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2019: The Year of Tidying Up Blog Post

Pairing Down and Tidying Up with Allie

It’s official: 2019 is the year of tidying up. For those of you who have a little too much “stuff” lying around your home (you know who you are), it’s time to turn a new leaf. Don’t blame me! I don’t make the rules; we can thank Marie Kondo for that. I did, however, take it upon myself to tidy up my space and start out the new year right. Spoiler alert: my entire sock and underwear drawer is now file-folded, and I am a new person because of it.

The Influences:

On January 1st Netflix released their Netflix original, Tidying up with Marie Kondo. This series features Kondo going to the houses of several families across the United States. She helps them clean up using The KonMari Method of decluttering that she originally introduced in her book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. After binge-watching the series in my coincidentally disheveled room, I felt obligated to put her methods into practice. When she spoke directly to camera it was almost like she was giving me a personal call to action.

Marie Kondo isn’t the only person that I was exposed to who was preaching the magic of tidying up on social media. I had also recently stumbled upon an organizing business on Instagram called Life in Jeneral (@lifeinjeneral). In January they released a 31-day organizing challenge that assigned small organizing tasks each day. By the end of the month your entire space should be organized. Their detailed videos- on everything from how to decant pantry staples to how to properly fold socks- made following along with the process that much easier. With so many resources I had no excuses to not get my life together.

The Experience:

The culmination of these two influences pushed me to successfully declutter my apartment and start the new year out right. As I started organizing each section of my room, I kept only the things that brought me joy - which is a key element of The KonMari Method. I thanked the things that I decided to donate and organized what I had left. The thanking process is something that Kondo also teaches, as it allows you to express gratitude for your belongings and feel less guilt about discarding them.

For the folding and organizing, I took most of my inspiration from Life In Jeneral. Their  Instagram stories taught me how to fold everything from my jeans to my sports bras. As I alluded to in my spoiler alert, everything right down to my underwear is now file folded - and it feels great. Having my room done, I moved on to my kitchen shelves. Life in Jeneral advocates decanting your pantry staples in order to keep your pantry looking both organized and aesthetically pleasing. For me, this meant removing things like my coffee beans and brown rice from their plastic packaging and putting them into glass jars. Luckily I had more than enough aha glass jars for this task. New packaging made it so much easier to see how much I had left of these staples. It also happened to make my pantry shelf oddly Instagram-worthy. While no one is keeping score in the game of tidying up, I feel like I got double points for this move because it also helped me declutter the vast amount of my aha jars that I accumulated.

The Takeaways:

I now understand why Marie Kondo titled her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. I quickly found out that organizing your sock drawer has a far greater impact than making it easier to find matching socks. Small changes in my sock drawer rippled out to make big changes in my overall wellbeing. I truly didn’t realize how much stress clutter creates until I removed clutter from the equation. Having an organized space is paramount for productivity and staying motivated. I have found myself waking up earlier, getting ahead on my school work, and really just feeling better all together.

So, while I didn’t decide to make 2019 the year of tidying up, you can now consider me the newest spokesperson for the movement. With this new title, I am here to tell you the thing that you never knew you needed to hear: you, too, can become the best version of yourself in 2019. It all starts with file folded underwear.

With Pure Intentions,

Allie Gardner

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