I am so excited to begin a new feature on my blog: interviews with my amazing clients!
I LOVE seeing how their lives transform during and after their KonMari journeys, and I’m bursting at the seams to share their stories with you.
Today, we’re hearing from Liss.
Liss lives in a quaint row home in Media, PA with her husband, two sons and their sweet blue-eyed dog. Over the course of six sessions, she worked SO hard to transform her home and, as she calls it, her lifestyle.
During our time together, I grew to admire her deeply. I’ve seen her kids really take to the process and her husband even got in on the action with his very own session. She also coined my favorite client quote of all time - “Guilt is not joy”.
We’re both a little sad that our official time together has come to an end. Luckily, she’s right here in my hometown, so it’s not really goodbye.
I asked Liss to share some thoughts about her journey, and her responses are below. #chills
The book refers to some life-changing magic. How has YOUR life changed?
I have a sense of ease in my life that I’ve never experienced before. My time at home feels calm and relaxed – it’s a true haven from the stressors of the world!
What has been the most rewarding part of this journey?
I know what brings me the most joy and love, and I confidently skip the rest. For anything that just can’t be skipped, I have systems for getting them done quickly and efficiently so I can get back to the good stuff. My things – both what I discarded and what I kept – taught me so much about myself, and I like what I learned.
What has been the most challenging part of this journey?
I struggled with the fact that certain areas of my home got worse before they got better. While I was completing clothes, books, and paper, sentimental items and komono would get pulled out of all their little hiding places in my closets and drawers, and then I had to find a place to pile them up until it was time to tidy those categories. I had boxes of miscellany in corners of my home and I hated it. I think I expected Pinterest-worthy spaces right away instead of respecting the process.
What has been most surprising about this journey?
I am amazed by how much less anxiety I have in general. Now that it’s gone, I’m surprised to look back and recognize how much anxiety I experienced on a daily basis. Now I know that the kids’ ballet uniforms are clean and in their bags. I know I’ve completed the permission slips and paid my bills. No more 3 AM worries! I’m still rather shocked by this.
Were any of the categories harder or easier than others?
Komono was very challenging, probably because it was vast! And out of Komono, my kitchen was the biggest project. It was an exhausting day, but it has also made one of the largest impacts on my life. It’s such a pleasant space now; we are cooking at home more and saving a lot of money that we used to spend on takeout because we just couldn’t deal with meal preparation.
How has daily life changed? (eg, getting ready, finding paperwork, quality time, etc.)
Almost everything about my daily rhythm has changed, but it’s most noticeable in the mornings. I barely have to look at what I’m choosing out of my closet and drawers – everything works together and everything looks and feels wonderful to wear. Even my jewelry is organized by color, so all I have to do is reach in the general direction of “blues”, “reds” or “metallics” and I know I’m going to end up with something that matches my outfit and makes me smile. I can’t make a bad choice! Another huge change is how much time I spend tidying and cleaning – it’s so much less! I do the 20/20/20 most evenings, but it usually takes me less than 20 minutes to tidy up. I don’t really tidy at all other than that; I’m just very consistent about putting things away as soon as I’m finished using them. On the weekends, the four of us in my family spend 30 minutes on cleaning, and we can finish the entire house: bathrooms, floors, counters, mirrors, and windows all get scrubbed/vacuumed/wiped in that time frame. Cleaning like that used to be a huge chore that I would tackle over several days, or (honestly) not at all. Now we do it together as a team, joyfully and quickly. Then we can enjoy our space and each other, go out into our community and play, and know we have a clean tidy home waiting for us.
What's the one piece of advice that you'd give to someone considering the KonMari Method?
I’d encourage you to make the commitment to yourself to get started right away, and to keep your intention on completing your tidying festival. A clear vision of *why* you are tidying, and *how* you want your life to look and feel afterwards will really help you stay motivated.
Do you fold your clothes KonMari-style? Is it a pain to keep up with?
I do! It is not time-consuming anymore. After a few months of folding this way, it became just as quick and easy as any other folding style.
Do you do the 20/20/20 with your family? How does that go?
I do the 20/20/20 six nights out of seven, as does my husband. Our kids join us 4-5 times per week. Usually it is really fun and there is a lot of enthusiasm. Sometimes they balk and it’s a drag.When the timer goes off and they stop, they are always happy with the results!
What's your new favorite spot in the house?
My bedroom. I used to love staying in hotels, mostly for their simple, clean, almost-empty rooms. I loved unpacking my suitcase and only having what I needed with me. So peaceful. I don’t have to go to a hotel to experience that anymore. My own bedroom at home is tidy and clean and the drawers have breathing room. The sheets and pillows are lovely and soft and the lighting is just right. I can truly relax and recharge in my room.
How has the family reacted to the new environment?
With gratitude! Throughout the process, all three of them gave me lots of words of praise and encouragement, because they felt the positive change right away. They’re especially appreciative of how easy it is to find their things and to put them away again. They’ve also noticed that I am not as grouchy as I used to be, and I am more available for fun. My sons LOVE doing their laundry, folding their clothes, and doing cleaning chores – I can see them taking pride in their work and how good it feels to know that they have important jobs to do. I feel very fortunate that I got immediate buy-in from my family. I give a lot of credit to “The Life-Changing Manga of Tidying Up.” My husband loved it and my 8-year-old has read it several times!
If you could do it all over again, is there anything that you would do differently?
I would try to be more gentle with myself. The KonMari Method is about tidying up our stuff, and our physical stuff is just the tip of the iceberg. Throughout my tidying festival, I found myself excavating through layers of personality, temperament, and memory. It’s intense! I got a bit impatient with myself a few times, but I learned to let myself feel my feelings and figure out what they were telling me. I’m so very glad I did this work. I feel as though my physical space is now a perfect reflection of my interior space: cozy, gracious, playful, and with my priorities aligned with my values.
Is there anything else that you'd like readers to know?
Hiring a Certified Professional Konmari Consultant is an investment, and it will pay dividends. I literally found money – cash and gift cards – throughout my home. I am saving money on groceries and takeout because I love cooking in my kitchen and getting creative. I don’t pay late fees anymore because my paperwork is organized. I hardly ever buy anything because I already have what I love and need, and when I do choose to buy something, I very intentionally buy the best I can afford, that is made sustainably, and won’t need to be replaced for a long time. And best of all, the personal well-being I feel is priceless.
What's next for you? What are you looking forward to?
Doing the tidying festival and spending time with Amanda was so much fun; I’m a little bit sad that this part of my journey is over. I’m looking forward to finding new ways to spend my time and money that spark maximum joy – I see a lot of travel in my future!
Stay tuned for more stories from my amazing KonMari clients. Together, we’re making the world less stressful, one space at a time.
To find a KonMari consultant in your area, you can search the KonMari consultant directory here.
If you are local to the Greater Philadelphia area and you’d like to work together, you can schedule a free phone consultation with me here.