Marie Kondo is a wizard in the organization game (and a fashionable one, to boot)! Her KonMari method has helped people declutter their homes and, unwittingly, their lives through discarding those items that no longer make you feel happy. See what Marie Kondo teaches us about separation and finding that spark of joy.
Acknowledge the Clutter in Your Life, and Let It Go
Marie Kondo is an adorable woman, wife, and mom who is determined to help everyone around the world organize their homes. Her KonMari method shows people how to re-establish a relationship with items that “spark joy”, and how to let go of items that no longer serve them in a respectable way. Her method is very alchemical in practice, and some of her followers have found that they can translate the KonMari method into their personal lives as well.
Truthfully, I binged her show on Netflix not too long ago. I found myself unable to pull away from the screen. After I watched one episode, I put her first lesson into practice: clothes!
I actually got giddy about folding my clothes into little tents. I found myself gaping when I saw her do it in episode 1, yelling at myself, “WHY AM I NOT DOING THIS?!”
After I went through my family’s clothes and reorganized our drawers, I felt lighter. Freer. Happier.
I was hooked!
“Who IS this magical woman?!”
“Where did she get that skirt?”
“How did she see the potential in THAT dump?!”
The more I watched, or read, or put her lessons into practice, I realized WHY I like her methods so much.
She is a MASTER at the third operation of alchemy: separation!
What I Learned from Marie Kondo Is…
It’s inevitable that you collect items you find joy in. Clothes, trinkets, photographs, books, bookcases of Star Wars collectibles (i.e. my wonderful husband) all tend to find a place in your home, and never leave. At one point, these items made you happy for different reasons.
Perhaps you wanted to look cooler.
Maybe you were gifted something from a friend’s travels to the sea.
You want to remember what it was like being a kid in the theater, watching Jedi Rebels battling it out with the Dark Side to restore balance to the Universe.
As years go on, you will hold on to these things, and collect new things that make you happy.
Until one day you realize that the books are piling up, the clothes are everywhere, you’ve lost count of the places you’ve stored away family photos.
And perhaps, these things that used to make you happy just end up taking space in a dark. Forgotten corner of your home – or yourself.
Separation Reveals What Matters to You Most
I want you to imagine that your home and your body are the same. Imagine all of these miscellaneous things collecting dust, tipped over, thrown everywhere without respect. These things make you feel stressed, anxious, and just not comfortable in your own skin.
Just as you collect clothes, trinkets, and Star Wars collectibles that eventually do not serve your happiness anymore, you also collect beliefs, attitudes, memories, resentments, and feelings like guilt and worry. If you do not let these things go, they just sit inside of you collecting dust, making you feel stressed and anxious anytime you revisit them.
It doesn’t serve your highest good to contain these feelings and beliefs about yourself forever.
Facing Your Inner Clutter
I would like to make a movement to change the term, “face your inner demons” to “face your inner clutter.” Because your feelings are not demonic, you’re not a demon, and these beliefs served you a purpose at one point.
Think about this for a moment: why do you hold on to bad feelings?
Did someone manipulate you, and now you struggle to trust new people?
Have you ever experienced a failure (in business or relationships) which caused you to stop trying?
Are you afraid of making changes to your life, even though you know you need it?
Whatever the case may be, each feeling you hold on to serves a purpose.
Perhaps the Universe presented you an opportunity to learn discernment when they sent the manipulative person into your life.
Maybe you failed THIS time because of an approach you took, and you’re being challenged to gain a new perspective.
The thing is: you’ll never know what the Universe is trying to teach you if you don’t face your fear head on. And you’ll never be able to truly grow, get better, and experience the life of your dreams until you do.
Now, it’s just time to acknowledge your clutter so you can send it on its way and make room for the things that. DO spark joy in your life.
Separate Your Bullshit to Reveal Your Golden Desires
Adapting the KonMari method – tidying by category and not location – let’s see how you can build on the work you did in calcination and dissolution previously. After this, you’ll finish up with a self-reflection meditation.
What do your clothes say about you now?
Clothes help you make a statement in a crowd. Your outfit let’s people know how you feel about yourself, and how you want others to see you.
Think about how you dress at work, at home, when you go out to dinner, etc.
Do you dress the same? Do you have outfits for special occasions? Do you own an outfit that makes you feel powerful???
Do you act differently when you wear different clothing?
I’m sure you’ve heard some nonsense like, “The suit makes the man,” right? And truthfully, this saying is a reflection of how you use exterior things to adopt a persona you’re trying to achieve.
As the years go on and you learn social skills, you’ll pick up behaviors that serve you well and drop (or tone down) behaviors that aren’t appropriate in certain groups. You layer these attitudes on over your true self to blend in and be that. “team player.”
It’s necessary to camouflage yourself – after all, there ARE predators out there who will take advantage of your good nature!
The trouble we get into here is sometimes we pick up attitudes and beliefs that serve us for a short period of time, but we never let them go. If we continue to layer on these created personas over and over again. Until eventually, we can lose touch with who we are at our heart center.
Shed what no longer serves you, and wear something that makes you feel empowered.
It’s time to take stock of what you wear now, and how you want to be perceived.
What makes you feel comfortable?
What makes you feel relaxed?
What makes you feel empowered?
What makes you feel confident?
What makes you feel attractive?
The clothes you wear say a lot about how you feel about yourself, and how you want to be seen in the world. Make sure to hold an image of yourself in your mind – someone you’re SO proud to be! – and make your wardrobe for her. Spend time with each item of clothing and figure out what makes you feel good about yourself.
