Monday, June 6, 2016
The Magic of Tidying Up
After reading this little book I have to say that she does not say a lot that has not been said before. I think people enjoy reading about organization more than they enjoy doing it. This book does have a definite Asian perspective. I can say this because my son lived in China for four years and I have a Korean Daughter in Law! They do look at things differently than we westerners. If you live in one of the Asian Countries, you do not have big homes. I think most Asians would think all Americans live in mansions comparatively. The Asians see beauty in simplicity. Westerners think Bigger is Better and you cannot have too much stuff. And saying that, I have to admit that I have been intrigued by the tiny house movement that is popular right now. The younger generation would rather spend money on experiences than housing. I really enjoy watching Tiny House on HGTV. It is amazing how much storage can be built into 300 square feet.
Ms Kondo's whole premise is this...if it does not bring you joy, Toss It. She gives you permission to donate it but you cannot box up your mementos and send them to Mama's House. I have found that I do tend to wear the same clothes over and over. They are clothes that are comfortable and make me feel good. So why do I have other things in my closet that seldom see the light of day. In recent years I have worked on that! I cannot go along with her idea of folding all your clothes I hang my things up because I do not like wrinkles. And I have room to hang my things up so I am going to do that. She is not a fan of books either. She would gasp at the library Marvin and I have upstairs. But I do read books over and we planned this room specifically for this purpose. Finally on page 126 she said this...Keep what you can properly handle. I think that is the key to a well kept home. Some can handle more than others. I think the biggest problem in organization for most people is putting things away. Once you are finished using something, put it away. How many of us have an area in our home that is a dumping ground for things we are going to put away later. She also recommends dealing with paper as it comes into your home. I do this every day when the mail comes. I have a simple file system in my kitchen where I keep things that need dealing with and the rest goes in the trash can! Marvin is always amazed at the amount of garbage we have in our big container that goes to the street. I tell him that we have a tidy house because I get rid of things that we do not need or want! And Ms Kondo says the hardest things to get rid of are mementos...Truly special memories do not go away if you discard the items associated with them. I guess this is my biggest challenge as I tend to be sentimental. She touched on hoarding also...she related that many people think they get security from hoarding but it often causes more anxiety due to the space all the stuff takes up in your home. I have always said that a cluttered home makes for a cluttered mind. The author related that many people sit down to do a certain task but they find themselves tidying instead of studying etc. Our mind wants a serene place to do its best work.
And I took issue with her idea of treating inanimate objects as if they are animate. She says we should thank our clothes, shoes etc at the end of the day before putting them away. That is definitely an Eastern viewpoint. I have a dear friend who related that when she was in high school she had a closet full of polo shirts of all colors that she wore with jeans to school. She rotated the colors because she was afraid of hurting the shirts feelings!!
As a Christian I thank God for His blessings as I clean my home. Every Tuesday I wash the sheets on my bed and when I climb under the covers that night, I truly thank God for Clean Sheets. Marvin laughs at me but he waits every Tuesday to hear me say this.:)
So if you are curious, take a look at this book on Tidying it does have some helpful hints and tidying is always a good thing.