Concord Public Library book of the week

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

Marie Kondo

2014, 213 pages

Nonfiction

KonMari tidying requires taking everything you own out of closets, drawers, and cupboards, choosing what to keep and designating a place for everything. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up is packed with detailed examples to help you prepare. Kondo notes, “In essence tidying ought to be the act of restoring the balance among people, their possessions, and the house they live in.” She says KonMari tidying will change the way you relate to things and will clarify “what you need in life, and what you don’t . . .” It sounds challenging, especially since she advises taking an “ikki ni” or “in one go” house-wide approach. This means tidying things most of us never look at, including documents and mementos.

Kondo describes how freeing it is to have only what’s important to you, all kept in its place. For example, living this way means never getting stressed out looking for something. And she notes that her clients find “life becomes far easier once you know that things will still work out even if you are lacking something.”

Which sounds like a “first world problem,” and it is. But she’s hit a real nerve, as the popularity of her book, a bestseller in several countries, can attest. The mind-shift Kondo describes is very appealing, “If we acknowledge our attachment to the past and our fears for the future by honestly looking at our possessions, we will be able to see what is really important to us.” An intriguing read.

Author: Keith Testa

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