Marie Kondo’s de-cluttering concept of ‘sparking joy’ is a personification of my own personal hell.
I am one of those university students who still live at home and makes sure that no-one ever steps foot in my torturous, pigsty of a bedroom. A literal bomb could go off and almost everything would look the same with my personalised coke cans from 2010 wedged right between my bed and my primary school graduation certificate. However, I am moving out of my current home (my grandparents’ place) back into my new/old home (my parents’ house that has just been rebuilt) and I’ve been trying to spark joy as quickly as possible to ensure that I’m not moving back with all the shit I’ve accumulated over the years.
Why? Because moving sucks, especially when a lot of the stuff that you’ve kept from over the years is anime plushies that you bought for your ex-girlfriends. Except the only thing I’m really getting from this whole experience is spark annoy. The whole ‘spark joy’ concept is actually filled with a whole lot of other emotions and feelings like spark annoy, spark sad, spark memory, and spark get me out of here, why did I even start this bullshit exercise in the first place. I just want to watch anime and eat ice-cream.
Let’s start with spark annoy. This part of my journey involved cleaning, sifting through things I haven’t seen in years and not being able to separate with toys and games which I literally haven’t picked up in 50 years even though I’m only 21. I’ve found a few things like old video games and DVDs that I’ve been trying to flog off on eBay over the past few weeks but everything else is too sentimental to throw out. While attempting to spark this joy, I keep remembering how much I spent on certain items and reasoning that throwing them away would be a total waste, so I just keep them and let them waste away to nothing. The most surprising thing I found was a five-year-old apple in my old high school bag. At least I think it was an apple.
While I de-cluttered, I was taken back to a memory of each ‘thing’ that I’m either; a) throwing in the bin, b) putting aside for later use (get your mind out of the gutter, I’m talking about video games), c) selling on eBay because if I don’t want it, someone else will or d) keeping for myself because I can’t throw away the memory. It’s interesting how attached I am to my anime girl figurine collection that I’ve had for a couple of years now, but each one holds a memory of going into Sydney with my friends and picking each up, holding a special place in my heart.
I hold a dear connection to each thing in my room in some way or another and I guess that’s why they’re there in the first place. This clean out has sort of made me appreciate the amount of time that I put into crafting the place I spend the majority of my time in because it represents who I am as a person and collectively makes me feel warm on the inside, coincidentally, sparking joy. This specific experience also sparked some sadness within me and kind of irritated me, so much so that I kind of gave up with it all in the end.
This feeling is a strange sensation as I’m not sure if this revelation came about because I am attached to all these things in my room or if I’m just too lazy to sort through all my stuff. I guess I’ve never really had to do all that much spring cleaning or sparking joy since all the other things in my house (apart from the stuff in my room and in storage) are owned by my parents. I mean, I could try selling the family Christmas tree, but I feel that wouldn’t bring me any joy nor Christmas presents from Santa and I need that damn pony this year. At the end of the day, I get irritated by myself for not being as cut-throat as I should be with these damn material things that are only really filled with sentimental value and nothing else.
Damn my overbearing emotional connection to inanimate objects who will never love me back.
Basically, from this whole experience, I’ve found that nothing material in my life sparks me joy (except my anime girl figurines, obvi. Waifu for Laifu.) and I should basically just give up and throw everything in my room in the garbage, starting from scratch with my entire life and existence. How very depressing. If you would like any advice from my entire de-cluttering experience, don’t try to spark joy. Fuck you, Marie Kondo.