Master KonMari consultant Gemma Quinn (pictured) said you can apply Marie Kondo’s principles of tidying to all aspects of your life
Marie Kondo’s principles of tidying isn’t just about decluttering your house.
According to Master KonMari consultant Gemma Quinn, the same method can be applied to your life – including your relationship, health, work and home.
‘It’s about tidying up in a way that enables you to live your ideal life and be surrounded by the things that spark joy,’ Gemma told Daily Mail Australia.
Instead of discarding objects, the Melbourne-based professional tidier – who became the first Australian to train under the Japanese organising expert – said you need to imagine the kind of life you want to live, and whether each aspect brings you joy.
‘The method works for all parts of your life as it teaches you the skills you need to understand yourself, understand what sparks joy and to let go of items and feelings with gratitude,’ she said.
‘We all have a relationship with our belongings and they are connected to all aspects of our life, so when tidying them, it’s natural to start thinking and examining other areas of your life: your work, health, and relationships.’
The Melbourne professional tidier – who trained under Marie Kondo (pictured together) – said you need to imagine the kind of life you want to live, and whether each aspect brings you joy
Gemma said everyone has a relationship with their ‘belongings and they are connected to all aspects of our life, so when tidying them, it’s natural to start thinking and examining other areas of your life: your work, health, and relationships’
Gemma shares her top five tips to KonMari your life
1. Commit and embrace your tidying journey
2. Be honest with yourself, it’s the key
3. Identify and acknowledge your feelings and emotions
4. When joy checking, don’t think about anything else except “Does it spark joy?”
5. Cherish and celebrate all that brings you joy no matter how big, small, rational or irrational
She said the first step of the method is to visualise your ideal lifestyle.
‘In doing this, you are understanding and clarifying why you want to tidy by envisioning your best life; it’s the start of making a change in your life,’ she said.
Gemma said the tool helps support and guide people to ‘develop their own understanding of what makes them happy and the life they want to live’.
‘This forms a basis for people to understand if their belongings (or any other aspect of their life) bring them joy, enabling them to decide what to keep and what to let go of,’ she said.
She explained the ‘life-changing magic’ of the method happens during a ‘joy check’.
‘A “joy check” is when you hold an item and ask yourself, “Does this spark joy?” When you joy check an item, you can take a moment to reflect and understand why an item may or may not spark joy and how it does or doesn’t enable you to live your ideal life,’ Gemma said.
‘I believe this is where the magic happens, as it allows people to grow their understanding of themselves in wonderful, truthful and surprising ways.
‘The key to a joy check is being honest with yourself. It seems somewhat simple but in practice can be quite hard and confronting. Joy checks lead to people discovering and unleashing a world of hidden joy.’
The Master KonMari Consultant said the tidying method isn’t about overhauling your home but it’s about having your life in order
The KonMari Method inspires people to fold all their clothes upright so its neat and tidy
After working with countless clients, Gemma said many have discovered a ‘world of hidden joys’ just from holding a piece of their possession.
‘The “joy” could be finding a book and realising you’ve been burying your true passion. In some of my own clients, its led to a change of career,’ she said.
‘Holding your favourite jeans may spark joy but also regret and shame, because you don’t fit into them, leading you to reflect on your health, prompting a change in diet and exercise routine.
‘When someone tidies their exercise wear, it can help them evaluate why they wanted to get fit in the first place and find an exercise program that fits their ideal lifestyle.’
How to put your life in order using the KonMari method
For those who want to get their life in order, I suggest the following:
UNDERSTAND: Why do you want to tidy up, what is motivating you? What are you hoping to gain?
COMMIT: Make a commitment to yourselves. Tidying using the KonMari Method and completing your own tidying marathon is a once off special event, as it changes you
PLAN: Make a plan. Set aside three hour blocks to tidy and put them in your diary. Create a list of all of your subcategories because it makes your tidying marathon tangible and manageable
TIP: When working on a category, start by tidying the easiest subcategory and work towards the hardest.
ENJOY: Tidying with the KonMari method is a joy-filled event, enjoy the journey and the unique and delightful ways your belongings bring you joy
According to Master KonMari consultant, the same method can be applied to your life – including your relationship, health, work and home
What are the five things you don’t know about the KonMari method?
1. The power of using boxes and storing items vertically
2. The importance of organising in a way which allows for ease of putting items away
3. Connect each belonging to your ideal life i.e. Cleaning products – ask yourself, in an ideal world what cleaning products would be used in your home?
4. It can be applied to absolutely anything
5. Life-changing magic really does happen when the KonMari Method is applied correctly
Gemma said there are many items people stumble across that don’t ‘spark joy’.
‘Some of these items evoke a range of uncomfortable and at times confronting emotions,’ she explained.
‘It’s these moments which I find the most powerful, as when people understand their relationship to these items, go on to thank the item for their service and what the item has taught them, they’re not just letting go of an item, they’re letting go of the negative and detrimental emotions which have been holding them back and are liberated.’
Gemma said using the KonMari method is important because it allows individuals to develop and progress in their own way.
‘It’s a powerful tool which allows people to create positive sustainable changes in their life based on their own personal values, their ideal life and what sparks joy,’ she said.
‘As the method is based on each individual embracing their own and unique ideal life and joy, it doesn’t impose anyone else’s thoughts, values or expectations on those using it and therefore allows them to develop and progress in a way which supports their own life and heart.’
What are the common mistakes people make when using the KonMari method?
Gemma Quinn (left) became the first Australian to train under global sensation Marie Kondo
1. Only doing one category: Commit, don’t just tidy clothing, each and every belonging you own should be joy checked and given a home. It’s a once in a lifetime activity, it resets your life
2. Not using enough boxes for storage: Put boxes inside other boxes and use small boxes – think of it as a game Tetris. Be specific when giving items home
3. Not being honest with themselves about if a item truly sparks joy: The same applies to all other aspects of life, food, careers, activities and relationships
4. Not connecting their belongings enough with their ideal life: It’s helpful to ask, does this item enable me to live my ideal and best life?
5. Not incorporating sentimental items into everyday life enough: Incorporating sentimental items into everyday life it can bring joy in delightful subtle ways