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The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up Review (Part 2)

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

If you missed Part 1 of this review, read it here.

So, I fully expected that I wouldn’t like part 2 of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up as much as I liked part 1. But folks, I actually think I liked this section even better!

Visualize your destination.

This section starts off by encouraging you to really step back and examine why and what. Why do you want to have more organization in your life (“Before you start tidying, look at the lifestyle you aspire to and ask yourself, ‘Why do I want to tidy?'”) and what does a tidy home and life look like to you.

Ask: Does it spark joy?

This question really got me to thinking. The author says: “We should be choosing what we want to keep, not what we want to get rid of.”

I actually spent a little time looking at the #KonMari hashtag on Instagram today and was so inspired by some of the beautiful spaces I saw there. You know that I’m usually more of a utilitarian sort of person, however, I was really motivated by and drawn to the clean and welcoming pictures I saw on that stream.

It made me want to look for ways to make the spaces in our home more inviting. I don’t know what that means exactly or what that looks like, but I’m going to start doing a better job of paying attention to what types of colors and patterns and fabrics I’m drawn to and to see what happens when I sprinkle these types of things in our every day spaces.

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

Always think in terms of category, not place.

As I mentioned yesterday, the Marie encourages you to go through your home by category, not by location. She suggests getting out all the items in that category, putting them in one place, and handling each item asking yourself, “Does this spark joy?”

She says to tackle clothes first, then books, papers, miscellany, and lastly, mementos. I’m planning to try this out with some items in our home in the next few days to see how it goes!


Here are two quotes that were too thought-provoking not to share:

  • “The urge to point out someone else’s failure to tidy is usually a sign that you are neglecting to take care of your own space.”
  • “To truly cherish the things that are important to you, you must first discard those that have outlived their purpose.”

Did you read this section along with me today? If so, I’d love to hear your thoughts on it — or your thoughts on what I shared above. Do you agree or disagree?

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  • Christina L. says:

    I’m reading along with you and when I got to this section I was prepared to think she was a kook, but like you, I actually found it really interesting. The mindset of “What do I wish to keep?” vs “OK What should I get rid of?” was really an aha moment.

  • LeahB says:

    I’m reading this book right now also, and I’m loving it. Today, I dumped every scarf and cardigan sweater I own onto the floor, picked up each one, and put my (few) favorites back in the closet. I’m learning to let go of the guilt that someone else bought me an item, or I spent good money on it, so I “should” keep it. Whatever. So far, this book has been very liberating!

  • Michelle says:

    “We should be choosing what we want to keep, not what we want to get rid of.” This quote stuck out to me, as well. I just started reading this book today, and am determined to start focusing on the things that bring me joy instead of just trying to find more things to get rid of.

  • Charlotte Edwards says:

    Whoa! I missed the sentence about pointing out someone else’s failure to tidy being a reflection of your own. 🙁 I just sent my sister a message about the book and how our mom needs a copy. I did fully disclose my own need for it and am headed to take out all the clothes so I can sort during nap time/school lunch break.

  • Ellen says:

    Crystal, after you’ve thought a little more about the colors and patterns you like, you should invite The Nester to do a frugal decorating series with you!! She has a great eye for decorating and seems to do it all very reasonably.

  • Kim says:

    I am reading this book right now, and I love it.

  • Amanda L says:

    I have this book in my amazon cart, waiting for my Swagbucks gift card code to be e-mailed. I have always wanted a more tidy house, but there is something lacking. I’m hoping her perspective and method can get me on the right track! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  • Susan in St. Louis says:

    When I read the book I missed that comment about noticing others’ need to tidy being a sign something is amiss in my own home. Ouch! Having recently returned from visiting a home in need of serious purging (and my own critical spirit about it), this is SUCH a good point. I have returned home and seen with new eyes the purging/tidying I need to do. This is where my focus should be – not on someone else’s mess.

  • Lesley says:

    I’m am not reading this book but I have read some excerpts from it and I think she has some great ideas and valid points. I do purge my own things periodically and as I am not much of a shopper, it takes me several years to get to the point where I need to purge again. But I have a husband and three teenage daughters. How do I get them on board? My husband wants to keep everything! (For example, the rusty, dusty rowing machine that he has had for 25+ years that I have never seen him use, not once! When I ask him about it, the response is always, “It’s mine!”) Ugh.

    • Elizabeth says:

      My husband is exactly the same. He will fight tooth and nail to not throw anything away, no matter how old and decrepit it may be. This is what I tell people (and thereby remind myself) “he keeps everything he has no matter how old and decrepit, which bodes well for me when I am old and decrepit, he won’t be eager to get rid of me either”.

  • Amanda Snodgrass says:

    I’m reading this book now (Target impulse buy), and I have gotten rid of So. Many. Clothes. Thank goodness the kids are going back to school tomorrow! I’ve stopped reading so far so I can declutter as I go along. She did sound kind of kooky in how she talks to her clothing (thank you for keeping me warm today, jacket) but at the same time, I obviously don’t appreciate my stuff since I have so much of it.

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