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Marie Kondo & Making it Happen

If you’ve been on Netflix in the past 6 months, I’m sure you’ve at least seen advertisements for the new show “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.”

“Tidying Up with Marie Kondo” is a show starring Kondo, a Japanese tidying expert and bestselling author of the book “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.”

Kondo’s main goal is to help people of all ages and all family backgrounds declutter their homes, which, in turn, declutters their lives. 

I think the reason why Kondo’s show has created such a wave of supporters is that it shows us the before, during and after of untidy homes and the lives of the people who live in them. We see them change their lives just by cleaning their homes, which in turn makes us want to do the same.

In the show, Kondo helps her clients through all of the clutter clearing steps while inspiring them to choose joy. 

Kondo calls these steps the KonMari Method. 

What makes this tidying method any different from the others?

The KonMari Method encourages tidying by category rather than location.

Kondo’s method begins with clothes, moves on to books and papers, continues on to miscellaneous items, and finishes with sentimental keepsakes.

Kondo’s main way of discovering if you no longer need certain items in your home is by making you ask yourself, “Does this item spark joy?”

For any belongings that no longer “spark joy”, Kondo advises you to discard them, but not before thanking the item for its time spent with you and the temporary joy that it brought.

The additional step of thanking an item before discarding it sounds a little odd to some people, but Kondo believes that this helps one stay mindful and introspective during the tidying process.

Marie Kondo has sparked a movement in the tidying world, especially those with a tendency to lead towards perfectionism. 

Professional organizers and tidying enthusiasts have started to share their pictures of perfectly tidied closets and pantries that would make any OCD sufferers take a sigh of relief.  These photos are posted all over Instagram with any hashtag related to Kondo’s name: i.e. #mariekondo #konmari #konmarimethod

Although eager to tear everything apart after just one chapter of her book, one episode of her show, or after stalking pictures on social media of what following Kondo’s method can create, few have actually taken the plunge.

My question is why?

Here are some of my ideas:

Too much junk 

Studies show that 6% of the United States (19 million people) are compulsive hoarders. 

If not hoarders, Americans in general just have a lot of stuff.

According to The Wall Street Journal, we spend an average of 1.2 trillion annually on nonessential goods.

This makes tidying a daunting task and scares people off.

Too little time

The process of tidying your whole house is a full-time job in itself, let alone having to work a 9-5. Most Americans work an average of 40 hours per week, and would never come home from working all day to immediately jumping right into tidying a torn apart room. 

It’s just not ideal.


The overall percentage of Americans on disability sits around 12.8%. Having a disability can hinder you from being able to do active things such as tidying. Without help, the action of tidying is not plausible.


People that are lazy don’t have any excuse why they can’t tidy their house, they would just rather not put the work in. 

Most people have a bad habit of starting a task, but never seem to finish it. 

This habit creates a vicious cycle of never-ending piles of junk that seem to stay there forever.

Fear of letting go 

Some items we own hold sentimental value.

Because of this, we hold on to every last physical memory not even remembering that they’re there. This is a fear we have of tidying, but it is also just another reason why we should.

The main takeaway I get from all of this is that if you want something bad enough, you’ll do whatever it takes to get it. 

If that means making sacrifices, you make them. 

Start small, take one step at a time, make it happen. 

I appreciate Marie Kondo sharing her techniques with the world. 

The combination of her book and Netflix show has lit a fire under us all and made us want to better ourselves and our homes with the KonMari method. 

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