This book has gotten a ton of publicity already, and initially I was hesitant to even read it. It sounded so … hokey I guess. Really, tidying is life-changing magic? Thanking my belongings for their service?
And then I read it, because I need help. I am not a tidy person, and I hate that I’m not. I hate that I hesitate to invite anyone over to my house, fearing their judgment and scorn. We have clutter and stuff scattered, and while I’ve always had a tendency towards it, having children has made it oh so much worse. Toys, papers, just stuff.
Kondo’s book has a soft and gentle tone that was refreshing and soothing (unlike other books of the sort that can seem scolding.) Her emphasis is on discarding, yes, but her guideline of basing it on what sparks joy in you was so different. I’ve read other decluttering and organizing books, with their suggestions to toss anything you haven’t used in a year. Except … what if I’ve had good reasons to not use something in a year?
Is her approach really that revolutionary? William Morris’ famous quote about having nothing that you don’t know to be beautiful or useful would seem to be pretty similar, and yet the focus she puts on the item bringing joy was different enough for it to connect with me in a different way. Or else it just hit me at the right time. Or else it’s that I have items that aren’t beautiful, and yet they do bring me joy. Or some combination of the three. 🙂
In the middle of reading the book I pulled out all my pajamas and discarded half of them. No joy. After another chapter, I tackled my sweaters. Only one got discarded – I love all the others, even if I haven’t worn them in ages. They’re not a good style and fit for pregnancy and nursing, so they’re still having to wait. Maybe next winter? Refolding them and storing them in her prescribed method has them fitting easily in one drawer, when before they were squeezed into one and a half.
It’s too soon to say if this is a lightning bolt that will permanently change my life, but I’m feeling optimistic, and inspired. Reason enough to be grateful that I read the book, and to recommend it to others.
This #1 New York Times best-selling guide to decluttering your home from Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes readers step-by-step through her revolutionary KonMari Method for simplifying, organizing, and storing.
Despite constant efforts to declutter your home, do papers still accumulate like snowdrifts and clothes pile up like a tangled mess of noodles?
Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes tidying to a whole new level, promising that if you properly simplify and organize your home once, you’ll never have to do it again. Most methods advocate a room-by-room or little-by-little approach, which doom you to pick away at your piles of stuff forever. The KonMari Method, with its revolutionary category-by-category system, leads to lasting results. In fact, none of Kondo’s clients have lapsed (and she still has a three-month waiting list).
With detailed guidance for determining which items in your house “spark joy” (and which don’t), this international bestseller featuring Tokyo’s newest lifestyle phenomenon will help you clear your clutter and enjoy the unique magic of a tidy home—and the calm, motivated mindset it can inspire.
Title: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing
Author: Marie Kondo
Category: Nonfiction / Organization
My Rating: 4 Stars
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!