Marie Kondo shot to popularity in early 2019 when her show ‘Tidying Up‘ became a hit on Netflix. Prior to this however, she was already working her magic through her #1 bestselling book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. The book itself was published in 2011 but many people had no idea about her method, the KonMari method of simplifying life.
Marie Kondo’s approach itself is also very simple. Get rid of anything that does not ‘spark joy.’ It involves thanking the item for serving you well and gently placing it in a box/bag to give away. The KonMari method has helped tens of thousands of people worldwide appreciate the things they love and inspired them to simplify life by tossing (gently, of course) the rest.
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According to her website, Marie Kondo’s mission is
to help more people tidy their spaces by choosing joy”
Look at those words – “by choosing joy.”
Most other methods of organizing and managing your finances involve cutting back on expenses so much so that there is barely any JOY!
So is it actually possible to manage your finances and STILL spark joy?
What if you could really apply the KonMari method to your finances?
Can Marie Kondo’s magic work on your money as well?
It turns out that the KonMari method might be just what you need to simplify and organize your finances. Digging in, decluttering and ‘folding’ back your finances JUST enough to be able to see every last dollar and cent you own will finally help you keep on top of things. Let’s get started. Let’s work some of Marie Kondo’s KonMari magic!
How to Apply the KonMari Method to your Finances
Step 1: Be Thankful
Take a minute to be thankful for what your money has been doing for you. Whether it has been putting a roof over your head, food on the table and/or luxury vacations, be thankful.
To do this step, you can either sit and reflect for a minute or you can do this full-blown Marie Kondo style by getting on the floor on your knees.
Step 2: Take a Look at your Budget
If you don’t already have a budget, now is the time to create one by writing down all your income and expenditure. Follow this 7 Step Budgeting for Beginners Guide to get started.
Each chunk of your expenditure represents a ‘room’ in your home. You are going to declutter and organize each category or ‘room.’
The main categories of a budget are the following:
You should try to stick to the usual percentages for each category. This is where decluttering, organizing and planning your finances come into play. Which brings me to the next step…
Step 3: Declutter one ‘Room’ at a time – See what ‘Sparks Joy’
Look at each category in your budget. You are going to declutter and organize one category at a time.
For example, analyze your food category. If you are spending $1000 per month on food, break this down into a weekly amount. This means you are spending around $250 weekly on groceries and food.
Related: How to Cut your Grocery Bill in Half
Gather a few of your recent grocery receipts (or jog your memory a little) and think about what are some of the items you usually buy. Go to your pantry and take a look around.
Do you often go to the grocery store and pick up items that just remain sitting in your pantry never to be used? Do these spark joy? If they don’t, then scratch them off your grocery list!
Are there any other items that you buy and use, but they don’t really spark joy? Scratch them off your list!
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This KonMari approach to budgeting may actually be easier to stick to and follow through with because it doesn’t guilt-trip you into not buying a slice of cake or a tub of ice cream. By all means, buy it if it sparks joy (once you can afford it, of course!).
Do this for each category in your budget. Analyze each and decide whether it’s important or not. Do you sleep better at night knowing that your home is insured (aka this sparks joy)? Go ahead and keep that in your budget! Remove anything that is unnecessary and try to reduce what you spend on each category.
NOTE: This does NOT mean that you should go buy ALL THE SHOES, and ALL THE CLOTHES and ALL THE ICE CREAM just because it sparks joy and you can afford. Please be reasonable! This step is more about decluttering than adding extra expenses to your list!
Step 4: Organize and Simplify your Finances
Here is where you’re going to get your sh*t together. Check out some of the tips below.
-Consolidate your bank accounts
You should have a checking account AND a savings account. Your checking account is to provide a simple and safe way to manage your deposits and withdrawals. This account may not have the best interest rates but it should be close by (such as a local bank) and easily accessible since it is for the purpose of managing your money better.
You should do proper research when trying to decide on the best savings account. This account should have great rates but does not NEED to be easily accessible since this should not be an account that you’re dipping into.
For best saving practices, set up a standing order from your checking account so that a set amount of money can be transferred into your savings account as soon as you get paid. The more automating you do, the easier it becomes for you.
These are the only two accounts that are necessary for slaying your money goals!
-Reduce your subscriptions
Are subscriptions cluttering your monthly expenses? Throw them out! Some typical subscriptions that can be cut include Amazon Prime, Netflix, ABCMouse (for the moms – let’s do the teaching instead!), Magazines, Meal Prep services etc.
Have several loans? Are you paying off a student loan, car loan AND credit card debt? These are three different payments to monitor. To make things simpler, ask your bank about debt consolidation and convert everything to one easy payment instead!
In addition to this, streamline your credit cards for extra organization of your finances. Instead of having several credit cards, choose the best option (with the best rewards for you) and get rid of the rest.
Use an app or website to gather all your finances and financial documents in one easy place. Many of these apps are free and can actually help you save tons of money too! Check out this list of 29 Best Money Saving Apps to help you save and manage your money!
Step 5: Always keep on top of Things
Great job! You’ve done the major work but you’ve now reached what many consider to be the toughest part. Yes, I am talking about staying on top of things and keeping yourself on track.
You’ve reorganized your finances and you now have everything under control. You need to keep it this way… Decluttered and Organized. The biggest problem is keeping this up!
Some of the things you can do to stay on track:
- Keep a budget book (or use a site/app to do this)
- Start a Finance Bullet Journal
- Stick to your new habits
- Have an accountability partner
- Keep all your bills organized in one safe place
- Keep a calendar which clearly displays all due dates of bills and payments
So that’s it, guys! Isn’t the KonMari method a great way to declutter and organize your finances so you could finally start smashing your money goals?!
***Before you go, are you looking to manage your money better this year? Sign up for my free 5-Days Money Management Course!***
Is there anything else you’d add to this list? Share with us in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!
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