As the winner of an Ebay contest, I had the pleasure of asking Marie Kondo personal questions.She is the bestselling author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.

VM: I have a hard time understanding what brings me joy when dealing with sentimental and keepsake items. What do you do when it causes a whirlwind of emotions?

MK:  Even though all of your sentimental items will be together in one room, you can still manage to divide each item with the other items of the same kind: photos with photos, keepsake items with other keepsake items, videos with videos, etc. When you are comparing items of the one kind with other items of the same kind, you will notice that your body responds differently. Because these are sentimental items and they all provoke some sort of response, it will not be the same as perhaps the other categories, but you will notice a DIFFERENCE in the way your body responds when you touch a photo that you want to keep from a photo that you don’t want to keep, and so will discard.

So if you have twenty photos of a family vacation to New York City or the Grand Canyon, you decide you will only keep 2 or 3, and compare these photos against each other, and keep the 2 or 3 that provoke the most significant reaction in your body. Don’t worry if you can’t keep it to 2 or 3, 4 or 5 will be OK.   Don’t worry yet about where you will put them, but when you do get to the organizing stage (which will be when ALL sentimental items are reviewed), make sure you put the photos together in an album or a place where you can find them if you want to.

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