Thursday, May 28, 2015

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

Have you read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo? My housemate came home with this book, which is funny because she and her boyfriend have a really tidy studio apartment. My husband and I both picked it up and gave it a quick read. As we read, we kept saying things like, "Yes! This is it!" and "Wow, I never thought of it that way," and "This makes so much sense!"

Kondo's book is the real deal. If you want to change the way you interact with your home, if you want to improve your relationships with the people you live with, if you want to feel more confident about your decisions or if you want to feel more joyful about who you are and how you live, then this little book is for you. It's sort of like coconut oil - you can use it for everything.

photo via

I love purging. As most of you know I'm in the process of re-tooling my wardrobe. This weekend, I had a closet sale and sold about half of my clothing, shoes and accessories. Then I donated another 20 percent. I have about 30 more pieces that are heading to a plus size consignment shop this week. I have successfully decreased the contents of my closet by 70 percent. How did I do this? By asking myself a really simple question: What do I really want to wear?

The most useful part of Kondo's book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, is this one mantra: Does it spark joy? This is the question you must ask yourself when trying to decide whether to keep or discard and item. What do I really want to wear? and Does it spark joy? are sort of the same question for me. Once I got real about which clothing items made me feel joyful, tossing stuff was easy. I still have a little work to do, but I'm feeling more confident that ever about my ability to simplify my closet.


Marsha Splenderosa said...

I am doing this right now. I try, seriously try, not to accumulate "stuff."
Stuff weighs you down, saps your strength, and takes forever to get rid of.
You are SO right !!!! xx's

Emily said...

I just did this at the end of the year before my big move. My new home is much more simple, clean lines, less stuff, and white walls. I feel like I can breathe better each time I walk through the door.

Anita Brown said...

I listened to this on an audio recording. Perhaps it was the reader, but I found myself saying "Really? You thought about this stuff when you were 5?" She was just so intense. I was a professional organizer at one point in my life, so I can take organizing to a spiritual high, but this was over the top, even for me. But there is something quite fulfilling when letting go of unnecessary stuff. It frees the mind to consider what's really important and, once we bring our spaces back to what we intend them to be, we are reinvigorated to cook, to create, to entertain, to love our havens.

Sarah Greenman said...

Anita, I agree. There are some really funny sections when she talks about childhood and her "passion for discarding". I sort of glossed over those sections (since I was reading the book directly) and moved on to the more actionable stuff, which is quite good. Thank you for your comments - I'm totally with you. There is a freeing feeling that comes of letting go of stuff stuff stuff.