Q: My closet is so full of clothing, but I still can never find anything I want to wear! I don’t even know where to begin cleaning it out. Help!!
A: Have you ever woken up and said, “I don’t have anything to wear today!”? Most of us have. Can you imagine a morning when you’re in a hurry and able to grab an outfit with no regrets about your choice, then rush out the door feeling great?
Most people wear only a small percentage of the items they own. If you were to keep only the items in your closet that “spark joy”, (a concept created by the internationally known Japanese home organizer, Marie Kondo, in her famous Konmari method,) you would only have clothes you love and feel good in.
It’s a mere fraction of a second thought in our brain. It’s an instant thumbs up or thumbs down gut reaction. I tell clients that if you hesitate, that’s your answer, as you are most likely trying to second-guess yourself or talk yourself out of your decision if an item didn’t ‘spark joy’. If an item ‘sparks joy’, it’s a keeper. If it doesn’t, pass it on.
The list of excuses of why we hold onto things is extensive. Here are just a few of the reasons people give to hang on to something:
– It was expensive.
– It was a gift from___.
– I might wear it. (If you aren’t already, you probably won’t.)
– It used to be my favorite. (Do you still wear it or even like it?)
Be honest with yourself. Reasons you might not like the item are valid. For example:
· It itches.
· The neckline bothers me.
· The color doesn’t suit me.
· It doesn’t match anything else I own.
· My weight / build has changed and it doesn’t fit right anymore
Though radical, I find this method of decluttering a wardrobe very effective.
When you are sorting through your clothes, you MUST listen to your intuition. It takes practice. But it gets easier.
Here are my Pearls of Wisdom of how to Konmari your wardrobe:
– DO sort items by category. For example, pull out all your tops and sort them together, from start to finish. Then move on to the bottoms.
– DO listen to that first thought that pops into your head. Forget that you paid lots of money, that you wore it less than a handful of times, that is was a gift, that so-and-so expects you to wear it. FORGET ABOUT IT! If you don’t like it, for whatever reason, you are not going to convince yourself otherwise. It might be too big/too small/not your style/not your color/itchy/not flattering/your taste has changed/etc.
– DO remove it from your home ASAP. There is no need to throw out your clothing unless is it stained or damaged beyond repair. There are many people or places thrilled to take your castoffs. Post on Luach.com, post on your local Facebook re-homing group, arrange for a thrift store pickup, or donate to a gemach.
– DON’T second guess yourself.
– DON’T feel guilty about not liking something.
After you have gone through your closet using this method, keeping only the items which you love, the “I have nothing to wear” problem is solved. Try it. It just might make mornings a bit easier and less chaotic when you feel great about what you are wearing.