The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo – Book Review

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

Author: Marie Kondo

Publisher: Ten Speed Press

Release date: October 14th, 2014

Pages: 226

Genre: Nonfiction, Self-Help

Rating: ★★★★

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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.

Why did I choose to read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up?

A glimpse into my private life: my boyfriend and I just bought our first house (!!!!). Of course, that means that in a few months, we will be moving. I know that our apartment is very cluttered, we’ve accumulated a lot of things over the past four years living there, but I’ve been pushing back the big tidying duty I need to do. No excuse, just pure laziness.

But now that I have a reason and a deadline, I really want to get started on decluttering our living quarters (and our lives). Which is why I decided to finally buy Marie Kondo’s book, although I’ve been eyeing it for a while. I was reluctant to buy it before because I didn’t think a book about tidying would be very interesting.

Boy, was I wrong.

What did I think of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up?

Never in a million years did I expect to enjoy reading a book about tidying so much! But I actually loved The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo!

Now, don’t get me wrong. This book is about so much more than cleaning your house. It’s about putting your whole life in order. The author says it best:

A dramatic reorganization of the home causes correspondingly dramatic changes in lifestyle and perspective. It is life transforming.

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up introduces you to the Konmari Method to declutter and tidy your home. The author claims that once you have successfully followed her guide to tidying, you will never revert to a messy and disorganized home.

The Konmari Method is simple and consists of two main steps: discard, then organize. The clutter in our homes is caused by the important number of things we own and have kept over the years. This method makes us look at every single thing we own, and ask ourselves, does this bring me joy? Do I want to bring it with me into the future?

This book was eye-opening on so many levels: it made me realize how much of my stuff I actually wear or use (or don’t), and how disorganized I truly was. You don’t realize that storing things away is, in fact, not very organized. It looks tidy for a while, but after a few years of storing things in bins, you just find yourself with a bunch of bins full of unused stuff. Truth be told, I was a pro of doing just that and calling it “tidying”.

Now, while this book inspired me to go through my stuff and discard, it was over the top at times. Marie Kondo’s criteria for keeping something is that it needs to spark joy for you. This criterion is a bit ridiculous and hard to feel. Still, looking at piles of my clothes, it was easy to discard pieces I didn’t like or wear anymore.

Now, for example, I own a few bras. Do my bras spark joy for me? No. Do I need and wear bras? Yes. So, I threw away old worn-out bras and kept the other ones.

The book is also quite repetitive at times. The word “tidying” is very overused.

All in all, this book was enjoyable and inspiring. I give it four stars! If you’re very motivated to do a big clean up of your house, or you’re simply looking to do an impressive spring cleaning, this book will definitely steer you in the right directions. The Konmari Method is very well thought of, and I think in the future, I will be using the tips I’ve learned for a very long time.

Have you read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo? What did you think? Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time!


Are you looking to tidy up your house and your life? Do you want to get started on your Spring Cleaning? Check out The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo! The author explains the Konmari Method to tidying up your living space, from your clothes to your sentimental items. This book was surprisingly captivating while being about a tedious chore. I gave it four stars!


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