DOING this book has really changed my life. However, there are a few things I’ve learned along the way.
First of all, it is NOT about throwing things away. It’s about contemplating every item that you own and understanding what brings you JOY. If you do not do this whole-heartedly, really questioning and understanding what makes your life a litt
le more joyful, you will not succeed in changing.
2. You can’t make someone do it. Case in point: I tried to have my own mother DO the book. She said she read it… This is before trying the book:
After a lot of stressful pleading, she allowed me to help get her STARTED. The first step was of course, CLOTHES. It is super important follow directions, meaning put all clothing in ONE PLACE:
Then, came the waterworks, the yelling, the freaking out. My mother said she read the book, so this should not have been a surprise. But alas, it was a HUGE shocker for her. In the process of going through her items of clothing, she kept trying to put things away back into the closets and drawers. She kept freaking out about the mess in the living room. And then sometimes, she would cry like she was in some Korean drama. This showed me how powerful the method is.
Why is it important to put all of the same category of items into 1 place? So you can SEE everything you have. You aren’t compartmentalizing the mess behind closed doors.
I got through almost all of her clothes with her (not shoes), and it was seriously daunting. I kept having to repeat myself, argue with her, etc. She was not capable of really questioning each item of clothing and was a whirlwind of different emotions. She told me to leave several times, and said she would DO IT herself. I did leave her alone many times, only to find that she was trying to put her things away in random closets. She claimed that she finished several times, only to go through with me, and produce dozens more bags of clothing to donate/trash,etc.
Eventually, I helped her with Kondo folding, and putting things away in her closets.. light to dark, up towards the right, vertical folding, etc. This also took a lot of arguing.
my mom: “WHat?! this will take forever! I will never be able to do this!”
me: This will be the only time you do ALL of your clothes at once, so it seems harder than it is! And you are not taking this seriously, so you’re keeping too much too”
my mom: “What, i LOVE this (as she picks up the 5th of the SAME t-shirt. One of which she is currently wearing and has been wearing for the past 3 days)”
me: ANd is that how you treat the things you love? You stuff them at the bottom of a drawer or closet and forget about them?…..
Then, I had to leave. I was able to help for about 5 days before realizing that my mom could NOT be helped-at least not by ME. It was disheartening knowing that we did so much, but it would all go back to an unjoyful mess.
I firmly believe that you HAVE to do the steps fully and in order if you want to truly change. You absolutely cannot convince someone to do it, and you need to have a sort of mindset. You also need the ability to self reflect and be patient. Holy moly. Never again. Sure, her closets and drawers are much tidier now, but it will only be a matter of time before they go back to the way they were. Not only that, she then did what Kondo Marie says NOT to do: she randomly went through drawers/closets and reorganized her clutter (much of which was moved to the basement).
Mothers and their daughters.. what can I say? I suppose I was the crazy one for even attempting to do this with her.
**UPDATE 1/15 I just watched Ali Wong’s comedy special on netflix again, and realized that she warned me about doing this ! I should have listened .. hilarious**