Minimal Waste Living - The KonMari Way
Updated: Feb 20
Surely it's bad for the planet to throw out all the possessions that you no longer want with wild abandon?
In all honesty that's true. There's no way to sugarcoat the fact that our planet is suffocating under the weight of the rubbish we discard.
The only way to help our planet is to be accountable for what we own. If you have mountains of boxes of unopened/ rarely used things that just sit there that's not helping anyone but neither is throwing it in landfill.
So let's break it down. What exactly does accountability mean?
It means you know exactly what you own, why you've kept it and as a result are responsible for its presence in your life. It means going through every nook and cranny of your home so that you have a thorough inventory of what you own. It can seem daunting to take this mammoth task on but remember the great thing with The KonMari method is that you take this on in categories which makes the task concise and manageable. Hiring a certified KonMari consultant is a great way to ensure you stay on track and achieve your tidying goals.
By now we know there is no "away". When we throw items in the bin they don't magically disappear just because they are out of sight and out of mind These items will end up in landfill polluting our earth, water and skies if we don't collectively manage where they end up.
Try to repair broken items before throwing away - such as learning to stitch that hole in your favourite sock before tossing it in the bin. Granted not everything can be recycled and/or repaired but by doing our best we do our bit for this planet in the best way we currently know-how.
Once we have carefully re-homed, repaired or recycled the items we no longer want, we are ready to take on the next step. That of conscious consuming.
By pledging to be a conscious consumer you make the decision to take ownership of your shopping habits instead of letting marketing/social media dictate your preferences which are usually driven by corporate profit rather than ethical responsibility.
Before your next shopping spree, try asking yourself the following questions:
1. Does it spark joy? - No doubt by now this is your mantra if you're anyway familiar with the work of Marie! Ask yourself will your home really benefit from this item or are you buying it because you feel bored or upset. Mindless consumerism wastes extra money that you could put towards the things you need. At the end of the day, your home should only be filled with the things you truly adore and which benefit your life.
2. Do I need it permanently? - In other words, can it be borrowed? It might be more beneficial to rent/ borrow clothes for that upcoming ski trip rather than buy items that may never be used again. This saves your wardrobe from building up and becoming unnecessarily cluttered.
Same goes for books- can you borrow from the library or a friend before purchasing? If you love the book and know you'll read it again, then you can always buy a second-hand copy.
3. Can it be bought second hand? - The circular economy is the name of the game when it comes to the ethical shopper. This will save both the earths resources and your hard-earned cash!
4. What will happen to this item when I no longer need it? - Is it made from plastic? Can it be recycled? If not would it be better to buy a version that is made of metal or wood? By analysing our purchases in this way we make sure they don't end up in landfill at the end of their lives.
Don't try to be perfect, just do your best.
At the end of the day with waste, there is no magic fix. We need to be careful about what we buy, reduce our plastic consumption as a whole and really value the things we own. By loving our homes and honouring what we put in them we show respect for our space and in turn the planet. Who knew tidying your home could have such an impact?