Marie Kondo is a TV personality best known for her decluttering methods. Tidying up is a great way to practice minimalism and create a calmer living space. The secret to Kondo’s method is basically just getting rid of everything you don’t love or need. And there’s nothing more minimalistic than that.
Of course, the problem becomes figuring out how to choose what to get rid of and what to keep. Most people probably aren’t ready to give away everything and live like monks, and many people are prepared to rationalize why they should keep everything. That’s where Kondo’s method comes into play. Here’s a quick rundown of the Marie Kondo method:
• Work in categories. Usually, tidiers tend to think of organizing spatially and work from location to location arranging things. Kondo’s method takes an inventory-style approach and centers the process on what kind of thing an item is and deals with where it goes later.
• Keep things that "spark joy." The simplest way to declutter is to simply remove the clutter. And that’s what this step is about. There’s no good reason to keep items that take up space and may even cause stress if they don’t do anything for you. Kondo suggests you look at each of your possessions and consider what it really does for you. She says you shouldn’t keep anything that doesn’t "spark joy" (create a fluttery feeling) — unless, of course, it truly is a necessity or useful item.
• Organize. After cutting down your collections of clothes, books and other miscellaneous items, it’s time to find a place for everything. It’s best to have a space for each of your categories and not separate them out too much.
• Do everything in one cleaning session. Kondo recommends the Japanese mentality of ikki ni, which basically means "just do it". It’s best to just get it done and over with. After the big job, keeping everything tidy is easy.
Minimalist design can create a calm, organized ambience in your apartment. The simple, uncluttered look can help you feel more organized and zen throughout the day. It’s also great to use in an assisted living apartment because minimalist decor focuses on using space efficiently. Here are a few ways you can use minimalism in your decorating.
• Choose decor with simple, clean lines. Straight, hard edges make everything look controlled and balanced. Consider using straight picture frames and simple furniture to make the room look orderly and mathematical.
• Use a limited and neutral color scheme. The minimalist aesthetic is about being reserved, so you’ll probably want to go with mostly neutral colors with only one bright accent color. Lots of cream and subtle earth tones create a calming, natural vibe. Greyscale looks more modern and intellectual.
• Create white space. The most important decoration in minimalism is nothing. Making room for emptiness creates a feeling of spaciousness and openness and brings more attention to the pieces you do have. Focus on only the most important decorations and save the rest for a different day. The emptiness and silence of blank walls and open floors will be louder and brighter than any decoration.
• Make sure everything goes together. Unity is the quintessential rule for design. Everything should feel like it’s part of one whole. This turns a room into art and inspires harmony and stillness. That’s not to say eclectic decorating doesn’t have it’s place; minimalism just tends to lean towards balance.
Having tangible books is pretty great. The feel and smell of books add a whole dimension to the reading experience. But the price for that extra dimension is space. Books end up taking up a lot of space. By switching to an e-reader, you can free up space in your apartment. You can also access thousands of books and pay much less for them than if you bought a physical copy in many cases.
Clutter doesn’t just apply to stacks of paper on a desk. Your computer and mobile devices can also fall prey to cluttering. Your desktop can have tons of folders and icons, causing you to lose files and images. Your email can be full of spam and junk, so you never know if someone sent you something.
Handling clutter on devices is another problem minimalism can solve. Cutting down on how much you keep on your desktop and how many emails you let go to your inbox can greatly improve your experience using those tools. The desktop is an easy fix. Just trash anything you don’t need there and put everything that goes together in one folder. For your email, set filters to keep unimportant mail out of your inbox.