As Marie Kondo says, “If it doesn’t spark joy, let it go.”
What you know, what you want to know
Are you a book hoarder? (If so, find me on Facebook and we can be friends. Cool? Cool!)
Books are soooo important to society as a whole. They help us gain knowledge, develop empathy, and connect with a larger sense of who we are in this universe. But if you just let your books collect dust in random corners of your home, you’re not honoring their true purpose: telling an incredible story to someone who really needs to hear it.
I’m a big Neil Gaiman fan myself, and I’ve made a point to collect his books, comic books, children’s stories, even little figurines of his characters.
On top of my other books that I’ve collected throughout my lifetime, I could have several small libraries.
I can’t help it. I love having books in my home. They make me feel regal, and grounded.
But when I moved across the country, I realized I had limited space to bring books.
I made a choice to only keep the books that I knew I would reread on stormy days and eventually share with my kids.
If you can believe it, my “spark my joy pile” was ALL Neil Gaiman works and the classics. Everything else had served its purpose to me and I sent them to a second-hand bookstore to be picked up by another eager reader.
I realized something in this process: the stories I kept are the ones that inspired me to be different, to have discernment with a sense of humor, and to always go after my dreams.
Those are the kind of stories I’m happy to hang on to.
Move on to your next chapter
Take stock of the books you have, and the stories they tell. For fun, see if there’s a theme you gravitate toward. What is the genre? What is the hidden lesson? Who are the characters?
Know what these stories do for you, how they’ve helped you in your life, and what you can still learn from them.
If you feel like you can still learn from these stories, by all means KEEP them! Maybe reorganize them on your shelf so you can see them more often. (They miss you.)
If you’ve already learned the lesson, thank the book for its time with you and let it share its message with someone else. It’s time with you is done.
(Reader, I’m going to stretch the analogy here just a bit. Just stick with me.)
There are important papers that you need to keep to prove your existence and the agreements you make. Marriage certificates, home loans, social security cards, etc. Then there are paper items you collect that just don’t matter as much.
Imagine going to the DMV and presenting them with a coupon you got in the mail and ask for a new state ID. (Please don’t try, it won’t work.)
There are documents that are important to keep, and others that can be tossed. In a spiritual sense, the contracts you keep are tied with your soul, your soul family, and your mission here on this earth.
You are here to serve a purpose. But when clutter builds up, be it physically or spiritually, you can’t see the forest through the trees.
Lay out the contracts that matter
Honor the things you want to achieve in this lifetime. Stick to your heart’s desires. Make peace with who you are now and where you’re going.
It may help to visualize yourself sitting at a desk, with a blank paper in front of you.
With your eyes closed, imagine that this blank paper is a representation of the things your soul wants to accomplish while it’s here on earth.
Imagine words starting to form on the page, from top to bottom. At the very end if it is a blank line asking for your signature.
What are you committing your name to?
The things you’ve collected for the hell of it
If you’ve ever visited the beach, you’ve probably collected seashells. You take them home, wash them off to reveal their iridescence, and then place them on a shelf. Every so often, you’ll revisit this shelf holding your seashells and think fondly of your time at the beach.
These little accessories serve a joyful purpose to you for a time, but eventually are left to be forgotten.
There’s an important duality that comes with the little things: take stock of the little things in life that matter so much to you, and let the little things go.
Appreciate the little things
Some little things will mean a great deal to you, and it’s important to cherish those. You can honor the things that matter to you by giving them more attention and showing more love.
Go through all of your miscellaneous things – from kitchen to garage to shelves — and notice the things that draw you in.
Hold them. Clean them. Reorganize them in a fresh way so you can feel that joy again.
Allow everything else can fall away. Find them a new home to give joy to someone else.
The things you love that don’t love you back
You’ve definitely collected sentimental items over the years; your grandma’s jewelry, your kid’s artwork, your bouquet from your wedding…the list goes on and on.
I am a believer that sentimental items are what demonstrate the love in your home.
But every so often a sentimental piece loses its luster, but you feel too guilty to get rid of it.
Holding on to old love doesn’t make room for new love. You’ve got to let some of it go.
Think about any old relationships you’ve had that you’re SOOO glad you got out of. If you were still with that person, how would that impact your life today?
They’d still be sucking the joy out of you, right? Taking up space in your life so there was no way for you to just move on.
Honor your past, because it brought you to where you are today. If you’re ready to grow more into your power, you’ve got to let go of that old love.
Let go of love to receive love
Allow yourself to let go of whatever old love you’re holding on to. If you feel the need, make a ritual out of it.
Collect anything that reminds you of that old joy and love so you can give it a proper send off.
Put these items in a box. (If it is not an item, write it down and put it in a box.)
Light a white candle, or light up a Himalayan Salt lamp.
Close your eyes.
Speak from your heart.
Honor the things that used to fill you with love. Identify what you loved about it. Thank it for its time with yo and ask it to leave you now.
You’ve got better things coming your way. Believe that.
KonMari Method and Separation in Alchemy
I’m so grateful for Marie Kondo and her KonMari method. She demonstrates by separating yourself from the bullshit that weighs you down, you can begin to live the life you want. She is graceful, beautiful, and such an inspiration to anyone who pays attention.
Separation in alchemy is about washing away all that no longer serves you or your personal/spiritual growth. Allow yourself to let go of the things that don’t resonate with your soul mission and get into alignment with who you’re supposed to be.
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