I find it far, far easier to accumulate than de-clutter. This sounds like it might be an actually useful tip though, especially for clearing out older, mildly sentimental things:
Ask yourself of each object: does it spark joy in my heart?
This is the central message of Kondo’s creed: the litmus test to whether to keep it or not is to ask yourself, does this object (whatever it is) spark joy in my heart? To work this out, you have to touch the object, and see what response that elicits inside you.
“Hold each item in your hands, as close to your heart as possible,” she says. “And then, pay close attention to how your body responds. When something sparks joy, you should feel a little thrill running through your body, as if your body is somehow slowly rising up to meet the item, embracing it even.”
Any such object has a place in your life, says Kondo. And once you are convinced of the spark of joy, you should be able to hold on to an item with confidence. You don’t need to make excuses for keeping it any more: you’ve proved to yourself that it’s important to you. But most objects in your life will not spark this joy – and these are the ones you should part with, again with confidence because you know they don’t mean enough to hold on to.