Marie Kondo’s Reflections on Motherhood

Marie shares how her life has changed after having two daughters and her personal strategies for tidying with little ones.

My life has changed completely after becoming a mother. When I lived alone, I surrounded myself with things that sparked joy for me and dedicated a lot of time to my hobbies such as yoga, meditation, and reading. After becoming a mother, however, what sparks joy for me now is spending time with my family by reading picture books to my children or tidying together.

Establishing Tidying Norms

My husband and I established two simple tidying norms for our home together. The first was to decide the fixed places for all of our things, and the second was to return the items to their original places after we finished using them. (The children are still small, so they can’t do this well yet, but my husband and I have not broken this rule since we got married.)

Tidying in One Go With Children

I think that ‘everyday tiding’ is simply the act of returning something to its established home after it is used, so I don’t set a specific time to tidy — I tidy once I finish using an item. However, since my children scatter their various toys around the house until they fall asleep, I don’t necessarily tidy up each time they finish playing. I wait until after the girls fall asleep to take about 5 minutes to tidy up in one go, returning everything where they belong. (As readers may already be aware, ‘everyday tidying’ is different from the “tidying festivals” of the KonMari Method, where one tidies everything in one fell swoop.)

Foregoing Perfection

After becoming a mother, I was surprised by how much less personal time I had than I expected. I could no longer refocus my mind by doing yoga in the morning or meditate before going to sleep as regularly as I had before.
Just after my older daughter was born, there was a time when I felt unable to forgive myself for not being able to manage my life as I had before. However, after I had some time to adjust and gave birth to my second daughter, I feel that I’ve been able to let go of my need for perfection. This is partly because I’ve simply gotten used to my new daily life, but it is also because I gradually came to feel that the happiness that I’ve gained by having a child exceeds the happiness that came from seeking perfection.
I have also managed to let go of the feeling that I must always be perfect when tidying up. For tidying only, I feel confident that if I just have 30 minutes now, I will be able to return a space to its original organized state. There are definitely moments when you have a child and the room becomes unbelievably cluttered. But, even when I don’t have the chance to clean up right away, just knowing that I could return the room to a tidy state in 30 minutes makes me feel calmer. My modest self-confidence in tidying and knowing that the cluttered state is reversible supports me.

Deepened Gratitude

It hasn’t even been two years since my older daughter was born, but the time and labor involved in raising a child has been more than I imagined. And I think that effort is only possible because of love. Knowing this now, I realize that my mother has been pouring more love on our family than I had acknowledged at the time, and I am more thankful towards her (and of course my father) than I was before having my own children.
Artikel ini saya dapatkan dari Newsletter Marie Kondo
13 Mei 2017.

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