Joy of Less Client Interview: Paul

Paul was my first...

My first client to go through the entire KonMari process. Not only was he dedicated and motivated, he was a lot of fun to work with! I thought it would be informative to interview Paul about the process from his perspective and see if there were any surprises or challenges he faced. 

1. What attracted you to the KonMari process? Was there anything you were concerned about before starting?

The ethos of KonMari – sparking joy through tidying up – is something that certainly resonates with me.  I can’t stand clutter – and keep my place clean and tidy.   I live in a small apartment so am conscious about how I use my space.   I’m attracted to minimalism and know that keeping my place open and uncluttered gives me joy.   I’m also one of those people that, when the mood strikes, truly enjoys going through my closet and editing my clothes.  I feel lighter afterward!    That said, like everyone, I had ‘pockets of procrastination’ throughout my home – drawers, cupboards, closets that were not organized in any way.  Stuff had simply accumulated over the years.  I was attracted to having a systematic approach to tackling these areas.   Curiously, my only concern before embarking on the process was that I might feel obliged to get rid of items before I was prepared to.   Any worries about the KonMari method being too ‘radical’ were quickly diffused as I started working with my gracious KonMari coach and consultant Marina!

2. What were some of the most difficult parts of the process for you? Any categories of items that you found especially tough?

The beauty of the KonMari process – tidying up by categories – allows you to tackle the easier stuff first and gain confidence for what lies ahead.   Going through my closet and editing clothes was fun!  And although I wasn’t sure I would sustain new KonMari folding techniques (sushi roll socks and origami crane underwear – just kidding on the second one!), I have now found that this is just second nature.   

The book category seemed overwhelming at first, not only because I have a large, well-stuffed bookcase but because I also realized my books were imbued with sentimental attachments as well.   As with any task however, breaking it down and briefly considering each book to determine whether it sparked joy, resulted in a whole new bookcase and a new way of seeing my collection of titles.    The Komono category – all the miscellaneous categories (CDs, electronic supplies, hardware, cleaning products, kitchen equipment etc.) – certainly took the most time.   No sentiment here; just a sometimes-overwhelming sense of ‘where do I begin?’   Here again, it was tremendous to work with a KonMari consultant and coach like Marina, providing tips and encouragement - and keeping the mood light!

3. Did you find having a consultant help you to complete the process? If so, in what ways?

I found it extremely helpful to work with a KonMari consultant.  Being a natural-born procrastinator, I can safely say that it is unlikely I have would have ever achieved the results I have without working with a consultant!  Marina provided a great background and introduction to the KonMari method, gave structure to our weekly organizing sessions, and offered tremendously helpful tips for organizing specific categories of items.   Like hiring a personal fitness trainer to get into shape, working with Marina provided an ideal combination of motivation, guidance and encouragement to reach my goals.  No pain no gain!

4. What do you think of the end result? Has it affected your daily life? Any surprises or epiphanies?

I’m tremendously pleased with the end result!   There truly is a magical quality to tidying up, being organized, knowing what I have and where to find it.   Being a visual person, I love how the same clean aesthetic that I enjoy in my living space now extends to my interior organizational spaces as well.  Who could image that opening a drawer could be a visually pleasing experience – rather than a frustrating exercise in rummaging around?   The experience has also surfaced ‘hidden treasures’ – books I never noticed, sweaters that laid buried, a travel memento now repurposed as a bookmark.   Knowing what I have and where to find it has also helped with something as simple as household inventories.  Weekly shopping lists are quick and easy when you know exactly where to check if you need new supplies.  And when a new item comes into my house that I want to hang onto, I know exactly where to put it! 

5. What would you say to people considering the KonMari Method and using a KonMari Consultant?

I honestly believe that the KonMari Method can be life-changing.   Through a simple and straightforward process, it has the potential to reorient our relationship to our stuff – uncovering what is essential and what sparks joy and distinguishing it from all the other stuff that just takes up space and can simply fall away.    I found that working with Marina, my KonMari consultant, was extremely helpful in guiding this process.   It provided the structure and motivation I needed to move through what could have been a daunting prospect with ease.   Marina’s creativity, flexibility and open-minded good nature made her the ideal guide through the KonMari process!