Is Swedish Death Cleaning the Next Marie Kondo Method?

what is swedish death cleaning edited hero image
Bynder/Unsplash

There are countless methods to go about cleaning and organizing your space, but there’s a new trend making waves – Swedish Death Cleaning. No, it’s not a heavy metal band, and initially the concept may even seem a little depressing, but if you’re looking to live a minimalist life, you need to give Death Cleaning a go.

Those of us who have Netflix (isn’t that everyone at this point?) are more than aware that Marie Kondo has a new show based on her smash hit organizing book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. And if you’ve ever asked yourself if something in your life “sparks joy,” thank Marie for coining the term (it was the title for her follow-up book). You may have even tried the KonMari method yourself. Many people swear by her techniques while others just don’t get it. If you feel more than a little awkward saying “thank you” to your socks, and are looking to go minimalist, Death Cleaning is your answer.

Swedish Death Cleaning is not as grim as it may sound. Literally translating from the word ‘döstädning’ as death (dö) cleaning (städning), the concept does force you to think about your own mortality. But that’s not the whole philosophy behind the practice. In Sweden, people of a certain age will slowly begin to downsize their belongings, keeping only the most meaningful pieces. This is intended to make things easier for their children once they die. Rather than having to go through a lifetime of objects, your children will know that everything left in your home once you’re gone had meaning for you.

The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning
what is swedish death cleaning margaret magnusson amazon

But what if you don’t have kids? Or what if you aren’t even close to being “of a certain age?” You can still apply the Death Cleaning concept to your home right now, without it being a way to plan for your end days. It’s as simple as tackling one storage area at a time over the next few weeks and purging the things you don’t use, don’t need, or haven’t seen in the last ten years.

The point of Death Cleaning, and in turn minimalism, is not to prove how few earthly possessions you can get by with. It is about only having items that mean something to you, are useful, and let you live in peace. Being surrounded by junk (even if that junk is neatly organized) is an unconscious stressor you don’t need in this hectic world of constant stimulation.

For more information on the normal, everyday type of cleaning (unrelated to your future demise), check out this guide on how to clean your house in less than 30 minutes.

Outdoors

The Best Car Camping Gear for Any Season

Long nights, coolers full of beer, and comfortable beds are a good recipe for year-round car camping adventures. Here's what you need to bring.
Fashion & Style

The Best Minimalist Wallets for Men Prove that Less Truly is More

All you need are your cards and ID and you'll be good to go.
Fashion & Style

The Best Men’s Watches Under $500, From Stylish to Smart

You don't have to break the bank to own an awesome timepiece. Here are some of the best men's watches under $500, including a variety of styles and mechanisms.
Outdoors

Backpacking Checklist: 10 Essentials to Bring on Every Adventure

The only way to completely prevent accidents in the backcountry is to never go outside. The next best option is to carry these 10 backpacking essentials.
Living

Moving Tips: How to Make Moving Day as Easy as Possible

Moving is something that we all have to do and almost all of us hate doing. With a few tips and tricks, though, moving day can be less painful.
Living

Men’s Apartment Essentials to Turn Your Bachelor Pad Into a Home

Whether you're shopping for your first apartment, moving into a new place, or just bored with your current layout, every guy needs these home accessories.
Living

Hurricane Preparedness Checklist: How to Get Ready for the Next Storm

Even if your area is not in the direct path of a hurricane, you may still experience power outages, flooding, or travel hindrances due to damage from the storm.
Living

The Best Pillows Designed With Stomach Sleepers In Mind

Pillows designed for stomach sleepers are distinguished by their thin yet supportive design, which allows the head to sink into the pillow to promote spinal alignment.
Living

How to Choose the Best Organic Mattress for Greener Sleep

You've heard of organic veggies, but what about organic mattresses?
Living

Grovemade Redefines What a Headphone Stand Can Be

Grovemade's newest product is a complete redesign of the classic headphone stand. The Manual has the first look before it goes on sale.
Living

6 Amazing Northeast Waterfront Homes Where You Can Summer Like a Celebrity

From the Hamptons to Nantucket, these stunning homes are the stuff summer dreams are made of.
Living

Here’s Your Chance to Party Like a Rockstar At Your Own Luxury Estate

Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz says “thanks for the memories” and puts his $2,395,000 Encino, California estate on the market.
Living

Wake Up Easier With the Best Down Pillows of 2019

Poor sleep got you down? These luxury down pillows might just be the solution.
Living

The Best Latex Pillows for Neck and Back Pain

Do you toss and turn at night? A latex pillow might be just what you need.