The KonMari App Is Right here—However Is It Life-Altering?

I found The Life Changing Magic of Tidying up after I was working at a bookstore, and these books had been flying out of the shop in what appeared like a gust of wind (stopping on the three money registers first). My life may definitely used some altering, I believed. I used to be in between jobs on the time, so my aspect hustle had turn out to be my solely hustle. I really had the time to throw all my life’s belongings on the ground, hand choose the gadgets that sparked pleasure, and set them again in my closets and drawers in a respectful, organized approach—the essential tenet of the KonMari technique.

After all it modified my life. It gave me a way of objective, a approach to hold me inside the home, as an alternative of out in Manhattan shopping for extra garments from H&M that seemed nice on their mannequins however complicated in my mirror (an identical shorts-and-shirt set with gold jaguar motif?). I advised my neat-freak Dad that I had lastly discovered pleasure in cleanliness, and it aggravated him: “I’ve been telling you this your complete life! Why did you solely pay attention when she advised you?”

Picture by Mark Weinberg

Marie Kondo has that attract: the best way she anthropomorphizes coats and socks (“they work so laborious for you”), however doesn’t mince phrases when she tells you to let go of sentimental objects (like books, which, no thanks). She’s the trendy girl’s perfect mentor, a fruitful combine of caprice and hard love. So after I heard, final week, that there’s a new KonMari app, I used to be thrilled. It was lastly time to revisit organization-inspired life classes I had certainly slacked off on within the two years since I learn the unique ebook.

The app serves as a sort of social media platform for tidiers, the place the primary display screen you bump into is a feed of different customers’ “earlier than and after” images. I noticed a submit the place anyone tried to make use of the app to promote her soon-to-be-discarded equipment. If the brains behind the app play it proper, the app may flip right into a helpful useful resource, a sort of Craigslist for Marie Kondo followers (Kondoslist, if I’ll).

Some customers ask for recommendation. Some even specific doubt: “Is it okay to search out one thing that does not spark pleasure each time I open my closet? Does it imply I wasn’t trustworthy with myself after I did my first pleasure verify?” I discover this a bit worrisome, as a result of the KonMari technique appears to have brought on this consumer to overthink her pleasure, an emotion that, at its core, is carefree—the antithesis of over-thinking. Who determines the consumer’s pleasure—the consumer herself, or Marie Kondo? The KonMari technique, on this case, appears to have sparked extra anxiousness than pleasure—and anxiousness causes folks to spend cash on self-help books like Marie Kondo’s.

To the app’s credit score, nevertheless, it is free, and the useful, delicate responses the inquiring consumer bought from fellow app customers was additionally free.

What’s instantly irritating, although, is how buggy the app is. You’ll be able to solely add one photograph at a time, and verify off both “earlier than photograph” or “after photograph.” So if you wish to add your after photograph, the one folks really need to have a look at, you must repeat the method. (An interface the place you can add each concurrently would extra probably the most sense.) Plus, it’s not intuitive, so I ended up importing my earlier than/after images three separate occasions, crowding the feed. I’m clearly not the one one who bungled this, as a result of different a couple of customers’ uploads additionally present up a number of occasions. “Why don’t you simply delete it?,” you ask. I couldn’t! There is no such thing as a choice for deleting images; you possibly can solely report them as inappropriate.

I don’t like how a complete part of the app, “Consultants,” is devoted to data on how one can apply to turn out to be a house guide for the KonMari technique. As well, that web page would not even carry the knowledge; it solely hyperlinks out to a special web page on

Yep, that seminar is $2,000!

It’s okay for the data to be there, however does it must take up a lot actual property? That area might be higher spent on a couple of of the useful diagrams from the unique ebook, to point out you tips on how to fold t-shirts or retailer plastic luggage. It gave me the sensation that the app cared much less about serving to folks clear their properties, and extra about recruiting extra Konmari evangelists. As Heather Havrilesky pointed out in The Minimize, that enlargement of the Marie Kondo empire is ironic in itself: How are extra books and stationery and knickknacks supposed that will help you delitter? If tidying up is meant to clear headspace so that you can observe your desires, passions, and objectives, how far into these are you going to get in the event you spend all of your time decluttering?

Possibly our Design & Residence Editor was right to lose her copy of Spark Joy.

However right here’s what I do like in regards to the app. It’s good to trace your Spring Cleansing progress. You even win little badges for each part of the home you clear up and add images of. (Nonetheless, I used to be a bit peeved that I didn’t win a badge for cleansing up my baker’s rack, which falls below the class of komono, or miscellany.) And “Kitchen” would not even have its personal class, which it completely deserves. However hey, that’s not the purpose. Have a look at what I did to my (and my three roommates’) tea assortment:

More counter space for me!
Extra counter area for me!
Picture by Nikkitha Bakshani

This made my weekend. It added additional counter area to my small kitchen, which I used to chop onions for our no-recipe vegetable chili as an alternative of ordering take-out. It impressed me to sort out my garments subsequent, after I lastly tossed that jaguar motif two-piece set, grimly accepting that it seemed heinous on me, and made some cash promoting my garments at a secondhand store whereas donating the remainder to charity. I do know the KonMari technique strongly suggests getting all of your Spring Cleansing executed in someday, however the app might be used as a kind of progress-tracker, so you possibly can cut up the classes you cowl over a number of weekends, which is nice in case you are working full-time.

So do you have to get the app? It’s actually as much as you. Should you really feel like sharing your Spring Cleansing progress with a social community of likeminded people will inspire you to scrub out, go for it. However what I liked probably the most in regards to the unique ebook is that it modified my habits for the higher. I went from being perpetually messy to having a pure alarm clock in my head each Sunday saying, “tidy up!” My weeks are higher for it.

A 20-minute course of that I can end whereas listening to a podcast, tidying is now a private ritual that I don’t need to spoil by sharing it on social media or successful a badge for. Its rewards don’t work in a traceable system; they’re purely psychological. Marie Kondo’s first ebook conveyed as a lot—however for me, the app solely sparks indifference.

Have you ever tried the app? Tell us your ideas!

Marie Kondo, KonMari, app

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