Social media is exploding with a new Netflix series starring organizing guru Marie Kondo. The KonMari method has gained popularity for its unique way of choosing which house items to toss – keeping only those that spark joy. But Miss Kondo’s method is more than decluttering your living space. It is about letting go of unnecessary things from your past and living in the present moment.
Decluttering your home primarily involves reassessing and organizing your life. “Keep only those things that speak to your heart. Then take the plunge and discard all the rest. By doing this, you can reset your life and embark on a new lifestyle,” Miss Kondo wrote in her best-seller, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing.
Making real changes in your life is more than downsizing your wardrobe. Check out this adulting checklist to welcome 2019.
1: Downsize your wardrobe
The KonMari method uses five categories in organizing: clothes, books, papers, miscellaneous items, and sentimental items. You would need to gather all your belongings and pile them up in one spot. Start with your clothes. Place every item from your closet on your bed to create a mountain of clothes. Touch each clothing and ask yourself if it sparks joy.
You might be surprised by how many clothes you have accumulated in your space. Keep the pieces that spark joy, or you find useful, and donate or discard the rest.
2: Know the lifestyle you want to live
People are partial with the KonMari method on books. Writer Anakana Schofield’s views on Twitter caused quite the reaction when she insisted on keeping an extensive library. Ms. Kondo’s method is more than just simply tossing items that don’t give that jolt of happiness. It teaches a minimalist lifestyle whether it involves shoes or paperbacks.
One of the adulting life hacks you should master is knowing the lifestyle you want to live. If you choose to surround yourself with books, will you have the time to sit down and read them? If not, wouldn't it be better to donate them to a public library for others to enjoy?
3: Organize the many papers around you
The third category in the KonMari method, after clothes and books, is papers. Bills, envelopes, insurance policies, car registration, and other papers can consume space in your home. Do you still have your electric bills from two years ago? What about the flyers from your favorite fast food? It is time to organize these to clear your space and your mind.
Miss Kondo recommends categorizing your papers into pending, important, and miscellaneous. The pending documents include mails to be sent out; the important papers include insurance premium bills, and the marketing flyers go to the miscellaneous folder. Consider going paperless as well. Digital documents are easier to organize, plus it is eco-friendly.
4: Toss out miscellaneous items
“But when we really delve into the reasons for why we can’t let something go, there are only two: an attachment to the past or fear for the future,” wrote Miss Kondo. Do you still have your school notes from high school? What about the mugs you got from past Christmases that are now gathering dust in the cupboard? Toss them in a box for donation or the recycling shop.
Decluttering your cabinets and disposing of the items that no longer serve you any purpose has an underlying psychological impact. You are able to let go of unnecessary things from your past and start living in the present.
5: Use a planner or productivity app
Planners and organizers are must-haves for a more organized life. Lately, people are going gaga over bullet journals, which involved bulleted lists. It helps in tracking pending and important tasks. However, carrying a planner or journal around isn't for everyone. You can opt for apps to aid you in organizing your tasks.
Todoist is a plain vanilla app that allows you to list your to-dos, set reminders, and share tasks with your officemates. You can also use Google Calendar in your computer and smartphone. This productivity tool can also send you notifications on chores.
6: Set fund transfers to your savings account
Master adulting this 2019 by boosting your savings. Similar with mandatory deductions on your gross pay, it is advisable to set aside a portion of your income for your savings. You can do this by opening a separate bank account and setting automatic fund transfers from your employee account every payday. Typically, you should be saving at least 20 percent of your disposable income, but you can try with 10 percent, then, 15, and 20 as months go by. Ask your bank about high-earning products such as time deposits.
7: Increase your income at home
In 2019, consider condo living. Condos are strategically located at the heart of cities or near major transportation networks. Living in such residential communities will help you cut down transport expenses and save on gym membership fees. With the extra time in your hand, you can engage in freelance work to increase your income.
Browse for online jobs that you can do at home. You can earn extra by writing online content for businesses and/or managing their social media accounts. A lot of employees also teach English to foreign students via Skype. Make sure you plan your schedule well to accommodate your additional responsibilities.
8: Track your expenses efficiently
The adulting life is about being responsible for your own needs and luxuries. Requests for emergency money from your parents is okay once in a while, but you should be on top of your rent, bills, and allowance.
Track your earnings and expenses with a planner/organizer or a budgeting app. PocketGuard is a free app that tells you how much money you have after deducting your rent and utilities, grocery, and allotments for savings and investments. It allows you to track your expenditures for the day, week or month.
9: Go to the market and cook your meals
Being an adult means you need to better manage your finances. Gone are the days when you could splurge your allowance and still able to sleep in a comfortable bed and eat good food. Now that you are on your own, be smarter in spending your hard-earned money.
Allot time to go to the market or grocery and buy your weekly food supply. Dining out is costly, both on your finances and health. You can prep your meals the night before or early in the morning. Instead of the usual greasy burgers for your afternoon snacks, pack fruit slices and energy bars in your bag.
10: Schedule regular fitness activities
As you age, your body undergoes various changes. Recovering from illnesses, even seasonal colds, now take longer. Be an adult by putting your health first. It is a must to organize your schedule and include health and fitness-related activities in your daily life.
Your weekdays may be too hectic to hit the gym. No worries. You can do even 15 minutes of aerobic exercises in the morning. Open your weekend for 1 to 2 hours of rigorous physical activities. You can do weight lifting, enroll in jiu-jitsu classes, or invite friends for a basketball match in your condo court.
11: Spend time only with those who truly matter
A well-rounded adult knows when to say “no” to invites. You don’t need to be at every party. Remember that going out costs money, time, and energy. If you were used to having weekly drinks with friends, you need to reassess your lifestyle. A twice-a-month partying is reasonable. You should also allot time to talk to family members. Schedule a monthly Sunday brunch with your parents and siblings.
Organize your life by choosing the people you would like to spend quality time with. You are old enough to know in what company you're comfortable with, so don't be afraid to decline invitations.
12: Declutter your mind
Being an adult means being comfortable being alone. A recent study suggests that people who like spending time alone are more likely to be open-minded. In contrast to popular belief, these individuals are not less sociable.
Spending time on your own can help you rest and recharge. It can declutter your mind so you could plan your schedule and tasks better. You can do a 10-minute meditation or a leisure walk around your community in the evening. What's important is you take a break from the noise around you.
It is 2019. You are going to be another year older. It is time to make real changes in how you organize your living space, your activities, and your priorities. Master adulting with these organization life hacks.