MY KonMari method dammit
This Marie Kondo lady is sure getting a lot of press these days, eh? What’s infuriating about this is that I “Marie Kondo” the shit out of my house on a daily basis and I seriously kick ass at it. Why didn’t I think to write books and make a ton of money? Where’s my TV show? I have lots of things I enjoy doing and a few things I’m almost good at, but none come close to my passion and serious kick-ass ness of organizing.
It’s actually a crutch. I hate clutter with a passion and making sure it doesn’t exist in my house is a full-time job. If you’re visiting my house and have a cup of water, there’s a chance it will disappear while you’re mid-sip because I will have an overwhelming urge to take it from your hands, clean it and put it away where it belongs in my clean cabinet with cups lined up symmetrically by size. THIS is why it’s a bit of a crutch. Aaaaaaall my control issues are bottled up and come crapping out in the organizing of my home.
Organizing is second nature to me, which is why I’m perplexed why some people can’t do it. Just sit in a room, pull out everything on a shelf and throw away the shit you haven’t looked at in a year. It’s not rocket science. But I actually DO have some organizing “methods” and best practices I could share with you, such as my theory of sock rotation, but I won’t bore you. So what we WILL talk about is Marie Kondo’s methods and why I’m not sure it would work for me.
Full disclosure – I’ve never actually seen her show or read her books. I know, I’m not judgmental at all, for someone who really knows nothing about her. But I took two whole minutes to google some of her methods. Here’s what I found out.
1) Apparently, the crux of her method is to hold an item and see if it sparks joy in your body. If it does, it gets to stay. If not, then it goes. Sooooo, this is where actually seeing the show before judging it might be helpful. Because I’m not sure I get it. Because I don’t know the last time my toothbrush sparked joy in me but I can’t throw it out or my teeth would eventually fall out. I also might throw out my husband and kids.
2) Another KonMari method point is to “tidy all at once”. Umm, do you want me to fall over and die? You want me to purge my American home filled with all sorts of American crap, including no less than 345 child birthday party goodie bag items that are truly filled with crap in ONE SITTING? Every January I do a house purge and it takes me three weeks, because I split it up into parts so it doesn’t feel overwhelming. Doing it all at once is a surefire way to kill me.
3) She also says to “tidy by category and not location”. OK Well this one is just fully opposite of what I do. Soooo, let’s say I tidy by category. How about books, for example. I have three books on my office desk, a bunch of books in my family room, some in the playroom, some in my kids’ bedrooms, ten books I found under the sofa and a few in my box of tampons because you know, I have kids. So I’m supposed to walk around the house and find all the books and bring them together? THEN decide what brings me joy in those books? THEN put them all back? That seems insane. So yeah, I just purge by room. I walk into my family room, and walk around it, step by step, checking out every drawer, shelf, nook, etc., and decide what stays and what goes. Then I mark it off my big list of rooms that I wrote down (this is key to the Frase Method),and move onto the next room. OR drink a gin & tonic and do the next room in a few hours because hey, reward. I just purged my family room.
4) Apparently, Marie says to rely on FEELINGS and not to bring rational thought into it. What in the fuck? OK well MARIE, first of all, I FEEL like I don’t want to spend my weekend purging. I also FEEL like I will do it because I rationally know that it’s necessary. My house is full of kid crap and stupid sippy cups that I need to get rid of, but my FEELINGS tell me to keep that sippy cup because it’s nostalgic even though it hasn’t been used in eight years and has green shit growing on the side of it. I think the crux of the Jen Frase method is to NOT use feelings but use rational thought instead. Do you think those hoarders on that show use rational thought? Hell no. Because nobody rational would say it’s ok to let your bathroom get SO filled with garbage that you can’t reach the toilet so you instead shit into adult diapers and throw it on your kitchen floor. When purging you HAVE to use rational thought. Example:
Hoarder following Marie Kondo’s Method:
Hoarder: Wow, I have to poo but it seems as if my toilet is currently unreachable. But I feel like I don’t want to purge that bathroom because it holds all sorts of sentimental items like my mummified cat, some newspapers and paint cans. I think instead, I feel like I just want to crap into this Depends and toss it on the kitchen floor because hey that’s convenient. It just feels like what I want to do. It gives me joy to shit without moving, and I get to keep my paint cans and dead cat.
Hoarder following Jen Frase’s Method:
Hoarder: Wow, I have to poo but it seems as if my toilet is currently unreachable. Actually, now that I look at my bathroom, it is highly disgusting and no rational human would ever choose to live in this squalor. I better clean this ASAP with a very strong disinfectant. THEN I will poop into the toilet like a high-functioning human being.
Which makes more sense? Hmm.
OK I had my fun. In reality, I totally get the idea of keeping things that bring you joy and eliminating crap that doesn’t add to your life. And I love that Kondo has actual, concrete ways to teach people how to organize. If I was an organizing teacher, my class would consist of one of two things: 1) I’m better at this than you are. Get out of your house and I’ll organize it for you. OR 2) Just take it room by room, shelf-by-shelf and get rid of anything you haven’t used in awhile. See? Not that helpful. I guess that would be a short book. But it WOULD be a decent TV show of me just yelling at people and why their house is disorganized. I’d be the Gordon Ramsay of house organizing.