CURRENT OBSESSIONS.

I thought it would be a good idea to share some of my current obsessions with whoever wants to read them.  Maybe then people will understand me more?  Or maybe I can just find a filter to talk about everything that is currently making me happy.
Anyway, here it goes…

Currently listening to: Lemonade by Beyonce

Let me pull a Kanye moment and state that Lemonade is the greatest Beyonce album OF ALL TIME (and yes, all caps necessary).  I have always been a fan of Queen Bey, but wow.  This album has blown me away.  If you haven’t seen the visual album that she debuted on HBO, please do yourself a massive favor and watch it, or at the very least, listen to it.  I love the whole album but my absolute favorite can’t get out of your head songs are “Hold Up,” “Don’t Hurt Yourself,” “Sorry,””Daddy Lessons,” “All Night” and “Formation.”  I will be listening to it religiously for the next month straight because I am going to be seeing her perform in Chicago on May 27th!  And to that I say, “YASSS QUEEN.”

Currently watching: Season 6 of Game of Thrones

I have been a Game of Thrones fan for a while now, but this 6th season in particular is keeping my interest.  I think this season is more exciting for me personally because it is finally caught up with the books.  This makes it more fun to watch with Ben who has read all of the books and before this season, knew what was going to happen.  Now we both are not sure how it is going to play out (although we have many fan theories) and it is one of my favorite things to look forward to on Sunday nights.  I also have a Monday ritual of talking to a few of my coworkers who are also fans of the show, about the most recent episode and how it ties in with our predictions and theories.  If you haven’t watched Game of Thrones yet, I would recommend it!  If it’s not your thing, find another TV show that you like and care about and can talk to others with either online or in person.  It’s a great experience to be able to communicate with others something that you are all obsessing over equally.

Currently reading: The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion by Elle Luna12353276_1530484570604400_320312348_n

Is there a book that you have read and as soon as you have read it, you want to tell everyone about it?  And it’s a book that can be relatable to literally everyone?  This book is that book for me.  I finished it quickly and immediately told Ben to read it.  He read about half of it and told me that we needed to buy this book.  I am frequently check out books from the library as a test drive before buying them now, but this is a book that I want to buy for myself, as well as everyone I know.  It’s a beautifully written and illustrated book by Elle Luna about finding your passion, whatever that may be.  It is a work of inspiration that will give the reader the determination to know what they should do versus what they must do in terms of finding their calling and how to get started.  I recommend that everyone should read this book, especially if you are in a rut or needing something to inspire you in the next phase of your life (hello, recent graduates).

I hope this post can relate to others who may be currently obsessing over the same things (ahem, Game of Thrones fans, please talk to me).  I might do more of these in the future, but for now these are my current obsessions and I don’t see them going away any time soon!

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The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.

 

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Some of you may have already heard about a little book called, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.  If you haven’t heard of it yet, get on the bandwagon!  It is an international best seller that has sold over two million copies since it was published in October of 2014.  To prove it’s popularity, it took me quite a while to get this book in my own hands.  I had requested this book at my local library back in April of 2015 and received it just in time for the new 2016 year.

Interestingly enough, my resolution for 2016 is to “simplify my life” and of course, the first step of this goal is to quite literally get rid of the clutter and tidy up!  For me personally, this book couldn’t have come at a better time.  I recently finished it, and thought I would share about some of what I liked, what I disliked, and what I have learned from The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.

First of all, I should state that I have never considered myself to be a neat or tidy person.  It’s just not a gene that I was born with, despite my Mother’s best efforts (thanks for trying, Mom!).  It takes a while for clutter to drive me crazy, and it’s usually when it is obviously a mess and needs to be cleaned in a desperate last minute attempt before guest arrive (hello, procrastination).

When I lived at home, it was much easier to know when I should tidy up because my parents would tell me and usually prevent me from doing what I wanted until it was done.  When I began living on my own, though, it became my complete responsibility (as did everything else, such as bills…ugh) and I gave myself much more time to get it done…almost too much time.

Since moving in with Ben, it has become even more of a struggle since there is twice the amount of stuff now.  He also does not happen to have the “cleaning gene.”  We are good at holding ourselves accountable for daily clutter (such as mail, dishes, laundry, etc.) but we still have a lot of things that we need to go through and get rid of, both individually and together, after close to a year of living together.  I thought this book would help me get the kick that I needed to accomplish this never ending task that I have been putting off for quite a while.

Luckily, I did find this book and Marie Kondo’s method of tidying to be helpful, though it is pretty extreme compared to other methods that I have heard before and tried to implement in my life.  The basic concept of her method of tidying is to go through each item individually and ask yourself, “Does this spark joy?”  If the answer is yes, you keep the item and find a place for it in your home.  If the answer is no or even maybe, you donate it or throw it away.  No more questions asked.  No debating it anymore.  Simple as that.  Based on this concept alone, I was able to get rid of a lot of things in my home (especially my closet) that were no longer giving me joy.  And I didn’t wait around to see if I could try selling these items first.  I just donated them or threw them away so I could get it over with.  And it felt great!

Marie Kondo also recommends to tackle and sort everything by category instead of by room, since multiple items that are in the same category tend to be found in separate rooms.  Her tidying order is clothes, books, papers, miscellaneous items and sentimental items.  I agree that when I started with my clothes first and it helped me to get into the mode and get excited about getting rid of other items I no longer needed or felt any joy from.  She also goes into more detailed descriptions of how to begin sorting through these categories, what should be kept and what shouldn’t be, how long certain things (particularly papers) should be kept for, and how to begin sorting through everything and designating each item it’s own space in your home.  I found all of this to be very helpful and it made me want to buy the book so I don’t forget her good advice and helpful tips when I need them later.

One thing that I didn’t like was her almost obsessive need for tidying and making everything perfect.  Again, her concept will seem pretty extreme for anyone who is normally not neat, such as myself.  She has been tidying and organizing her things since she was very young and obviously was born to tidy up and share her wisdom with others.  I think the rest of us can be cut some slack and try to do our best.

The other thing that I didn’t really care for is that she suggests communicating with our possessions and let them know that we are appreciative of them.  I understand that you should be grateful for your possessions, but to verbally greet and thank them out loud every day was a bit much for me to take in.

Overall, this book has inspired me and has already helped me with my own struggles of getting rid of, sorting, and tidying my things.  I am looking forward to using the Marie Kondo method for the rest of our home and to simplify my way of living for 2016!

If you are interested in getting in on the tidying craze with me, please comment or message me so we can share the experience together!  If you have also read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, let me know what you think.  I am interested in seeing what other people thought of it and if they agree with me.  If you haven’t read it yet but would like to, you can find it on Amazon here.

Happy tidying!