Friday, May 31, 2019

Konmari'ing My House! How did it go?

Last year I heard about this Marie Kondo book and grabbed a copy for my Kindle. I'm not an avid reader but I'm always wanting to be tidy (have been the exact opposite my whole life) so gave the book a shot. I think I gave up after the first chapter and put a Google alert out for the then upcoming Netflix show.

Viola! Google alerted me mid December that January 1st was the day, so on my countdown calendar it went and January 1st I sat down and watched all 4 or 5 episodes. How nice I thought and put it out of my mind. Then the spark hit me. Maybe it was all the chatter, or articles about overflowing Goodwill donations, I wanted to try it myself, so January 21th everything in my closets were put on the bed. I quickly read blog posts, watched folding videos online and went to work. It wasn't until January 29th that I actually read through and finished the book. Verdict on the book now? Love. Here's what happened:

Category 1 - Clothing: 2 weeks (Mostly the weekends)

"Oh, I'll do clothes on Saturday and all the rest (shoes/boots, coats, socks, scarves, handbags) on Sunday. Well, that didn't quite work out.

Saturday and Sunday came and went and clothes were mostly complete. Oh, except for shoes/boots, socks, coats, scarves, bags. I felt like a failure but then realized this was the real deal, and if I was going to do through the process it may take time. I figured, okay, and since I'm going all in I'd better read the book. Eye opener. The book tied all the pieces together and I was able to see the how everything works and filled in pieces I was missing. Very helpful. And it was a short read, maybe 3 hours if I recall correctly.

And the results:

Clothes...Got rid of 30% or more of my clothes. Even though I'd just regular de-cluttered 6 months ago! 2 days.

Socks...Got rid of about 80% of my tights (left myself 3) and 50% of my socks. Game changer. 3 hours.

Belts: 3 went away, kept 1 just in case and it sparks joy.

Handbags: Kept all of them, will revisit later, it's too hard to know what to do with them but I have less than a dozen. For now I've stored them inside one another as described in the book. "1 bag inside 1 bag, handles showing".

Shoes: Oh boy.
Donated 6 pair of shoes.
Tossed 3 that had seen better days.
All the rest fit, I think I have 22 pair of shoes/boots now.

Category 2, Books: No time flat.

Books. That was easy, I only had 15 books, culled it to 10.

Category 3, Paper: 2 days.

Easy, got rid of all my magazines, almost all my clippings, letters written to me by friends I no longer had in my life, etc. Got rid of about 80% of my paper. I did end up keeping 90% of my empty notebooks, I will definitely use them.

Category 4: Komono. Forever. Harrowing. 

I'm so glad Marie Kondo says the system only needs to be done once, because Komono was a nightmare. If you're not familiar, Komono is every single thing in your home that is not clothes, paper, books or sentimental. OMG. It was a nightmare. Stuff everywhere for weeks. But in the end I got rid of tons of stuff that never went during other declutter efforts. I got rid of all but a few pots/pans, 20% of my plateware/stemware/cups, etc. Out went 4 picture frames i wasn't using, 3 mirrors, 2 large blankets I wasn't using, 30% of my bedding, and even furniture pieces! Got rid of a storage piece I no longer needed because I got rid of so much stuff, got rid of a desk that I really liked but didn't use, etc, etc. Things were flying out of the house, I was doing weekly trips to Goodwill, animal adoption centers, fabric recycling stations, used book store, etc.

Funnily enough it was the under the kitchen sink that almost drove me to tears. It literally took me 8 hours that spanned 2 days for 1 cabinet under the sink that holds all my cleaning supplies. I thought I was going to lose it. But I didn't. I finished. Now all my cleansers and kitchen cleaning stuff has a nice home and everything has a place. Before? lol. bad.

I got to a weird place where there were things out that didn't fit places or I wasn't sure about whether they should stay or go, so with 90-95% of Komono done I moved onto category 5.

Category 5: Sentimental. Easy.

I barely had any so that was easy! I'm left with 2 photo albums and some campaign swag from 2 elections.

Then one morning I was continuing my process, putting away things here and there that were still out and about, I put away an item then turned around to find another thing to put away...what? Where is the stuff to put away? I looked around the bedroom...nothing, must be in the living area, nothing, kitchen? OMG, I'm done, I've put every single item I own out the door or in a perfectly accessible place that fits nicely and looks nice. I was done. I was stunned, almost frozen in place for a few seconds as I tried to process what was happening. What was happening was my place could not be any tidier than it was at that moment. Not one thing out of place and everything looked fabulous.

The whole things took a total of 5-7 weekends (small NYC apartment) as I didn't have weekday time except for a little bit here and there. But my life is so much better after Konmari. Upcoming: How have things been since.