The Art of How to Let Go & Discard

What is the key to being able to let go and discard, for good?

joy checking process

Visualize your Ideal lifestyle

“When you imagine your ideal lifestyle, you are actually clarifying why you want to tidy and identifying the kind of life you want to live once you have finished.”

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Marie Kondo
  • Step 1: Visualize in detail the ideal lifestyle you dream of
  • Step 2: Identify why you want to live that lifestyle
  • Step 3: Dive into the specifics of how you want to live day by day.
  • When we skip this step it-
    • delays the whole tidying process
    • puts you at higher risk for rebound

Focus on What Sparks Joy, not what to Discard

What adds value to your life? When you touch something that brings you joy-

  • A feeling of thrill, often a full body experience
  • A pleasing design/look that makes you feel peaceful
  • An item with a high degree of functionality that makes life easier
  • A sense of rightness
  • An items thats useful in daily life

When faced with something that does not spark joy-

  • you feel heavy
  • your hands pause
  • you tilt your head slightly and frown
  • you have to think
  • you feel guilty
  • for essential items that don’t spark joy, think about the purpose

The Joy Checking Process

  • Step 1: Pick up one item at a time
  • Step 2: Hold it.
    • If you’re unsure if it Sparks Joy hug it close to your heart!
    • Gaze at it.
    • If it is clothing, please try it on!
  • Step 3: Pay attention to how your body reacts- how do you feel?
  • Step 4: If you do not know if it Sparks Joy, pick 2-3 similar items and compare
  • Step 5: Show gratitude for each item you keep or discard.

Try not to focus on-

  • reducing
  • efficient storage methods
  • feeling wasteful
  • giving items away

Instead focus on-

  • choosing belongings that inspire joy
  • enjoying life according to your own standards
  • appreciate how the items you discard supported you in your life
  • what role each item has in your life

Reframe Letting Go

When we let go of our belongings a weight is lifted. We keep items that truly Spark Joy┬«. We also allow the items we give to spark joy in other peoples lives. There’s an opportunity to learn from every material possession we own, even ones we discard.

  • If you let go of something you’ve used until it’s broken and worn out: appreciate how its helped to enhance your life
  • If you let go of something you never used: it taught you a lesson in how you shop, that it did not have a purpose in your life
  • Think consciously about each item you discard: how will you choose to live moving forward? how you will acquire new things?

Keep items with Confidence

If you keep it then…

  • Use and appreciate it.
  • Create a forever home for every item: find it and know exactly what you have.
  • It’s natural to not put away everything all the time. No one is perfect. Make it a priority to create positive habits. Maybe you won’t put belongings back all the time, every day, but commit to putting things away.

What is hard for you to let go?

Please note items discussed on this post were from the Marie Kondo books and KonMari networking group. Find more resources here.