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Kehler Counseling Blog

NETFLIX - Marie Kondo's "Tidying Up" Series

What a way to start off a NEW year!  
 After dealing with the reality of 2018 - seeing Netflix created a series featuring Marie Kondo and her 'life changing' method of 'tidying up' - I was excited.  
I will start with the fact that (if you didn't read any of my Blog entries of my 2015 experience of going through her process) I already completed her entire process - every single category in my home was covered.   Believe me, I was a skeptic - in the beginning of her book she claims that using her system will result in long term change - and you will NOT go back to your old habits.   Too often many run out buy all new storage containers and start with a room or place - garage/ attic/closet and months later - it looks the same as when they started.  
 I know I did that.  
Although this Netflix series isn't as entertaining as "Queer Eye" - (I'm a big fan of their show too!)  this ones speaks more to the emotional - mental - mindset of the 'process' and the life changing thinking that sticks after you're finished. 

Over time this is what I have learned about going through the Kondo 'process' 3 years later:
  • It must be done by you alone - but shared space items should be done as a couple or family.  The individual items and choices are so personal - NO ONE can do it FOR you.  That is where many go wrong - they want 'someone else' to do it for them - and the anxiety then skyrockets because -THEY are controlling the outcome - not you.   
  • It takes time - don't rush the process - the shows are within 30-60 days - I took 5 months.  I spent dedicated time on weekends - 4-6 hours max.  The process is exhausting yet energizing.  It is physical and mental.  But the visual changing is significant.  That is part of why its motivating - you SEE how 'less' is more.   
  • Once everything - and I mean everything - has an assigned place - basket - drawer- closet - shelf - all you do is put it back in the SAME assigned place.  Each category has ONE assigned place.  This magic is what really reduces stress!!  You have ONLY ONE PLACE to look!!   This can't be emphasized enough.  This is what reduces stress, anxiety and perfect for those with attention-deficits.   You simply put it back in its assigned place.  If you add or buy more - the new items go into that place as well.  
  • The ONE place is more effective and efficient than many realize - Americans often don't assign a specific place and buy extras to locate all over the house/garage/attic to be 'convenient' - yet they forget where they are - then buy MORE!    Even if you have to travel to another location in the house from where you 'need' the item - having only ONE place to go is refreshingly simple.   A flight of stairs ONE TIME is a lot easier than wandering aimlessly throughout - checking 90 places to 'find' something.   
  • The process is NOT about 'getting rid of everything' and that is what increases anxiety in other methods!   It is about surrounding yourself - both out in the open and in every storage space -including drawers, baskets, shelves with a visual 'bling' that gives you JOY.   That is why the way she folds clothing is so inspiring - suddenly when you open drawers you see a neat and orderly -colorful - 'experience' of your clothing.  Not a pile of mess that you have to 'dig' for!!     If you have to 'dig' for anything once you're done - you need to try again.   

  • Once the process is completed and you have honed in your skill of determining what really gives you JOY - you start re-evaluating EVERYTHING!   I mean it.   You begin editing and prioritizing everything you do!   With the 'system' in place you really do have TIME to do what you enjoy!   For me it has been reading and getting my weight under control so I could enjoy fashion again!   It also means I keep my bird-feeders stocked and I'm planning on a 'deck' redo in the summer so I can really enjoy sunsets out my back door.  

  • Thanking items for their 'service' or usefulness is more important than it sounds.  I found this incredibly freeing with sentimental clothing - it can also help with other sentimental - memory filled items.  You don't have to store them to have the memory!       
  • As you go through the process you will have some fun moments, sad moments and be reminded of your previous joys.    Check pockets, purses and hiding spots - its where all those things you're 'missing' or looking for are!   Reading glasses made me laugh!   They were in pockets of several items.  Check purses.  You will also get jolted with sweet memories - that are in your mind - not in the article.  

I'm going to stop here.   I will continue to encourage anyone to attempt this 'process' - I would also encourage checking into Youtube - as there have been a lot of people of all makes and models who also completed it and videoed the entire thing.   

You will feel remarkably different as you sift through, plow through and review through the experience.  As she states in her series - you hone in your real JOY as you go through it - don't expect to really 'feel' it initially - but once you hit that category or complete one - you will really KNOW your JOY - and it may be completely UNIQUE to you - that is why it is so life changing - is how personal it is - and 'be true to yourself' becomes very easy!
Find your JOY!

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