The True Purpose of a Present is to be Received

“Try out every gift at least one time – even those that don’t immediately spark joy. The ability to feel what truly excites you is only gained through experience. Be adventurous and welcome things that are different. The more experience you gain, the more you’ll refine and heighten your sensitivity to joy. However, you don’t have to keep using the gift forever. If you try using the item and decide that it still doesn’t suit you, thank it for the joy it brought when you first received it – and bid it farewell. The true purpose of a present is to be received, because gifts are a means for conveying someone’s feelings for you. When viewed from this perspective, there is no need to feel guilty about parting with a gift that ultimately doesn’t spark joy.”

– Marie Kondo

I have been sooooo addicted to watching Tidying Up with Marie Kondo on Netflix (and finished all episodes in 1 week). The rituals she has, her methods and the things she says really makes me want to clean up everything in my home so much. But I have to wait for my new home to be ready before I can even do that. The most I can do now is clean up my closet.

I love how her show focuses on keeping shared living spaces neat and tidy. I honestly NEED my own space (it is currently shared with my partner in a room, and the rest of the house is with everyone else) and it’s so frustrating when you try to be neat and tidy, but someone else messes it up or keeps their designated area messy. Her show explains the importance of respecting one another’s space, and I don’t get enough of that at home.

I digress.

As per the topic of this post, I had the dilemma of figuring out what to do with gifts from all the Secret Santa sessions last Christmas. A lot of these gifts were not very useful to me or not to my taste, but I didn’t feel right just giving them away for nothing. So I really liked what Marie said about using them first to see if they spark joy, before thanking them and sending them either for donation or to the bin (in the case of makeup or hygiene related items).

I even tidied up my closet last night in an effort to be more mindful and give away anything I don’t use anymore. It felt so good! Now I just need to get more boxes and continue working on my space, bit by bit.

I’ve no idea how Marie finds all these perfectly sized boxes for use in drawers and such. I wish I have someone who can make these custom boxes for ALL my needs. Hahahaha. But honestly, all I’m utilising at the moment are shoe boxes and assorted gift and perfume boxes. Perhaps I need to start asking others for their unwanted boxes for my use.

Here are some good practices from Marie Kondo, done in the #KonMarie method that I follow:


Why? Because your socks are already stretched to tension while you’re wearing them, so whenever you’re not, they should be folded into a relaxed position and not continually stretched to tension in a ball while sitting in your closet. The solution? place them together and fold them into thirds and rest vertically in a box especially for socks. I employed an old Coach wallet box for this purpose.


I used to stack my clothes flat, into a tall stack. This makes finding the right clothing challenging and upon pulling one from the pile, I risk toppling it or pulling other clothes out along. Now? I fold them into rectangles (according to the box I’m using) and place them vertically like in a filing cabinet. This makes it easier to find things and to take them out without toppling anything.


Which item sparks joy? Which don’t anymore? This helps me get rid of things I don’t love (whether new or old) and keep the ones that really do spark joy. Most people toss things out by age, which results in more items being kept for ‘sentimental’ or emotional reasons. Marie’s spark joy method is instant, current and the only method you need. (Exception for special clothing or winter wear).


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