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Organise your life

Why not declutter your life more by using the KonMari Method? Charis Le Riche shows us how.

Living with diabetes is challenging enough as it is, which is why it’s so important to take stock of your life, simplify where you can and get organised! Clutter in our home can not only be a distraction, it can also cause restlessness and stress.

Developed by Japanese organising consultant and author, Marie Kondo, the KonMari Method aims to help you declutter your life, so that you can make space for what’s really important: living a healthy, better life. Though it may sound simple, it can be a really challenging exercise. But stick to it! The results are amazing.

Step 1: Tidy all at once

You need to commit to tidying up all at once. Marie says that it’s important that you declutter all in one go, as opposed to cleaning over a period of time. Decluttering over a period of time never works, as you’ll start accumulating things again and you’ll end up where you began. By decluttering all in one go, you’ll find that you’re more motivated about the challenge at hand.

Step 2: Letting go

Secondly, according to Marie, you need to visualise your life without the clutter. Don’t look at only the material things – how a room will look once organised – but try to imagine what living a clutter-free life will mean for you.

Step 3: Does it bring you joy?

It’s not about just throwing things away. Marie says that you should only keep the items that truly bring you happiness and discard the rest. Hold the item in both of your hands and ask yourself: “does this spark joy?” It is important to hold each item – if the answer is yes, then keep it. If the answer is no or you hesitate, then throw it away or donate it.

Step 4: Organise by items, not location

Instead of decluttering room by room, Marie tells us to declutter by items. So, for example, when you’re doing clothes, you need to get all your clothes from all the various places you store them, place them in one pile, and then sort them out from there. Start with tops, then do jerseys, then pants etc etc.

Step 5: Stick to an order

Marie tells us that there is an order that needs to be followed when organising: start with your clothes, then books, papers, komono (miscellaneous), and finally sentimental. This way you build up organising muscles for the really hard stuff – sentimental things.

Step 6: Finish, before putting away

Don’t put anything away until you have discarded all you can from that category – discard first and then put it away. A good tip: check out the KonMari Method of folding – your closets will never look the same.

Step 7: Recycle and donate

You’ll be amazed at the sheer number of things that you are willing to get rid of, and the feeling of being surrounded by only things that really make you happy. If you’ve been holding on to things because you think you might wear them again or might be able to use them one day, it’s time to let go. That day will never come. You’ll feel liberated and exuberant once you have either recycled or donated your unused and unwanted possessions. In South Africa there are so many people who need anything we don’t that it’s an act of charity to tidy up and clear out.

Final thoughts:

It’s difficult not to accumulate clutter: we tend to hold on to things that made us feel a certain way when we bought them, or remind us of a certain period in our lives. Clutter can also make it difficult for us to let go of those memories and move on with our lives. Our minds can’t relax.

Once you make the decision to get rid of the things in your life that no longer bring you joy, it brings a change to other parts of your life. By living a clutter-free life, we free up time for the things that are really important in life – our family and friends – which makes us feel more balanced and peaceful.

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Sweet Life is a registered NPO/PBO (220-984) with a single goal: to improve diabetes in South Africa. We are funded by sponsorships and donations from aligned companies and organisations who believe in our work. We only share information that we believe benefits our community. While some of this information is linked to specific brands, it is not an official endorsement of that brand. We believe in empowering people with diabetes to make the best decisions they can, to live a healthy, happy life with diabetes.