Declutter 2019: No Kon Do?


I held them, folded them and futzed with them; now it was time to let them go.

“Thank you all for being here,” I said magnanimously, like the hostess at a celebratory cocktail reception, to the assortment of sweaters, scarves and slacks strewn across the bed.

It figures that I’d try to take a shortcut, veering off Marie Kondo’s Tidying Up path to save a little time by thanking the group rather than individual items.

Yes, I understand the need to declutter. But I’m honestly having trouble figuring out what “sparks joy,” and I’m not making light of it. Sometimes you have to have a black turtleneck. What’s joyful about that?

I needed advice that sunny, sprightly Kondo isn’t here to offer. Luckily, there is plenty online.

The blog clutterfreenow from Maryland-based Mindful Decluttering & Organizing offers lots of tips and a practical approach: “If something sparks pride or nostalgia or even anger, those emotions are as valid as joy, and can provide important guidance."

A mid-January post on the MarketWatch website asks other personal organizers for their advice for people who simply don’t relate to Kondo’s KonMari method.

One tip worth noting: “Instead of asking yourself if an item sparks joy, ask if it’s something you’d buy again, or if it’s easily replaceable.”

To me, that makes sense.

I’ll no doubt continue to watch the “Tidying Up” Netflix series as inspiration to maintain momentum in the decluttering marathon.

I might even kneel on the floor someday and thank my home, as Kondo does in her reorganizing process.

“Hang in there, old girl,” I’ll tell it. “You’re doing a great job holding all this junk 'til I can get to it.”