How to Declutter Your Kitchen the KonMari Way (Week 2)

Welcome to week 2! Hope you are all off to a great start. If this is your first introduction to decluttering and the Marie Kondo process, you might be a little confused. That’s okay. We all start somewhere!

To help, I’m going to post videos this week so you can see what I’m doing in my kitchen, and if we can work out our schedules and camera equipment, I'll post a video of me helping a friend declutter her kitchen too! 

The first video here is an overview of my kitchen. I have some problem areas, as you'll see, but you'll also see a rather barren kitchen, which I realized as I was shooting this video. So, I just want you to remember that I've already gone through the KonMari process, plus, I live alone and I don't do a whole lot of baking or entertaining, so don't get discouraged! 

But, you want to know what to do in your kitchen, so here we go!

#1: Clean the decks

If you’re still working through getting your kitchen relatively clean, that’s ok. But this is step 1. It’s difficult to declutter if you’re also working your way through piles of mail or garbage or dishes. This isn’t a race. Keep working through this until you’ve got relative tidiness - perfection is not required.

#2: Start (Small) Decluttering

The essence of the Marie Kondo way is to:

  1. Combine all “like” things into a pile (i.e. you MUST remove it from wherever it’s living right now).

  2. Keep only what you love.

Where do you start?

Odds are good that many things that are “alike” may be off in different areas. Which makes it difficult to know where to start. To help, here’s a pretty thorough checklist that covers everything you’re likely to have in your kitchen. Feel free to follow it from top to bottom, or at random.

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Whatever you choose, make sure you’ve gathered ALL of that category into a pile (even if some pieces aren’t even in the kitchen).

What’s the goal here?

Think of it like Tetris. You’re trying to sort your house into matching pieces.

How do you achieve this?

A little bit at a time. Do as many categories on the list as you can each day:

  1. Gather all the likes items together into a pile.

  2. Take stock of what you have. Did you realize you had multiple copies of the same thing?

  3. Pick each item up in your hands and decide, “Does this truly bring me joy?”

  4. Either keep or discard.

If you need a refresher on how to go through the basic decluttering process, re-read these posts:

  1. What’s this Spark-Joy thing?

  2. How to Let Go of Your Stuff (Part 1)

  3. How to Let Go of Your Stuff (Part 2)

It’s easy to get overwhelmed, and I want you to be successful. Start with some of the easier categories first.

What if I Don’t Understand This “Categories” Thing?

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While the Marie Kondo process works by you decluttering by category, it can also be overwhelming. I urge you to keep at it. It’s the best way to pull everything you own out of the woodwork. You’ll see the volume of stuff you have in one place. It also gives you an idea of where to put those items.

Once you’ve got similar items together, you’re going to want to keep them together (you’re building your Tetris game here).

It’s the best way to build a better relationship between you, your stuff, and your space. After you’ve done this, you’ll have a much more intimate relationship with your home. You’ll see (and know) just how much space you actually have, whether you live in a big or small home.

Trust me, you have more space than you realize. That’s one of the magical things about doing the Marie Kondo process.

But….

If you’re more overwhelmed than motivated, then just start small. Start with a cupboard or a drawer. Doing the Marie Kondo process is overwhelming. Sometimes you just need to start decluttering, and perhaps at a later date you’ll be in a better space to do the Marie Kondo process the way she does it.

Any progress is progress!

I’ve Got My Pile Decluttered - Now What?

This is going to be the most challenging part. Because, until you’ve fully decluttered one area, you’re not going to see the full picture of how much space you have. You won’t know the volume of all the items you’re working with until you’ve fully decluttered a whole area.

You might realize an entire drawer full of things can be tossed. In which case, you now have a free drawer. Maybe something in the cupboard works better there. Now you have space in the cupboard. You can shift something there. So on and so forth.

My best advice is: Keep all like items together at all costs.

You're doing great! You've got this xoxo