To many of us, the idea of domestic tidiness has never seemed so relevant - nor the need for it so urgent - as it does now, as quarantine stretches into the new norm. We Zoomed with Christine Dychiao, a prominent KonMari Consultant in the Philippines, to uncover the rationale behind tidying, and maybe get a tip or two on how to get it all started. You can also watch our IGTV special with Christine here for a deeper dive on closet cleansing.
What motivated you personally to become a KonMari consultant?
As our family got bigger, it seemed like clothes, toys and stuff in general just took over our home. I felt "stuffocated". I would buy organizing materials and extra shelves, got a bigger work desk, and even moved to a bigger space but those didn't help. I tried every tip and trick I'd come across and wasn't really successful at tidying until I read Marie Kondo's book, "the life changing magic of tidying up". When I put her rules to practice, it worked! It truly was life changing seeing not just our closets, desks, toy shelves and rooms clear up but felt the energy in our home shift as well. It made me realize how easy it actually is to tidy - as long as we had the right mindset and equipped ourselves with the proper techniques. I learned to declutter not just my stuff but my life in the process, and I wanted to be able to share this knowledge and support others in their tidying journey as well.
What changes have you seen in your clients who have adopted the KonMari method?
The beauty of this method isn't just evident in the client's physical space. It changes peoples lives and perspectives as well. It can be as simple as in the way they shop, they no longer consume mindlessly but approach a purchase with much thought now. It can also bring about dramatic changes or spur life changing decisions. I've had clients who after tidying either left a job they hated, got a promotion, started their own business, moved to a home that they loved, even found the courage to let go of a relationship that no longer sparked joy. The act of tidying our home doesn't just clear out actual clutter but mental clutter as well, opening psychological blocks and allowing us to make better life decisions.
Why is closet cleansing and organizing such a challenge for most people?
It can be challenging for many reasons. Either we don't know where to begin and so without even starting, we already feel overwhelmed with the idea of tidying. It could be that we don't know how to let go of things. Sometimes, it's really just a failure to assign a home for our belongings, so we can't make sense of how to store and organize them.
(Photo Credit: Iza of Life in Indigo Photography)
Do you personally have a default "uniform" or a capsule wardrobe that you keep on rotation? If so, what's in it? :) Is it something that you'd recommend for your clients?
My go-tos are jumpsuits and matching separates, so I don't have to think too much. I love the versatility of jeans and wear it with everything from basic tees to tops with interesting details. If you're into easy, laid-back dressing, I'd say go for it.
(Photo Credit: Christine Dychiao)
Do you "thank" each item after putting it in the sell/donate pile?
I actually do! It's not so much the act of saying thank you but the acknowledgment of how that item has served me that gives me the confidence to let go of it without guilt.
One quick tip on maximizing the usage of what's already in our closets. (Oftentimes there are items that we simply forget about!)
Store them in such a way that you see everything at a glance. Fold in drawers or store in clear containers (opaque boxes are ok as long as you have a good memory, haha). This way, you're acquainted with them and remember to use them.
(Christine's Own Closet)
What's giving you the most joy these days?
Cooking Korean dishes inspired by the K-dramas I've been watching!