A recent article in the New York Times features Marie Kondo, a Japanese organizing and decluttering professional whose ideas have caught my attention and that of many of my faithful readers.
The main points of her approach make good sense to me:
- Keep only things that “spark joy” (the things you love, as I’ve written about here)
- Don’t buy new organizational products as it’s likely you already have everything you need (as I’ve also written about).
And I particularly love the nice Feng Shui changes in the “Before & After” photos she includes in her book:
But I do have to take exception to a few of her other ideas, especially that paper organization is best achieved by throwing all your papers away.
My issue is not so much that this is a radical idea; in fact I’m usually in favor of out-of-the-ordinary organizing solutions.
Rather, it’s important to appreciate the difference between things you NEED and things that are hanging around serving no particular purpose in your life.
For example here in the U.S. at least, you definitely need to keep your tax records and receipts.
Whereas business reports you’ve kept from three jobs ago may remind you of past successes, but you’re unlikely to need them any longer.
So use the motivation of Kondo’s new approach to fire yourself up to get organized, as the article’s reporter certainly did.
But don’t toss the baby out with the bath water! Keep the papers that can’t be replaced and toss the rest.
Your space and your peace of mind will thank you.
(photo from the NYTimes)