De-cluttering is the new sex… well, not quite, but it is certainly gaining popularity! In recent years, perhaps in direct response to people’s everyday lives becoming ever busier and more chaotic, the trend of minimalism has become more and more popular. Some proponents of this have advocated getting rid of almost all of their possessions and opting instead for a life of simplicity and reduced stress. The theory being the less stuff you have, the less you have to worry about. Whilst many of us may love the idea of living in a simpler, less cluttered environment, serious minimalism is a lifestyle which is probably a bit too extreme for most!
Does it spark joy?
Enter Marie Kondo and the KonMarie method of tidying and organising. Less extreme than simply getting rid of everything, the KonMarie method asks you to look at your stuff in terms of its ability to spark joy. It is doesn’t, the idea is, that you get rid of it! The method also looks at storage methods and how to use space most efficiently to put your stuff away – and for it to stay beautifully organised.
The method has become so popular that there is even a TV show where Marie Kondo puts her method into action in real peoples houses to help them get control of the clutter! Many charity shops are reporting record donations in the wake of this TV show, known as the Marie Kondo Effect.
Start by categorising
The idea is simple enough but involves sorting through your stuff by category rather than by room and not moving on to the next category until one is complete. If an object does not 'spark joy' for you, it should be discarded. Once you have gone through everything and decided what is in the keep pile, it needs to be found a home (preferably with other, similar items). Claims about never needing to tidy up again do sound a little far-fetched but the theory is sound! The categories are: Clothes, Books, Paper, Komono (which is pretty much everything else including kitchen items, office, bedding, towels, decorative items, shed/garage contents and kids stuff/toys) and lastly, sentimental items. They are to be worked on in that order and one category must be completed before you move onto the next.
Discard or store?
Many people would probably love to live in a more organised space but also have trouble letting items go permanently. This is where self storage can come to the rescue. Allowing you to live in a less cluttered home without the permanence of having to part with items for good. It may be that you like the idea of keeping things you no longer need for the next generation or you are thinking ahead to family members setting up their own homes in the future. Storing things away from your home allows you to feel the benefits of de-cluttering without the need to part with items for good.
If you are planning to de-clutter with a view to storing items away, following the KonMarie method makes it quite simple to know where to start and means that you work methodically, eventually perhaps getting round the whole house... Remember that you will need plenty of boxes and crates for self storage and the more organised you can be about packing things away the better. Think about storing similar items together and make sure you label things well so you know what is what. See Packing Tips for Self Storage for more information on packing for storage.
Make an Inventory
Creating an inventory of what you have stored is a good way of keeping track, as well as allowing you an easy way of working out what the value of your stored items is for insurance purposes. It is recommended that you insure your stored items for their full replacement cost, so, having a list to work from is useful and means that you don't under-estimate the value of your items. (See this blog post for more about the perils of under insurance). Making sure you insure your stored items keeps them protected against loss or damage whilst they are stored is essential - Visit our website for more information or to get a competitive insurance quote.