The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up

The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up

I've just finished reading a very thought provoking book by Marie Kondo called:

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing

If you read only one non-fiction book this summer, make it this book. I promise, you will never look at cleaning your house the same way again. This is a small book, less than 200 pages, a quick read and a real page-turner. I could not put the book down. I know, that does sound impossible, a book whose title would lead you to believe that this is yet another book about how to "get organized". It is. But on a very unexpected, almost spiritual level.

I know that I feel so much more at ease in a room when I am not surrounded by clutter, yet it piles up again and again until it overwhelms me and then I declutter. But since reading this book, I now realize that much of my decluttering is really just shifting stuff around, reorganizing the clutter. After reading this book, I know I have not decluttered my life for years. Decades.

The obvious question is why worry about clutter? We're busy people, right? Isn't clutter just part of the minutia of life? Here's why: whether you realize it or not, clutter manifests itself as stress. Stress robs us of our beauty.

The author makes the argument for why and how clutter allows us to procrastinate, feel stressed, feel rushed, feel overwhelmed, feel unhappy and is over-all just not healthy for us. Clutter can and in my case is, an excuse for not doing the work. For not facing the ghosts and demons.

What sets this book worlds apart from other books about getting organized? Marie lays out a very specific plan and is adamant about how to remove the clutter. She insists that we are not to clear clutter the conventional way we have been taught to do it, by location, one room at a time, we are to do it one category at a time, and in this exact order:
1) Clothes
2) Books
3) Papers
4) Komono (miscellany)

5) Things with sentimental value

In each category we must first discard before we begin to tidy up. She has an interesting way of teaching us how to discard and I am going to save that as a surprise for you.

I have plotted the categories and ritual of tidying up on my calendar and I plan to start her method next week. I feel a little bit anxious about it because of the volume and nature of clutter that I have tucked into all of the tucking places in my home. I expect this task to take me about 2 weeks to complete.

Have you read the book?  Or done the method? I'd love to hear what you think.

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Neen … sister, you are going to need to a bottle of wine to get through that book and a case of wine to get through that closet. That closet is legendary. LOL. XO

Lisa @C9SC

Danielle, I totally relate to that. I was just commenting over on facebook how I still have my maternity clothes and my baby turned 16 this week! The one that is going to put me over the top is paperwork, and then sentimental stuff. She makes us save that for last, supposedly after all the other sorting and tossing, it makes this final part easier. I have saved scraps of paper and old love letters from high school …

Lisa @C9SC

Organizing my closet and storage room has been my sad, frustrated mantra since the day you met me… 15 years ago! Even with all of the moves, I just shifted and re-shifted the clutter! Heading out to get this book and starting immediately! XO Neen

Jeannine Chatham

Yes! I love this book! It has changed how I handle all my things, but especially my clothes. Before, I had a huge pile of clothes and I couldn’t even shut my closet. Now, everything is in its place. I never thought I would be happy to keep my closet tidy, but here I am. So tidy!
Now, I gotta move on to the kitchen…


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