For the second time in, like, a couple of months, a book has totally changed my life. I’m not at all dramatic.
(The first book was The Fringe Hours, which is absolutely amazing and a must-read, FYI.)
It all started when I saw an intriguing Instagram post from Emily over at Imperfect. My house was a wreck (seriously) and I felt completely overwhelmed with STUFF, so it was like a sign …
View this post on Instagram
Less than a month ago, I went through my closet and got rid of tons in advance of our garage sale. I thought I was pretty ruthless. Then I watched a today segment on the #KonMarimethod, bought the book and have spent the last two days purging and folding. Nothing is safe. #sparkjoy
A post shared by Emily McKevitt (@emilymckevitt) on
I needed to find out more abotu this #KonMarimethod, whatever the heck it was!
It’s actually The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, a “best-selling guide to decluttering your home” from a Japanese cleaning consultant named Marie Kondo.
I grabbed the Kobo (not Kondo) giftcard that’s been in my wallet since Christmas, ran for the iPad, and clickety-click downloaded the book two nights ago.
The very first night, I read the introduction and the first chapter, which is on clothing. Then I darted upstairs to the bedroom (Darling Husband was working), and started attacking my dresser and the closet.
IT. WAS. EPIC.
View this post on Instagram
I started reading #mariekondo's "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" last night after seeing @emilymckevitt's post and it is SO GOOD. Finished my dresser and am mostly done the closet — and I have a seriously massive "toss" pile. #KonMarie
A post shared by HEATHER LAURA CLARKE (@hfxheather) on
I tackled more of it again last night, and I can already see why the word “life-changing” is in the title of the book. Honestly.
There is something HEAVY about having too much stuff. It weighs you down in life. Even though I’m very organized, and I really do have a place for everything, ORGANIZING is not ENOUGH. If you have too much crap in your house, it doesn’t matter if it’s labelled or neatly in bins. It’s still too much!
Even though I regularly “purge” clothing, I had been doing it wrong my entire life. I had been asking those typical questions of “Do I wear this?” or “Have I worn this in the last two years?” I was keeping things just because they were expensive, or because they were gifts, or because I *might* someday need it.
Marie Kondo’s way is to pick up each item, look at it, and ask yourself one question: Does this spark joy?
Yes, I know it sounds hokey, but it is REMARKABLE. Suddenly I was tossing shirts I’d worn recently, without the guilt, because I didn’t like the way they looked, fit, or felt.
I was tossing items I’d been holding onto for years, without the guilt, because they had served a purpose and now their purpose was done.
I was tossing tiny pairs shorts that I know probably won’t fit me again, because seeing them depressed me — and really, I think they were too short/young for me anyway.
GONE! GONE! GONE! I was giddy as the pile grew.
Tonight will be the third night of my little project. My clothes are done, but I still need to tackle Darling Husband’s clothes and the kids’ clothes. That’s trickier, because I need to do Darling Husband’s purge with him, and the kids need to be far, far away before I attack their rooms.
So I think I will read the next chapter tonight, which is about books, and move onto those for now. I’m a huge book-collector and books have a lot of sentimental value to me, but I also know I have too many. They aren’t ALL meaningful, and I have to let some go.
Is anyone else obsessed with this book? Or is it just me, wild-eyed with a bunch of clear garbage bags?
I’m Heather Laura Clarke. I’m writer living in beautiful Nova Scotia, I have a 11-year-old son and a nine-year-old daughter, I married my high school sweetheart, and this is the story of my handmade life.
I have depression and anxiety, and I fight like hell every day to keep it from taking over my life. Making things isn’t just a hobby — it’s part of what keeps me alive.
Whether I’m writing novels, decorating a room, busting out my power tools to build furniture, getting muddy in the pottery studio, sewing clothes for my kids, or cross-stitching a swear word, I’m all about using my creativity to craft a life I love.
I’ve been writing this blog since 2009, so if you dig deep into the archives, you’ll meet a bright-eyed 25-year-old newlywed who was basically obsessed with having kids, buying a cozy house, and supporting herself full-time as a writer. (Spoiler alert: she got exactly what she wanted.)
© Heather Laura Clarke and Heather’s Handmade Life, 2009-2021. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Heather Laura Clarke and Heather’s Handmade Life with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.