After a divorce, it can be challenging to discard anything that reminded you of your marriage. If you wanted the divorce, it may feel healing to blow up or trash your wedding dress once the papers are filed. For others, especially those with children, you may decide to save some wedding memorabilia for their memories or special day. The next decisions you must make are what to save and what to discard.
Have you considered the KonMari method of tidying up your space? What would Marie Kondo say about saving your wedding memorabilia after your divorce?
What is KonMari and Who is Marie Kondo?
The KonMari method is a minimalist decluttering movement started by Marie Kondo. Her bestseller, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing, was released in late 2014 and inspired the movement. The humble beginnings of the movement began when she worked as an assistant at a Shinto shrine in Japan and began her organizing business. She now has a popular Netflix reality show where she helps those who are overwhelmed in their homes and stressed in their lives to “tidy up” and “spark joy”.
The basic premise of KonMari? If it doesn’t bring you joy, thank it and say goodbye.
Does KonMari Cover Divorce?
Marie Kondo’s KonMari method can be applied to any situation, as we’ve learned in the episodes of her Netflix show, Tidying Up. She works with newlyweds combining households, expectant couples, couples overwhelmed with children and more. While the show hasn’t included a divorcee or divorced single parent, in one particular episode, she did work with a widow who had been living in the same house for 30 years. Her husband had passed away and she was an empty nester looking to “spark joy” after her loss.
Some of Marie’s advice for creating calm and joy in the household:
- Tidying can often ease the pain of the past to help prepare for the future ahead.
- Start with a very clear image of what you want your life to look like after the tidying up.
- You’re not alone. Your belongings are there to support you.
- Wait to remove the items of your loved one until the very end of your organizing process.
- When you let go of an item that holds a lot of memories, say thank you from the heart.
- Don’t focus on what you want to get rid of; focus on what you want to keep.
- Recognize that you don’t have to ask anyone else’s opinion on what feels good for you.
- Store those items that have sentimental value in a way that sparks joy, for instance, in a beautiful keepsake box.
What “Sparks Joy” in Your Wedding Memorabilia?
Marie Kondo is very clear to remove any items that are “someday’s” or “yesterdays”. When you’re thinking of saving items for your children, such as photos, jewelry or other family keepsakes, those rules become a bit fuzzy.
Consider storing those items in a beautiful storage box that you don’t have to put away into a damp basement or garage. If you’re still too emotionally fragile to remove the items, remove them from your living space but put them someplace safe for you to go through later.
If you’re ready to declutter and remove items that are holding you down, say goodbye from the heart and then put the items away for donating. You may also consider earning money for your bright new future by hosting a yard sale or selling your wedding jewelry.
As you take on the decluttering process, your life and energy will transform into a lighter, freer feeling. You may begin with a picture of what your life could be but the KonMari process helps to frame that photo in a way that “sparks joy”. Take the time to be gentle with yourself through the process. Only you can decide what works best for you.
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