Stepping into the beautiful ballroom at Le Meridien Hotel in Piccadilly, I took my seat at one of the elegant tables and glanced down. In front of me was a turquoise booklet just aching to be filled with information. I had been waiting for this day for over a year. Leaving a toddler and baby of four months at home with Daddy, I knew I had to make the most of these three days. It was April 19 th 2018 ~ the start of the very first European KonMari™ seminar in London, and the birthday of my new career.
I wasn’t alone. There were 107 other participants from over 20 countries, some had travelled from as far afield as Australia, China and South America. They were just as eager and excited as I was; when all the seats were filled, the energy in the room was electric. We all shared one thing in common; our admiration and respect for ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up’ and its author Marie Kondo. They had touched our lives in some way or another, and now we were on the first step of our journey to bring that very magic to the lives of others, through the role of KonMari™ Consultant.
Within an hour, we would all get to meet our idol. Marie graced the stage and expressed sincere appreciation for us all by taking a few moments to carefully look around the room, taking each person in. Marie speaks little English but through listening to her interpreter, we were able to get to know her better. She’s quirky, has a great sense of humor and appears to be small enough to fit into your pocket (just imagine the endless organising possibilities that would entail!).
It was fascinating to hear her story and how her love of tidying and organisation has led millions of readers to embark on their own tidying marathon, with transformative results. She shared how one of her first clients wanted to work with her because she was planning to leave her husband. Her client wanted to ensure all of the home affairs were in order before her departure. After her sessions with Marie she had learnt how to identify what sparked joy in her life, and what items she wanted to keep by taking them in her hands one at a time, and being mindful of the changes which occurred in her body. In one of her final sessions, the client revealed: ‘Last week when I touched my husband, I realized he sparked joy!’ This is the beauty of The KonMari Method™; it can change people’s lives in a variety of ways, with beautiful, often unexpected results.
After her opening, Marie handed us over to Nozomi Takeda, who was one of her previous clients and first recruit when she was expanding her tidying business. Takeda is now one of Japan’s top tidying consultants and is the head of the KonMari™ training programme. We were asked to bring along an item that we find difficult to fold and the room fell into a mesmerized silence as we watch Takeda fold a fitted bedsheet, ruffled top and bunny-eared onesie. Experienced KonMari™ Consultants Eliette et Marieke Staub from Clarity Home Detox in Geneva also led us in our training. Within the three days, we covered every KonMari™ principle in depth, engaged in a range of practical activities including role play and mock interviews to improve our consultant listening ear and learnt some of the skills on how to turn our KonMari™ passion into a business. As well as following ‘The KonMari™ Code’, we are encouraged to stay true to our own values when we launch our own tidying business.
There are seven steps to becoming a fully certified KonMari™ consultant:
Read ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up’ and ‘Spark Joy’.
Tidy your own home using The KonMari Method™. I had to prove I had done this by submitting a series of photographs of my living space, bedroom, wardrobe and kitchen. My photographs had to be verified before I was given a place at the seminar.
Attend a KonMari™ seminar.
Following the seminar, you will be added to a Facebook group for trainee consultants where you are encouraged to support each other in completing your certification.
Complete ten practice sessions and submit reports for each one. I worked with two clients, one of which had to complete their tidying marathon (all five categories of the method).
Once your reports are evaluated, you are given access to an online exam. I am sworn to secrecy not to reveal anything about the content of the exam but I will say that it was must harder than I had originally anticipated!
Once you have passed the exam, the final step is to sign the Consultant Contract and pay an annual membership fee of $500.
Becoming a Certified KonMari™ Consultant has taken four months from start to finish; at times, it’s been like having a third child! As a full-time stay at home mum of two, I’m already enjoying the flexibility of being my own boss and setting my own hours for when I work with clients. Most importantly, I get to spend the majority of my time with my two favorite mini people, Romeo and Hermione: they are the main reason I’ve changed my career, and I couldn’t think of a more fulfilling job where I am able to help bring the magic of tidying up to the people who need it most.
Katrina is a Certified KonMari™ Consultant and the founder of Spark Joy London. She is an experienced teacher and discovered the book 'The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up' by Marie Kondo when she was pregnant with her first child. She followed the principles of The KonMari Method™ to organise her home when planning a home-birth. Two years later, and after successfully delivering two children at home, Katrina completed her training with Marie Kondo to become a Certified KonMari™ Consultant. After experiencing such a positive transformation in her own life, she is committed to teaching and supporting others in achieving a more organised life through tidying, which sparks joy.