underlying principle of the KonMari Method™.  It’s also what sets it apart from other tidying techniques that rely on strict guidelines instead of personal criteria.  You’ve probably heard “Discard anything you haven’t used in two years,” or “Every time you buy something new, get rid of something old.” But Marie’s method is different.

In the KonMari Method™, your feelings are the standard for decision making – specifically, knowing what sparks joy.  To determine this when tidying, the key is to pick up each object one at a time, and ask yourself quietly, “Does this spark joy?”  Pay attention to how your body responds.  Joy is personal, so everyone will experience it differently; Marie describes it as “…a little thrill, as if the cells in your body are slowly rising.”

Through the process of selecting only those things that inspire joy, you can identify precisely what you love – and what you need.

Need a refresher? Review the 6 Rules of Tidying.

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