Kawai loves to learn new things and explore ways just to make life taste and feel a little better.
If you want to experience some instant gratification using a healthier option (instead of stuffing your face with fast food or binge watching TV), try getting up now and start doing some tidying around the house.
There is always something to do, and it does not have be a massive project. Start small and look for something simple that perhaps have been bugging you for months, or just a small project (like sorting out your jewellery or shoes) to make your environment more pleasant.
If you are a little lost at what to do, or short of creative and smart ideas on how to tidy up your space, check out some quick tips from Maria Kondo below.
Tip #1 - Appreciation
Marie's approach seems to be directing us to cultivate a sense of responsibility and appreciation for the things around us. In Episode 1 of the Netflix series, she teaches the couple to first thank their House for protecting them and for providing a place for the family.
I guess the simple fact is if we learn to love and be grateful for what we have, we will be more willing to take better care of it (e.g. love and acknowledge the house and you will feel its less of a chore to keep it tidy because it is something you should treasure).
Marie's Video Tips: Using Boxes For Small Items
Tip #2 - Use Boxes
This is one of my favorite tip because I am already doing this before watching this show. Boxes are a simple, yet amazing solution to keep things in order especially when they are small or are miscellaneous items. I have a lot of miscellaneous items (e. g. extra bolts after assembling an IKEA product, unused multi plug, an extra battery, broken parts of items in the house that I plan to fix later on... the list goes on).
Boxes can help to keep almost any item organised, from clothes, tools, jewellery and food. Its best to keep things in clear transparent boxes so you can see exactly what is stored inside.
Never start the habit of keeping things in plastic bags or trash bags because it can easily accumulate and be forgotten. It's much easier to have a system and take the effort to sort out whatever comes your way as soon as you can.
Tip #3 - Be Able To See Everything
Another one of her simple tips is to organise items such that you can see everything. For example, when you stack clothes in the drawers or containers in the kitchen cupboard, be sure that all items are visible so you know exactly what you have.
Instead of putting the folded clothes or containers on top of each other, you can organised them vertically or slanted so you can see and easily have access to each item. You can watch Marie's folding technique below to see how to ensure that clothes can vertically stand on its own when folded.
One additional thing I do at home is to label what is in the box - this sounds like such a obvious thing to do, but really, we usually don't do it, and it's amazing how useful it is when you are trying to search for things later on.
Marie's Video Tips: Basic Clothes Folding Techniques
Tip #4 - Folding
The concept of folding things for storage is key to Marie Kondo's method of maintaining a tidy house. You can fold things like e.g. clothes, linens in several ways depending on the storage capacity that you have. In episode 3, Marie showed that things such as bedsheet can be folded in half (for linen closet storage), in thirds and storing upright (for deep drawer storage), or by rolling it into a long narrow bundle (for small wardrobe storage). The main thing is to remember to keep everything visible so that you know exactly what you have.
Tip #5 - Sorting Out Clothes
This is an important tip, especially for us ladies who find our wardrobes piled with clothes after years of shopping and finding it hard to say goodbye to any clothes we buy. I have clothes in my wardrobe that I have not worn for years and yet at the back of my mind, I always tell myself that there will be an occasion that I would need it and I would regret it if I throw or give it away right now.
Marie's important tip when it comes to sorting out clothing is to take out all your clothes and lay it into one single pile, as only this method will give you a real sense of how much clothes you have.
It can be daunting if you end up with a huge pile of things so Marie's suggestion is to initiate the process by starting with something easy, meaning things that you obviously don't want or want.
In the wise words of Marie Kondo, only keep clothings that still 'spark joy' to you.
This also applies to many other things that you want to start cleaning up - such as books or letters. Put them in a pile so you know exactly what you have.
Tip #6 - Everyone To Be Responsible For Their Own Belongings
Marie teaches that everyone should be responsible for their own belongings. For many families, the mom is usually the one who becomes responsible for all the things around the house (e.g. after having to tidy up after the kids for so long).
It can be overwhelming for moms to have their kids always asking where their belongings are. So it is important to cultivate a sense of responsibility of your own things in the household. That also applies to the spouse too.
Tip #7 - Get the Kids Involved in A Fun Way
Marie mentioned that she will fold clothes with her kids before bedtime so the family can bond while getting some chores done. This is a genius concept because as a parent I constantly struggle with trying to spend more time with my babies and the need to complete my household chores on time.
Of course, it's not as easy as it sounds, but children are quite impressionable so I think parents should start as early as practicable, in cultivating the habit for them to help out around the house. I think adding an element of fun to the chores helps children to be more willing to get involved.
I remember that my sister and I had to help wash the dishes at a very young age. In order to make it a more enjoyable process, we used to imagine that we were competing in a dish washing competition and my sister or I would also be the commentator, detailing the progress of the competition and eventually announcing the final winner.
Marie's Video Tips: Cleaning With Kids
Tip #8 Bag In Bag Method
Bags can be bulky and hard to store neatly. So Marie's simple tip is to store a bag in a bag of similar size to easily reduce the space needed. Just make sure that the handles of all bags are visible so you would be able to know where your items are.
Tip #9 Storing Sentimentals
When storing sentimental items, try to find a nice box that will make you feel happy. When placing books or cards etc. Store them upright so you can see what items you have. For other smaller items like key chains or jewellery, store them in a smaller box before putting it in the bigger sentimental box.
When sorting photos, you can sort either by year or events.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Kawai
Kawai (author) from Singapore on October 30, 2020:
Thanks Liz for the kind words.. Yes I have also been tidying up just to feel more productive at home.. And it's been quite therapeutic =)
Liz Westwood from UK on October 30, 2020:
At a time when we are all tending to spend more time in the home, this is a very appropriate article. I have read it with great interest and really appreciate the way that you have condensed down the main tips from the series.