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Decluttering and Discarding is an Art Form

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The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

Book Review: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

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My initial impression of the book, “the life-changing magic of tidying up”, was already quite positive. Usually when dealing with books I like to take time to hold and feel the pages, since this was an eBook, all I could do was hold my tablet and examine the cover image. I loved the simplicity of the cover and felt that if the eBook followed in a similar fashion I would also love the book.

The first thing I noticed was the impressive promise made by this digital delight, namely the words “life-changing magic”. Who doesn’t love magic, especially when it promises to be life-changing? Another thing that caught my attention is categorising decluttering and tidying as a “Japanese Art”. Now to make my review transparent, I will say I do love Japan, and all things Japanese. So this eBook was off to a fantastic start.

For me, I enjoyed reading the book in its entirety first before any action. I like to know what I’m getting into before I commit whole-heartedly into any exercise. So, I plan to action the steps on my second reading, and make the tidying process “special”.

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Why I liked Marie Kondo’s book

In fact it’s also why I liked Marie
From the beginning she makes the point that being tidy is a mind-set. Even during the couple of days after reading the book I noticed myself being compelled to return items to their place straight after their use, one of the principles of her method, KonMari.
To the point
The chapters are brief and the instructions are clear, the bold text highlight important points.
It works!
Marie makes comparisons with other tidying methods and gives her opinion on why these methods do not work. She states that, while the other methods aren't without merit, why her method works where others may fail. She knows it works!
As a kid
I love that she has been passionate about tidying ever since she was 5 years old. I find that incredible, and can almost imagine her as a child pouring over every magazine and book she could hold with her tiny hands.
Treating the items and your house personally. I really appreciated the way she spoke of our owned objects as having a purpose, almost personality and showing them gratitude. I am a gratitude junkie and since reading her book I’ve been mindful to greet my house and thank my shoes and socks - especially after my workouts.

What I was left wondering

She likes using the word “discard”. To me, discarding seems so abrupt, and so I often imagined the word “donate” being used instead. Even in my mind I found it hard to let go of my things. The reasoning behind them was because I could potentially sell them. It was a hard hurdle for me to cross and I hoped that Marie would mention this dilemma in her book, this was not the case. As of writing this review I am still not I sure whether I am discarding, donating or sell. All I know is I am going to sort with gusto.
Spark joy?
“Spark joy”. I must admit I am a bit sceptical on how this will work. I do like the concept; I’m just not sure how reliable I will be with this, especially with my very loud mind mutter going on while I make my decisions.
My mum raised me as a folder. I remember spending hours folding my clothes only to find them in a mess when I couldn’t locate a desired piece of clothing. When I think of folding, I think of time wasted. At the moment I have a system which does not involve folding, and it is working well for me. I am willing to give the KonMari version of folding a go and who knows, it might prove meditative and redeem my jaded folding past.

Overall I really enjoyed reading the eBook and will need to update you all on the results once I make a magic tidying date with myself. I’m actually super excited about the KonMari version of tidying (and that says a lot because I love organising, sorting and filing).

Marie Kondo's eBook was provided for free by Blogging for Books, a program of from The Crown Publishing Group, in exchange for my honest review.

What tidying tips and tricks do you swear by?

Jen Aboki
Jen Aboki
Founder of Maker of art, former speech pathologist, and mum of one. Her designs promote wellbeing and embrace playfulness. She hopes her creations will sprinkle a little fun and happiness into the world.

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