If You're Doing Marie Kondo Here's Where To Take Your Stuff

It's one thing to rid yourself of unwanted clutter, it's another to send it to landfill.

That's the message coming from experts who are seeing a huge rise in the amount of, well, stuff, being chucked away after people embrace the KonMari cleaning method.

For those still not familiar with the method (or if you've been living under a rock in which case you won't have needed it anyway, amirite?), the message is simple. We all have too much stuff and we should only keep the things that spark joy within us. Our homes will be calmer, our lives better, and living in order is really just sensible for us all.

READ MORE: How To Pack For A Trip The Marie Kondo Way

Yep, it's true -- clutter is not good for you. It can stop you being able to move or think or get on with your life.

Enter Marie Kondo and her KonMari method.

But with that decluttering comes a bunch of household goods, books, clothes and other things that need a home. And with that has come overflowing charity bins and waste. Not good. In fact, the National Association of Charitable Recycling Organisations (NACRO) estimates 60,000 tonnes of items are taken to landfill each year. And, according to Sustainability Victoria Acting CEO, Stephanie Ziersch, "Australians are the world's second largest consumers of textiles, buying on average 27 kilograms of new clothing and other textiles each year of which around $500 million worth of clothing is sent to landfill."

Image: Getty

Shocking, isn't it?

“While the concept of tidying your home, and letting go of objects that serve no purpose is important, waste avoidance is just as pressing,” Ziersch continued.

“We’re encouraging declutterers to take a moment to think about where they’re sending all those bags of joyless garments and remember the clutter does not just disappear once they’ve given it a kiss and thanked it for its service.

“Our simple request for Kondo-inspired declutterers is that instead of saying ‘thank you, next’ they instead find the joy in re-homing the items or recycling them thoughtfully and through the correct channels.

“In fact, there’s a Japanese approach known as mottainai that I suspect Marie Kondo would happily support. Quite simply, it encourages reflection on waste and action when it comes to reducing, reusing, recycling and respecting.”

READ MORE: Why High Income Earners Should Pay A Charity Levy

“The final suggestion is to take Marie Kondo’s inspiration into your shopping and ask if the item sparks joy before making purchases,” Ms Ziersch said.

Gemma Quinn, Certified Platinum KonMari consultant, assured 10 daily that the declutter queen and her team recognise the need to be mindful.

"We recommend letting go with thoughtfulness and that doesn't just mean putting something in the bin, but thinking 'who can benefit from this the most'. There are lots of different charities around the world who can pass on items in useful ways," she told 10 daily. "For example Rotary have a program where you can donate your reading glasses and they assess and distribute them around the world to people who need them. Also with something like furs, for example, it's hard to get rid of them because people have moral issues with them -- but there are charities who take furs and use them to comfort baby animals who have lost their mother."

A little Tasmanian devil benefits from a donated fur. Image: Snuggle Coats

They may be very specific, but the message is crucial  -- given that every man and his dog is KonMari crazy, we must think about what we're doing with our things.

"Lots of charities do get burdened with donated clothes so it's worth just stopping for a moment and thinking about it," said Gemma."There are also some charities who donate to people who have been released from prison, refugees, victims of domestic violence and the disadvantaged. "

A quick Google search will let you know who in your state will take items you may want to get rid of. And a quick call to them will ensure you're not inundating them with crap.

Seven simple tips for householders embarking on the KonMari journey, thanks to Sustainability Victoria
  • Consider selling unloved items on sites like eBay, Gumtree or Facebook.
  • Contact your local charity group to see if they are willing to pick up your unwanted furniture.
  • Gift your once-loved items to a friend or family member.
  • Take your old TVs and computers to drop off points where they are recycled as part of the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme.
  • Drop your mobile phones and tablets off for recycling at MobileMuster collection points found at phone shops and post offices.
  • Offer your good quality clothes to charities who will resell them for fundraising purposes, or potentially give them to disadvantaged people.
  • Contact your local council to find out how your items can be recycled locally.

Feature Image: Getty