6 Basics Of KonMari
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Health and Wellness

6 Basics Of KonMari

Living organized and with joy in every possession.

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6 Basics Of KonMari
Photo by Jake Campbell on Unsplash

This past semester, I wrote a piece on my experience going minimalist in college. Since then, I have been researching more and have discovered a variety of types of minimalism stretching many across cultures. From the simplistic rules of L’art de la Simplicité to the gentle intensity of Swedish death cleaning, there is a path for every person looking to become minimalistic. The one that stuck out the most to me was the KonMari method.

Perhaps the most well known of the minimalistic methods, KonMari is actually the nickname of Marie Kondo, the Japanese author of the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. In that book, she explains her methods for cleaning up her space and the magic of choosing items to buy and to keep based not just on their innate value, but on the joy they bring to the possessor. Her method is more than just bringing down the number of things you have cluttered into your space, it's about learning about what you really need in life.

There are six "rules" to the method; however, they are fluid and can be up to interpretation. They are more like guideposts to direct the experience of KonMari than anything else.

Rule 1: Commit to tidying up

Before any progress can be made, you have to really decide to put in the work. It isn't something you can go into halfheartedly; it's a change of habits, and it'll take more than regular cleaning.

Rule 2: Imagine your ideal lifestyle

What kind of life do you want to live? Knowing what you want is one of the most important aspects of deciding what brings joy to your life, and determining a lifestyle goal puts you on to certain aesthetics.

Rule 3: Finish discarding first

Don't attempt to just reorganize and store away items. Disposing of items you don't need is the only way to get tidy and stay tidy, so be ready to part with some things.

Rule 4: Tidy by category, not by location

The KonMari method recommends setting out everything you own, then sorting through each thing by where it works. Rather than starting somewhere and having stacks of misplaced items, organization can start from a blank canvas.

Rule 5: Follow the right order

The order is clothes, books, papers, miscellaneous items and then finally sentimental items.

Rule 6: Ask yourself: "Does this spark joy?"


The biggest tenant of KonMari is the idea of joy. Not joy in having things, but the joy that comes from the item. It's not always practical; sometimes, you might find yourself holding on to old t-shirts and favorite pens just because they make you happy. But you have to consider joy in the context of what lifestyle you want, and you have to be discerning about what joy really is. Remember, you're deciding what to keep, not what to get rid of.

If your typical organizing methods just aren't working anymore, KonMari might be the method for you. Dedicate yourself to cleaning up and I promise, the rest of your life falls into order.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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