KonMari method of decluttering

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KonMari method of decluttering

Postby Tesseracts » Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:36 pm

Marie Condo and her KonMari method of cleaning is big right now. What do you think of it? Do you have issues with clutter? I’m going to use her method to declutter my house and document my progress here.

Usually reality TV shows strike me as exploitative, stupid, and/or boring. So I was not expecting to get so involved in the new Netflix show Tidying Up With Marie Condo. I’ve always struggled with cleaning and my own clutter makes me anxious and unhappy. What makes her method so appealing is her focus on the emotional aspects of tidying. Lots of people avoid it because it’s stressful, like I do. Marie Condo addresses this problem by physically holding each object and asking if it sparks joy. If it doesn’t, she thanks it for its service and throws it out or donates it. She developed this method before she noticed herself buying too much stuff to fill the emotional void left by efforts to declutter and throw out other stuff. I think her process is very smart. A lot of the people on the show clearly have deeper emotional issues that prevent them from managing their spaces well, and it seems like focusing on what makes you happy is a good way to address that.

Sadly I’ve seen a ton of backlash against Marie Condo on social media, mainly from people who are extremely threatened by the idea of owning less books. I will write a post about that later because excessive typing on my phone does not bring me joy.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby Anglerphobe » Sun Jan 27, 2019 11:08 pm

Accruing crap is seemingly an inevitable problem with sedentary life - each human seems to generate a certain volume of it through the ordinary course of life. I would think the nomadic people of the world are pretty grateful that they can just leave their old shit behind at a camp when they move on.
I try to follow as closely as possible the advice of William Morris:

“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful”

If you can be faithful to it, you can ensure that the useless shit rarely stays long enough to build up in the first place - in a way that is apparently quite similar to the KonMari method. I'm ok at doing this, but I do type this from a room which contains, among other things, several empty bottles I don't want to throw out because I will likely never see another of their kind, a pot of gravel I agreed to accept from a crazy guy and would feel guilty about abandoning, and probably hundreds of metres of various leads and wires which have some potential use but no practical application to anything I am ever likely to do. As you see, my problem appears to be that I am really willing to stretch the definitions of both a sentimental and pragmatic attachment to something.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby Absentia » Sun Jan 27, 2019 11:46 pm

I haven't watched Marie Kondo's show. If I have anything to say about it, I never will, because the day I find watching somebody else clean their house entertaining is probably the day I decide I'm out of interesting things to do and kill myself. But I do support the idea that people generally collect too much clutter.

Ever since I had to go through the nightmare of cleaning out my childhood bedroom that had accumulated 30 years worth of crap, I've made a conscious effort to avoid collecting clutter. Initially because I didn't know when I would be moving again, but then I realized that I don't actually care about decorations and knickknacks anyway and it's easier to keep my apartment in a manageable state without them. I understand that not everybody wants to live with completely bare walls and floors, but again: people collect too much.

My mother lives hand to mouth because she can't work, but she pays for a storage unit every month because she has too many chairs from too many dead relatives and there's no more room in her house. When I cleaned out my father's attic, there was stuff that was tacky and busted when he put it up there in 1986; he complained a lot about wanting to move after the divorce, but the biggest stumbling block was that it was too much effort for him to throw things away.

I found the process of looking at every thing I owned and asking whether I actually had a reason to keep it to be overwhelming at first but ultimately very therapeutic. And it certainly seems like a more practical path to me than my parents' "I might want this someday" attitude. It's worth having to pay for a new chair sometimes. (My mom could probably have bought a nice new living room set with what she's paid for that storage shed in the last ten years.)
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby ghijkmnop » Mon Jan 28, 2019 2:32 am

I have clutter, but it's functional. I have in the past, and will in the future get rid of it when I'm finished. The fact that people will allow strangers on TV to dictate how they lead their lives incenses me beyond belief.

We have one bookcase/shelf, and it's full of antique books (many well over 100 years old)-- she can eat a bag of dicks if she thinks we're gonna throw away history, regardless of whether we read them. As far as modern books are concerned-- have you ever read fairy tales from books before 1970? They are considerably different and gruesome--and important to history. Even ignoring the admonishment to throw things away in today's society, disposing of books allows for edited, sanitized versions to take their place. And that is a VERY BAD thing.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby Malfeasinator » Mon Jan 28, 2019 4:01 am

I'll preface this by saying I don't know what her method is and also that I'm never going to watch the show.

