The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

I haven’t posted about anything I’ve read this year because none of the books moved me enough to write about them. Well, 2015 is almost over but I just finished a book I need to write about.

 With a title like that, the book better deliver, and for me, it did. Marie Kondo’s decluttering philosophy is based on a simple question–“does this bring me joy?” If it does, keep it, organize it, and cherish it. If it does not, thank it for serving its purpose and send it on to the next stage of its journey through life. 

 Determining when possessions have already served their purpose in your life has helped me tremendously. I’m a big sentimental keeper of things; unable to part with something based on who gave it to me or where I was when I got it. More relevant to my life right now, I tend to hang on to shirts I’ve gotten from running races.

 This shirt is nice enough, and sure, I loved the race, but does this shirt bring me joy? Any hesitation in my mind means the answer is no. So I thanked the shirt for bringing me joy when I picked up my race packet and put it in the discard pile, off to continue its journey.

Kondo encourages a dialogue between you and your possessions; thanking them for what they’ve done for you and in the case of items like shoes and socks, how hard they work each day. This unusual method might put some people off but as someone who apologizes when I bump into inanimate objects, talking to my clothes is not a problem for me. The point is to truly appreciate what you have and build a personal connection with it. You may have fewer things when you’re done with her discarding process but you’re going to truly love them. 

 The discard process as she describes it involves collecting all your clothes, putting them on the floor, and looking at them at one time. I wasn’t about to make a giant pile on our small, dog hair filled floors so I instead opted for one drawer of clothes at a time on the bed.

Here’s a drawer I keep running/athletic stuff in before the process:

During the process:

And after:

Looking at the last photo is literally bringing me joy right now. It’s so tidy! I can see everything in that drawer thanks to the KonMari folding method.   Watch this; it’s life changing.

Here’s another drawer; the place I store my exercise tops. I still have quite a few items but I do believe they all bring me joy. Plus now I can more easily access them.    

Our dog Leonard wasn’t much help but he brings me joy so he stays. ๐Ÿ™‚  

  I didn’t think I had a huge wardrobe to begin with but after sorting through four drawers and my closet I was able to discard four bags of clothes. 

Bye gang! Thank you for teaching me what doesn’t suit me and I hope you enjoy bringing joy to someone who finds you at Goodwill.


The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up has made it so much simpler for me to decide what I keep and what I will purchase going forward. By only surrounding myself with things that bring me joy there will be plenty of room in my living space to pursue other interests, unobstructed by clutter. 


9 responses to “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

  1. Thank you for inspiring me to read that book, Nora and perhaps to clean out my clothes, which I really need to do. The folded items in the drawer look great! My sock drawer could take a redo also.

  2. This is a very good commentary on the book! I can say that, since I too have been motivated by it. Nice pictures too!

  3. You have inspired me to read this book, Nora, and to look at her videos. By the way, I also apologize to inanimate objects when I bump into them! I think it’s an automatic reflex. Nicely written piece. ๐Ÿ™‚ A.

  4. I have this book and really need to read it. I so need to clean out crap.

  5. I’ve read so many positive reviews of thsi book that it’s now top of my wish list. I’ve done what I can with decluttering, but think I need a bit of a push. I had so many race t-shirts that I never wore (mostly non-technical ones) but I struggled to let go of them, so I’ve asked my mum to make me a quilt with them, which I guess is cheating a bit!

    • I held onto race t shirts for years thinking I’d get them made into a quilt (or learn how to do it myself-ha!). And actually I still have shirts from high school upstairs that I haven’t yet sorted. I try to remind myself that I can just refer to my race photos for memories, and those take up far less space!

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