Making Room and Sparking Joy: Decluttering for a Good Cause

By April 18, 2019Home & Garden, How-To

As someone wise once said, “One person’s trash is another person’s treasure.” Odds are good that at this very moment, there’s something in your home that you’ve been meaning to get rid of, and someone out there who would be excited to have it. Don’t toss your unwanted clothes, home goods, books, movies, or even furniture – donate them to Boomerangs and we’ll help them find new homes! What better way to kick off spring cleaning season than by supporting a good cause like the programs and services of AIDS Action?

Of course, decluttering is often easier said than done, which is why so many of us tend to put it off. What if you have a hard time saying goodbye, even if you haven’t worn that shirt or watched that movie in years? How do you start sifting through all the stuff you’ve managed to collect (where did it all even come from??) and how do you know which of it you no longer need?

Luckily, there are folks who are so good at organizing that they do it for a living – folks like real life superhero and all around delightful person Marie Kondo. A Japanese organizing consultant, author, and recent star of her own Netflix series, Kondo developed the KonMari method of tidying up and it’s taking the world by storm. We think it’s the perfect way to make spring cleaning and donating way less intimidating.

The KonMari has one simple question at its core: Does it spark joy? “Sparking joy” basically means “makes you happy that you own this.” When you look at that ceramic cat cookie jar, do you smile? When you hold up that shirt, are you excited to wear it again? If you don’t feel any particular way about an item, and it doesn’t have a practical use in your home (sorry, but you probably shouldn’t donate that toilet brush), then you don’t really need it.

Kondo recommends tackling the tidying process by category, rather than by room. Start with clothing; put all the clothes you own (yes, literally all the clothes) on your bed and survey the likely shocking mountain in front of you. Then, go piece by piece, holding up each item and asking yourself if it makes you happy. If not, put it your Boomerangs donate pile so it can spark joy for someone else! Then move on to the other categories that Kondo lists: books, papers, miscellaneous (kitchen, bath, garage, media, knick knacks, etc.), and sentimental items.

Once you know what you’re keeping, all you need to do is figure out where it goes. Kondo suggests finding a place for every item to belong so you won’t have to think about where to put something later. When you know that spatula goes in the left drawer and those plates go in the cabinet over the sink, for example, it’s much quicker to clean up after dinner. Plus you’ll score some major adulting points for being so organized!

Now you’re ready to start your spring cleaning like a champ. And remember to please donate to Boomerangs when you’re done – we love sparking joy for our customers and for the clients at AIDS Action!

Comments

comments

About Bren Cole

Bren Cole is Content Creation and Social Media Manager at Fenway Health, where she oversees social media communications as well as email, website, and blog content for both Fenway and AIDS Action Committee. She also serves as an Ambassador for the Boston chapter of the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network and is a member of the Young Leaders Council at Fenway Health.