The first time I read the book ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying’ many years ago, it felt like a revelation. The idea that you didn’t ‘need’ everything you had in your possession and that in actuality, a lot of it is weighing you down both physically and mentally.
As soon as I finished it, I somehow managed to stick to the five steps and philosophy prescribed by its author, Marie Kondo and before long I had nearly nine garbage bags full of old clothes, books and various other items ready for donation, on-gifting or recycling.
Marie Kondo has become something of a celebrity ever since her Netflix series debuted this month, with a new wave of people discovering her fascinating approach to how we treat our belongings and what they mean to us.
Some of Marie’s methods seem strange to western audiences like thanking your home with a silent moment, or waking books up with a little tap.
But while they might seem foreign to others, it’s all rooted in traditional Japanese Shinto culture and I think there’s a lot we could learn from these methods.
Essentially what Marie is teaching us isn’t just that ‘we have too much stuff’ though I’m sure that is true for most of us, it’s really about surrounding yourself with things that bring you happiness and have stories attached to them.
It’s less about a lesson in ‘what am I getting rid of?’, rather ‘what am I keeping?’ Holding your favourite book in your hands, smelling it, thinking about places you’ve read it and in your mind, thanking it for everything it has done for you.
It’s about respect for the objects in our life.
Often many hands have had a part in creating those objects and it’s a good thing to be able to take a moment to consider this.
Especially in the last couple of decades, fast fashion has found a new friend in fast decor.
Furniture and home decor trends change so rapidly now that by the time your Kmart package arrives, it could already be out of style … but maybe that also makes it cool? It’s hard to keep track.
In episode 3 of the Mudgee Podcast [available now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Google] I spoke with Ali Broinowski form Perfectly Sorted about why the tidying craze has just broken into the mainstream and what it tells us about our habits as a society.
I’d love to hear from anyone reading this that has tried the Konmari method in their life and how it’s changed things and if you’ve managed to stick with it.
Now excuse while I go and thank some books.