Marie Kondo just made us rethink how we declutter

This switch in mindset is exactly what's needed when you're finding it hard to let go

bookshelves organised in rainbow order
(Image credit: Kurashi at Home is available now)

Marie Kondo has just changed how we think about decluttering – by reframing the whole thing mentally. We spoke to the famous tidying expert for the release of her new book, Kurashi at Home.

When we asked her what she'd say to someone who finds it hard to let go of things, she shared a pearl of wisdom that will power us through our next clearout. Whether we're decluttering a wardrobe or kitchen, Marie Kondo's advice is to honour what you're keeping, rather than focusing on what you're putting in charity-or-chuck piles.

kitchen sink with old kettle and vase of flowers

(Image credit: Marie Kondo, Kurashi at Home)

Marie Kondo made us rethink how we declutter

'When things are hard to let go of, I always think, don’t think about letting go of things – think about what it is that you’re going to keep,' says Marie Kondo. 'Think about selecting the things that spark joy. 

'You’re doing the same thing at the end of the day, but you’re going about it in a more positive way,' she explains. 'And of course, expressing your gratitude to those objects that you’re letting go of as well.'

So next time we're sorting out our wardrobes or tidying our Monica Geller cupboard, we'll use it as a chance to sift out those belongings that are no longer earning their place. Making room for a few new pieces that we truly love...

Marie Kondo's book cover Kurashi at Home

(Image credit: Marie Kondo, Kurashi at Home)

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If you need some more practical tips for storage and organisation, the author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up also highlights that the KonMari method has a recommended order in which to go about tidying. So you start with clothes (which we can all streamline a little). 

Then you clear out books, papers, 'komono' which means your miscellaneous items. And then, finally, you tackle sentimental items. 

bookshelves organised in rainbow order

(Image credit: Marie Kondo, Kurashi at Home)

'If you tidy in this order, you’ll find it easier,' Marie assures. 'Even with clothes, if you start with the things where it’s easier for you to decide if it’s something that sparks joy or something you want to let go of, you’ll gradually hone your sensitivity to joy and find it easier.' Happy tidying!

Millie Hurst
Senior Content Editor

Millie Hurst was Senior Content Editor at Ideal Home from 2020-2022, and is now Section Editor at Homes & Gardens. Before stepping into the world of interiors, she worked as a Senior SEO Editor for News UK in both London and New York. You can usually find her looking up trending terms and finding real-life budget makeovers our readers love. Millie came up with the website's daily dupes article which gives readers ways to curate a stylish home for less.