The KonMari method at work (in the office)

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By Kevin Eichenberger

For those of you who are unaware of the latest cultural phenomenon that fell off Netflix and into our homes, organisational icon Marie Kondo’s philosophy of keeping tidy is all about attuning your sensitivity for material possessions – and by extension, improving your personal well-being.

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As the KonMari method of Tidying Up is something that almost anyone with a cluttered home can get on board with, we attempted to apply it to our place of work to see if there were any positive effects to be had in our professional lives.

Whoever belongs to this desk, that guy needs an intervention.

Whoever belongs to this desk, that guy needs an intervention.

The Process

The KonMari philosophy entails a process that is vastly different from a forced intervention for hoarders. This is a procedure that must be embraced wholeheartedly for maximum benefit, so one should treat the process – at least the beginning – like a vacation.

A vacation – or a hot date.

A vacation – or a hot date.

Begin the process by making an effort to set aside some time out of your busy day and say something like “This will be the time” to yourself. Put on your best threads, allow yourself feel good – and dive right into the process.

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Clearing the Clutter

Go through your belongings category by category, starting with the most disposable items (such as brochures and documents) – and once you’ve got a hang of letting things go – transition to keepsakes and mementos.

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Starting with the things that don’t matter as much – old brochures, scrap papers, and the like – gets you prepared to do the same with things that seem to matter more.

Time to get acquainted with the trash can.

Time to get acquainted with the trash can.

After concluding an internal debate of whether something is absolutely necessary, the process gets much deeper while remaining almost as easy.

Measuring the Joy

A central tenet of the KonMari method involves determining what things “spark joy” – after some time spent putting old brochures and documents into the recycle bin, it becomes more apparent what would be of sentimental value and what just takes up space.

You'll probably need to keep these.

You'll probably need to keep these.

Things like gifts from thankful interns and pictures of gatherings with colleagues still bring the requisite “maximum joy” – but old calendars, notebooks, office party trappings, and other “komono” (knick-knacks) acquired from past events may seem less important after going through the initial exercise of throwing things out.

Thanking the Junk

The KonMari method entails thanking belongings for their service to help you come to terms with their disposal.

You'll probably look like a crazy person saying goodbye to the figurine, so use your inside voice.

You'll probably look like a crazy person saying goodbye to the figurine, so use your inside voice.

Another important aspect of this process involves thinking of your belongings as alive – as weird as that sounds, considering inanimate objects as living things with feelings helps you to reconcile the reasons for throwing them out.

Now you can get some real work done.

Now you can get some real work done.

By this point of the process, you should have a new perspective of what matters and what doesn’t – and just as everyone has been saying – it’s a liberating feeling that is as spiritually enlightening as it is strangely effective.

Here are some other reasons to keep things tidy – for your health and for your rental returns.

Want to contribute articles to StarProperty.my? Email: editor@starproperty.my
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