My own ‘journey to tidy’ began when I hit 30 and has probably encompassed three house moves (two across Europe), a marriage, the loss of one beloved pet and the joyful addition of another, and most importantly, the birth of our son.
On some level though the seeds were there from childhood – I grew up in a busy home with 2 siblings and parents who worked long hours to build a successful business and care for their own parents. I wasn’t the tidiest child, though had the usual good intentions. I would take it upon myself to tidy the kitchen after dinner and spend ages on it, only to be truly surprised and disappointed when the clutter crept back in almost immediately. My brother would go one step further and gather up each of our possessions before depositing them in our rooms, although my dad’s were never moved beyond the boundaries of ‘his’ chair. Above all I recall the frustration of tidying never being quite finished. Life, and everyone’s immediate needs, got in the way.
I like to think that I’ve now reached adulthood and have a family of my own I’ve found a good balance. My focus is on having a home that’s comfortable, low-maintenance and filled only with items that bring joy for us. I’ve moved from the standpoint of ‘tidying it all up’ to ‘slimming it all down’.
Making a conscious effort to surround myself only with things that truly spark joy has definitely helped me find a place I’m comfortable with on the tidying spectrum. I can invite friends to visit without needing to undertake a huge clean up, but at the same time will not hold back from picking up something beautiful from the weekend market if it brings that lovely fuzz of excitement somewhere where I imagine the soul to be.
The decision to become a KonMari consultant was actually introduced by my wife. ‘Go to New York, you’re good at this’ she said after seeing me sighing enviously over Marie Kondo’s announcement that she would be training new consultants. I knew I had done a decent job in our own home and enjoyed walking friends and family through the process, but until that point had never considered making Tidying Up my profession. It all made sense though, and 5 weeks later I was bouncing my non-sleeping son on my knee, excited to meet THE Marie Kondo, as we flew over the Atlantic.
And it was great. I had found my people.
I’ve found more mental freedom on my tidying journey and work as an organiser than I would ever have thought possible. The process of folding and sorting is therapeutic for sure, and it’s a pleasant experience to choose an outfit when the wardrobe is well organised. But more than that, the time I save daily, and the changes I work to achieve for my amazing clients, can now be spent on personal development, pursuing hobbies, and, most importantly, spending time with family.