That said, I have no problems getting rid of shit. The house fire took away most of whatever was sentimental to me, anyway.

I think, honestly, people need to convert as much old media to digital formats -- scan and so on -- and keep off-site backups, if they really want to have their family history still around. It takes work but if the unthinkable happens, you'll be glad you didn't lose those memories forever.

If you have a box of mementos, take pictures of them. Upload the pics to the cloud. Even if you lose the items themselves, you'll still have something to remind you that those things existed. Maybe scan your great-great-great-great grandfather's Civil War Diary, or that book of recipes written in your great-great-grandmother's handwriting.

Back things up, y'all. That's all I'm saying.

Everything physical that I really give a shit about could probably fit in my car, with room for a couple passengers.

I like to read, I like books, but a lot of what I own is DIY or how-to stuff, the rest I give away or loan out when I'm done and never ask for it back. Sharing is caring.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby JamishT » Mon Jan 28, 2019 6:06 am

I too have not seen the show, but I've heard/read about it nearly everywhere. I realized that with a bunch of people getting rid of stuff, the local thrift stores should be stocking some sweet stuff, and that theory was backed up by NPR several days later. I've only browsed some stores two times so far, and I haven't seen as much good stuff as I expected.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby IamNotCreepy » Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:12 pm

I am very much a minimalist, so I only tend to buy things if I absolutely need or want it. I don't really accumulate much clutter, except by leaving things out instead of putting them away. I prefer that because I am lazy and would prefer to have something immediately accessible on the counter or a table than to go digging through drawers or closets to find stuff.

My wife, on the other hand, is always buying useless shit we don't need but she thinks will be useful (they're usually not). It drives me crazy, but I've given up trying to change it. I just let her deal with issues that arise from her terrible purchases.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby ghijkmnop » Mon Jan 28, 2019 8:59 pm

JamishT wrote:I too have not seen the show, but I've heard/read about it nearly everywhere. I realized that with a bunch of people getting rid of stuff, the local thrift stores should be stocking some sweet stuff, and that theory was backed up by NPR several days later. I've only browsed some stores two times so far, and I haven't seen as much good stuff as I expected.


I would check the homes of the Thrift Store owners and staff.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby AboveGL » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:41 pm

I've not seen the show, but I've definitely applied the method, and still do from time to time. I'll immediately donate something if it feels like a burden, but I often find I feel elation about objects at different levels depending on my mood, and sometimes the object itself won't evoke strong feelings, but seeing it on display with others might. Sometimes my happiness towards an object or diorama dampens over time, but the time and energy spent putting it together still means enough to me I won't get rid of it. I like keeping my place decorated with posters and figures relevant to my interests because it makes it feel more like a home; my home.

That said (though it helps I live in a big flat), my spaces are generally not as cluttered as they used to be and the only messy areas are where I've piled old and unwanted possessions I'm waiting to photograph and list on eBay. Everything else is tidy and functional, whether practically or emotionally.

It's a different story with my mum, and her tendency to hoard makes me glad to be out of my parents' place.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby Windy » Fri Feb 01, 2019 2:04 pm

What's the method for decluttering digital objects?
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby cmsellers » Fri Feb 01, 2019 5:28 pm

Windy wrote:What's the method for decluttering digital objects?

A strong magnet.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby BROWNRECLUSE » Sat Feb 02, 2019 4:39 pm

cmsellers wrote:
Windy wrote:What's the method for decluttering digital objects?

A strong magnet.


Or uninstalling Steam.
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby cmsellers » Sat Feb 02, 2019 8:39 pm

But Steam's updates bring me so much joy!
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Re: KonMari method of decluttering

Postby sunglasses » Tue Feb 05, 2019 6:24 pm

I keep liquor bottles because they look neat.

Totally not a horder. I have no dead cats under boxes. Yet.

No, for real, I go thru the house every year or so and throw out a lot of shit. Or take it up to the attic. Out of sight, out of mind. But most of my clutter is stuff that I want to see so...eh.
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