Wednesday, January 20, 2016

2016 Must-Read: Spark Joy by Marie Kondo

I haven’t conducted a survey to see what most people resolve to do in their New Year’s resolutions, but mine usually involve some sort of cleaning, decluttering or organizing.  I recently read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.  I have to say that I resisted reading it at first.  The thought that tidying could really change your life seems far-fetched.  But I saw several others who read it and literally raved about it, so I caved.  First, you should know what this book is not.  If you want someone to tell you how to store everything you’ve got in various boxes or totes, this is not the book for you.  If you’re looking for designer storage options, look elsewhere.  To follow Marie’s “KonMari” method of tidying, you have to get brutal with yourself and your belongings.  You will literally touch and hold every item that you own, and decide if it sparks joy in you.  If it does, keep it.  If it doesn’t, it has to go.  Now, I’ve read a lot of articles about decluttering and organizing, but this method is totally new to me—but I liked it!  The KonMari method is broken down into very specific categories, and they must be completed in a certain order.  I won’t tell you what it is, because you really need to buy the book!

I have only competed the first category, which included my closet and dresser so far, but it truly makes me feel happy to just look at my clothes.  However, as much as I loved The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, I was left with many questions at the end.  What kind of kitchen equipment should I keep?  How do I store my food?  How exactly do I fold these shirts?  What is best way to store my towels?  So when I saw that Marie has written a companion volume, I knew I had to have it! 

Spark Joy will answer any questions you may be left with after reading the first book.  It expands on the original principles of the KonMari method, but gives even more information, including illustrations about folding everything from sweatshirts to underwear.  There are tips about storing your makeup, toilet paper, kitchen appliances and everything in between.  It’s like a nerd’s guide to tidying!

I also feel like Marie fills in a lot of the blanks about what to do when you’re done discarding and your space feels a little sparse and empty.  She gives tips for decorating your new, tidier spaces using the things that you love.  She also tells you that it’s okay to keep some things that may not seem practical, but do bring you joy, giving tips for how to use those things you just don’t want to part with as part of your décor.  While her tastes won’t match everyone’s, I found a lot of her tips to be helpful.

Why it’s a must-read:

You may think, like I did, that tidying can’t truly be life-changing, but after reading these two books, I believe that it just might be.  Since reading about people who have tidied their homes and found happiness in a simpler life, I can really see how much clutter and truly un-joyful things I have in my home.  I think that keeping only those things you truly love and chucking the rest can be life-changing.

I think everyone can benefit from reading this book and becoming motivated to clear their clutter.  I think a lot of people want to tidy their homes and lives, a but really just don’t know where to start.  Marie will not only tell you how to start, but she’ll give a lot of tips and practical advice along the way.  It’s a great way to start not only a new year, but a new life chapter.  Life-Changing Magic and Spark Joy will only cost you a little over $20 when purchased on Amazon, so I highly recommend that you buy both of them.  If you’re truly dedicated to living a simpler, less-cluttered life, Marie can show you the way!

Happy Reading!


I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for this review.  All opinions are my own and a favorable review was not required.  Spark Joy is on sale now

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