The Marie Kondo effect – inspiring us to declutter our homes

With the popular Netflix series, Tidying up with Marie Kondo, on our screens, we can’t help but feel inspired to sort out our stuff and declutter our homes.

In a series of inspiring home makeovers, world-renowned tidying expert, Marie Kondo, helps clients clear out their clutter, giving them tips on how to organise their possessions, as well as showing them how to feel happier about getting rid of unwanted items.

Taking your house from cluttered and overstuffed can be totally overwhelming, and we can all fall victim to the obvious procrastination that can come from this.

With Marie Kondo’s help, however, we can follow a few simple steps to make this feel a bit more manageable. She has developed six rules of tidying that could help all of us:


Commit yourself to tidying up

Decluttering does require time and effort but, according to Marie Kondo, once you have made up your mind, all you need to do is apply the right method.


Imagine your ideal lifestyle

By imagining your ‘ideal lifestyle’ you can clarify why it is you want to tidy and the way you’d like to live once you’ve finished. The tidying, Marie says, then thus represents a huge milestone.


Finish discarding first

Instead of just storing everything in another cupboard (yep, that’s me), we need to discard unwanted items. When things are put away, the home will look neat, but if storage units are filled with unnecessary items, we’re not decluttering at all, we’re just hiding stuff!


Tidy by category, not by location

Marie suggests we sort out all our clothes, for example, from the entire house at one time. This will mean we can see the sheer volume of that ‘category’ and thus see exactly what we want to keep as well as what no longer serves a purpose.


Follow the right order

The ‘right’ order is clothes, books, papers, miscellaneous and then sentimental items. Many of us know of a time where we tried to start tidying and then ran into a stack of old photos, meanwhile losing hours of cleanup time. Marie says that clothes are an ideal place to start practising the skill of tidying. Photos and other items, that you are likely to have some nostalgia attached to, are those items that need to wait until you’ve perfected the ‘art’.


Ask yourself if it sparks joy

Marie asks us to remember that we are not choosing what items to discard, but rather the items we want to keep. She says we should keep only those items that bring us ‘joy’.


I am definitely feeling inspired to clear out all those cupboards and storage units that I know are full to the brim. Hopefully you are too. Happy decluttering!

Hannah Drinkwater