Marie Kondo – Because of you

traffic light control box art
Geraniums

Dear Marie,

My husband, (aka MOTH), is not happy.

Because of you, our house will never be the same.

Because of you, my house is tidier.

But the MOTH – The ‘Man About the House’ – is frustrated!

If you haven’t heard of Marie Kondo, it may be that you don’t have a TV set or haven’t stepped inside a bookshop, of late. Marie Kondo, a Japanese lady, advocates the Kon-Mari method of Organization. Through her TV show and book titled, “The Life-changing Magic of Tidying,” Marie has brought a new wave of organizational and tidying techniques to the world.

Marie’s particular brand of household magic involves a range of vertical storage solutions, lots of folding strategies, and sorting one’s possessions into certain categories. The central tenet behind her de-cluttering techniques is to hold each item in turn, to one’s heart, whilst asking yourself the question, “Does this item spark joy in me? ” If the answer is yes, the item is kept; if the answer is no – the item is gratefully thanked for its job in one’s life, and then promptly ditched.

Gympie shopping

I began to read Marie’s book and then this happened –

The process of sorting and folding begins

Like a thrift shop’s sorting table, this was a scene from my house shortly after I started to read Marie’s book.

Around about that time my husband started to “lose” things.

I was reading Marie’s book and he was uttering a variety of indignant lamentations.

“Where is that hard drive I left on the desk,” he demanded, as I perused Chapter 3. Midway through reading Chapter 5, he asked me, “..Those batteries I had beside the TV, what’s happened to them?” By the closing chapter of Marie’s book, the crescendo of laments had reached a point of desperation, “Just where ARE my shoes?” he cried.

(They’d been moved to their new ‘spot,’ of course, at the bottom of his wardrobe).

I have to say Marie: – Because of you, papers are now never left to pile up on desks; shoes are regularly moved from under beds and chairs, and miscellaneous items are no longer stored, “to hand”, as a visual reminder.

But the MOTH cannot find anything because it is packed away neatly in cupboards and drawers, in places he never looks! So, he is definitely not happy with Marie.

bird-talk-yell

Marie is also to blame for the careful rolling and folding of every piece of clothing I own. She’s responsible for the discarding of lots of my unused “stuff.” It is also, though, her fault for my having increased capacity in storage cupboards; a strong ability to locate those less frequently used items faster, and even to blame for me being capable of selecting coordinates in a blink of the eye.

marimekko shop helsinki

For Marie is right.

A lot of that “stuff,” we accumulate over time, sits at the back of storage cupboards, and will most likely never be worn, or used.

Then there’s that feeling of guilt I no longer have for buying extra clothes, or purchasing things I won’t always use. Prior to reading Marie’s book, I used to admonish my daughter for throwing out so many new-ish clothes and goods, in so short a time after their purchase, thinking her a wee bit wasteful.

Up-cycling a T shirt into a plaited belt

I am was a big up-cycling and recycling advocate, who could always find another use for any item. To throw out clothes that might be re-fashioned was akin to sacrilege.

But Marie believes that tidying and de-cluttering is a way of taking stock and finding out what we really do like. And Marie’s advice is spot on when she stated many of those so called ‘rescued and re-fashioned items would simply accumulate in storage, only to be thrown out years later, without ever being up-cycled.

Well, I did recycle a few items from my stash, but probably much less than half, I have to admit.

Where am I

Where does this feeling of wanting to buy and keep material goods come from?

After spending a lifetime tidying and honing tidying into a fully fledged international business, Marie has an explanation for this behaviour. Marie says:-

We amass material things for the same reason we eat – to satisfy a craving. She insists that through tidying and de-cluttering, people come to know contentment.

A new way forward for my things

Marie’s method is a way of respecting and organizing our possessions, caring for them and appreciating what we have and what we choose to keep. By employing the Kon-Mari method, Marie frees us from the burden of accumulating more and more ‘stuff,’ and in this way, tidying becomes a a life-changing experience.

And what happens to the MOTH’s shoes now that I have finished the book?

They are still placed neatly under the chair, each evening.

I guess Marie should address MOTHS in her next book.

Something to Ponder About


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2019 – How Does it Look So Far?

I am not really someone who makes New Year resolutions as I prefer a little more structure around the aims and goals, however a little planning in February, can’t go astray, can it?

Lake
Boreen point lakeside beach

I found this little memo on the net and thought it was a prompt to think about general and personal goal setting for the year ahead. Even though we are two months in, I still feel  that I am just getting started with 2019.

Here are the ‘resolutions’ and my answers.

A bad habit that I am going to break – reduce or stop overreacting to personal bad news with knee-jerk judgements.

A new skill I would like to learn – I love languages and learning to speak a little Polish and Old German will help me in reading historical records, as well as be welcome stimulation of the linguistic neurons in my grey matter!

A good deed that I am going to do – assisting the Smith family and helping to re-distribute food via Qantas volunteer program. I like to support community projects and endeavours.

A book that I would like to read – I would love to reduce some of the books currently on my TBR shelf – one that comes to mind is Anna Funder’s, ‘All that I Am.’

A new food that I want to try – I’d be willing to try anything fermented or pickled – the probiotics contained within are so good for you.

A place that I would like to visit –  I would like to say something remote like the Faroe Islands, but as I am busy at home this year, there will be no long holidays, unless I count a potential, but not scheduled visit, to the Mornington peninsula, in Victoria or getting involved in research at the Genealogical Society headquarters.

I am going to be better at being – non-judgmental and maintaining calm ….. ohm……

Are you someone who sets goals or makes resolutions?

Do you reassess them regularly? Are they a useful prompt, or temporary navel-gazing?

Join in with the Seven resolutions and tag me in so I can read up on your inspiration for 2019.