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How the KonMari Method Applies to Money Management

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September 13, 2019

By now, you’ve probably heard of Marie Kondo. She rose to fame as a tidying expert, best-selling author, and star Netflix’s massively successful show, “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo”. As a child, Kondo was introduced to the art of the organization. She became so taken by the process that she began her own tidying consultant business while she was still studying as a student in Tokyo. Her love and expertise in organizing have reached people from around the world and has helped them transform their cluttered homes and spaces into peaceful places to feel inspired by. 

Throughout her success, Kondo developed the KonMari Method. This method encourages tidying by category instead of a location. The KonMari Method begins with the organization of clothes, then moves on to books, papers, komono (miscellaneous items), and sentimental items. The KonMari Method asks those who practice it only to keep items that speak to the heart and to discard any items that no longer spark joy. When an item is discarded, Kondo encourages you to thank them for their service before letting them go. This philosophy helps improve our effort to be more mindful and to always look forward instead of behind. 

The KonMari Method includes six rules for tidying:

1. Commit yourself to tidying up.

2. Imagine your ideal lifestyle. 

3. Finish discarding first.

4. Tidy by category, not by location.

5. Follow the right order. 

6. Ask yourself if it sparks joy. 

So, what does the KonMari Method have to do with money management and Wellspent? More than you might think at first. Whether it’s through her books, Netflix show, or the KonMari method, Marie Kondo is asking people to determine what brings them value in life and what doesn’t. At Wellspent, we’re helping Canadians design a life they love by revealing what is no longer bringing them joy based on their spending habits. But it doesn’t stop there. 

Here are a few other ways the KonMari method lends itself to money management and Wellspent:

1. Prepare to make a change in your spending 

The first step toward managing your money better is asking yourself to commit to making a change. You may not be able to identify where your patterns are yet or what the triggers are that make you unhappy with your spending, but you do know you need to make a change. Downloading the Wellspent app is a great way to begin your commitment to changing the way you think and feel about money. 

2. Determine the things that bring you value

We begin your path to better spending by asking you to reflect on each of your transactions. With repeated reflection, you will start to determine which purchases bring you joy and which purchases do not. This practice will ultimately help you discover the things that bring you the most value in your spending habits as well as your life. 

3. Organize the way you spend your money 

Each of your transactions in Wellspent will automatically be added to categories to help you view your spending in an organized fashion. If you want to drill down your spending even further, you can utilize the tagging feature to personalize the way you are tracking the money you spend. Adding multiple tags to any transaction will allow you to add more context to your purchases and easily find groups of purchases at a later time.

4. Set goals to change your spending habits

In order to clean out the clutter in your finances long-term, you will need to begin setting some money goals for yourself. The Wellspent “Do Better” feature guides you towards improving the way you are spending your money by highlighting past experiences of regret. When we notice a bad habit or behaviour, we’ll simply prompt you to “do better”. This action encourages you to begin setting goals that will help you improve your behaviours in the future.

5. Ask yourself if it makes you happy 

Marie Kondo asks her clients if an item they are contemplating keeping still sparks joy, and Wellspent encourages you to ask yourself a similar question when it comes to the transactions you make. Our method of money management encourages you to ask yourself if a purchase will make you happy before you commit to buy it. This process connects us to a mindful practice that can successfully and happily impact all areas of your life. Learn more about what it means to be mindful and how to apply the practice to your spending

6. Design the life you love 

When you make the most of all the money management features available to you in Wellspent, you will be able to utilize the exact tools and guidance you need to design the life you love. This can be achieved by recognizing and accepting the less than desirable behaviours and habits you’ve formed and created a plan to change them. When you apply those changes with your ability to think mindfully and spend with intention, you will enable yourself to find value in your purchases and the way you manage your money. 

Learn more about how Wellspent can help you make better choices with your money

This article offers general information only and is not intended as legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. While information presented is believed to be factual and current, its accuracy is not guaranteed and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subjects discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the author(s) as of the date of publication and are subject to change.  No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or its affiliates.