Clutter comes from the postponed decision of what to do with an item. When we gather all like items together to sort, we are deciding to decide! We are taking the time to confront our indecisiveness and with Marie Kondo’s inspiration we shift this process from a negative one to a joyful one. Some items will be kept and some will be discarded.
As Marie Kondo explains in her book, The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, while tidying she kept searching for reasons to let an item go. She spent years cleaning and decluttering her room and still it felt cluttered. Then she had the realization that by focusing on only what to get rid of, she was focusing on unhappiness. Instead, by keeping those items she loved, she shifted her tidying focus and inspired millions. So her criterion for keeping an item is that it “sparks joy.”
When you decide to tidy, enjoy the focus on the happiness that the item brings. It’s very easy to keep items we love. In fact, this is the easiest part. However, what if the item doesn’t spark joy? Here is where you can be brave! Get comfortable with the thought of letting it go. At this point you have decided to decide on each item’s role in your life. It’s almost like the item is interviewing for a position in your life. Why keep something that doesn’t support your goals or ideals? Why keep an old gift that you don’t feel pretty wearing? Why keep something that sits hidden in the corner of your closet? Be brave. Let it go.
Next post will go into more detail on how to let it go, for now, just become comfortable with discarding.