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Podcast 47: The Heroics of Tidiness

Posted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 1:11 am
by reinhard
I managed to squeeze out one more episode in 2015 -- not bad by my recent (very low) standard.

It's part review of Marie Kondo's Tidiness book, part re-consideration of the role of discrete, decisive actions in the realm of self-improvement.

Posted: Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:31 pm
by NoelFigart
I finally noticed this and checked out the podcast. I've been fairly itching to see what you thought of it, as certainly her "heroic effort" mentality is very contrary to general "Everyday Systems" advocated methods.

Full disclosure:

I did declutter my four bedroom home via the Konmari method. My husband was enthusiastically on board with it. I am an empty nester, and I did not even open my children's bedroom doors. Their rooms are still in moderate levels of appalling they will have to deal with when we eventually downsize.

I read the whole book before I started and did almost everything according to her recommendations. I thought about why I wanted to tidy, what I wanted to get out of it, and all that before I started. I tidied by category instead of by location except in one instance -- the kitchen.

When I try a suggested system, I do try it as fully as possible, as something the ways parts of the system interact and are useful are not immediately obvious. I did my best with this, even to some goofy things like emptying my purse every day and filling it back up again in the morning.

It did work well. My room at this very moment is quite tidy, indeed! That being said, it wasn't last night. I hadn't put away my clothes and gifts from my Christmas journey to the ancestral estate. (Joke: it's a house in Suburban VA, not an estate...)


Putting everything away took me about ten minutes. I had a place for everything, the clean clothes I had left over were already properly folded to go in my drawers, and I already had a place for the suitcase.

I do let things pile up more than possibly Ms. Kondo does. I do not necessarily put things away the second I use them (did for a little bit), but I never let it sit out for more than a day. Things are tidy before I go to bed, and I wake up to a tidy house every morning.

I think clutter is a little like our perception of S-days. Once you get used to the moderation (or tidiness) the excessiveness of clutter (or S events) becomes blisteringly obvious.

I wrote a LOT of blog posts about my Konmari adventure.

Posted: Fri Jan 01, 2016 10:49 am
Great - a new podcast - feels like a nice Xmas present! Thank you :)
I'm going to make myself a warm mug of coffee to wrap my cold hands around - it's grim here today (rain, cold, dark, windy - yukky). I have been following Fly Lady for several years - another system based on establishing habits - which works well for me.

(pause for listening)

Yup - it was interesting - I can't see that it's much different from any other de-cluttering or space-clearing advice though. I appreciate that there is possibly more in the book, because, as you said, it is different from the American approach. As far as I can tell then, it's about the gathering together of one type of thing - then the thanking and letting go - then the arranging differently so that you can see everything.

Anyway - thank you for reminding me about decluttering. I spent NYE sorting out papers relating to my work that had accumulated in the house - and put a big bundle in the recycling.

Posted: Fri Jan 01, 2016 3:08 pm
by NoelFigart
RAWCOOKIE wrote: Yup - it was interesting - I can't see that it's much different from any other de-cluttering or space-clearing advice though.
It's really rather unique. I did FlyLady for years before I went whole hawg with Konmari.

I did a post on FlyLady v. Konmari back last summer.

Posted: Wed Jan 06, 2016 4:43 pm
by reinhard
Thanks for the thoughtful responses, Noel, Rawcookie!

I enjoyed reading your comparison of flylady vs. Kondo, Noel.

From: ... v-flylady/
Understand clearly why you are decluttering

I love this. It’s something that really gets missed. The assumption is that everyone wants a neat house so of course you’re going to spend all this time to have a showcase home.
Funny, I don't even remember the part about her recommending that you start with the "why?" of tidying. I guess as a still very full nester, that just seemed oppressively obvious. :-)


Posted: Wed Dec 14, 2016 9:25 pm
by kaalii
great podcast... i also found it fascinating and amusing how kondo is encouraging us to treat objects as alive... but i do find great spiritual wisdom in it as it encourages imbuing our mind with respect and gratitude..."twisting" our minds to find the positive in every little thing we own and even those we are about to discard... and, ultimately, by repetition making it a habit... 8)

and great blog, noel... it keeps me inspired... especially because im now in the round 1 of decluttering... multiple times 15min. decluttering, room by room, clockwise... flylady style... the alarm clock going off every 15min. reminds me that im allowed to stop... because im so afraid to become overwhelmed and abandon the project or suffer too much during the process... a way to be gentle to myself...
but i started with clothes, as i had a deadline for local fleemarket possibility to sell them... and give them away to people i know, in one fell, well-coordinated swoop... so it was in a way konmari approach... books and papers i also did in the similar to konmari way basically because i do keep all my books in one place... papers in another...

but i plan to properly "konmari" my home in the second round, before and while packing to move in march... and then again, probably during/after the move... in the new home...
im interested in the "spark joy" mindset practice on a category by category of stuff... mind training before and after the stress of the move... and a kind of a protection against the stress of it, hopefully...

i love that you compare the 2 methods im inspired by and i can say that i have similar view and experience of them so far...

Posted: Sat Jan 05, 2019 5:32 am
by harmonxjim33