The Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up

the life-changing magic of tidying up
I just finished reading this wonderful little book and am so excited about it, I wanted to share! The life-changing magic of tidying up, was really an encouragement to me.
Marie Kondo found an interest in cleaning and organizing from the time she was very young. She went on to start her own consulting business, where she has a 100% (!!) success rate of clients that continue to keep a clean and organized home.
There is so much invaluable information packed in, I completely fell in love with her style.
Don’t play pass the clutter.
One thing that really struck me was her stance on giving things to family members. I have seen it time and time again, where someone comes to an item that they feel guilty about letting go- for various reasons. So they find a family member to pass off these “useful” items to. Feeling better, the original owner can now move on to complete their decluttering, but the poor person that ended up with said item, now is left with more clutter of their own.
Marie recommends bagging up all the discarded items and removing it before family members know what you are doing. It’s not that you are purposely being rude, but when items get “rescued” from theses piles, they don’t actually get rescued- they instead become someone elses clutter. More clutter brings more stress. We don’t want to put more stress on our loved ones.
With the KonMari method that Marie has developed, she has her clients sort through all their belongings within 6 months. Sorting and only keeping items that spark joy in your life, by the end of 6 months the transformation will be so profound and emotional, you will do whatever you can to keep it.
It’s true- beautiful areas breed more beautiful areas.
Everything has a purpose.
Have you ever been out shopping, find an awesome deal on an outfit, only to have it hang in your closet and never get worn? It happens, and it happens a lot. Most are unwilling to part with the articles of clothing because they spent time, space and money on them and didn’t get any use out of it.
I loved how Marie views these items: It has already fulfilled it’s purpose in your life- either from giving you that excitement when you first purchased it, or that it has taught you what doesn’t suit you. That article of clothing has already completed its role in your life, and you are free to let it go.
Sort by category.
This. Is. Brilliant. Think about it- when one decides to declutter the kitchen, where are all the coffee mugs? If you go around the room decluttering one cupboard at a time, you may declutter mugs flife changing magicrom 3 different cupboards- and there is a good chance that some will be overlooked- possibly in some drawers, closets, office (pen holders, anyone?) and maybe even stuffed in a box in the garage. And of course you will keep more than necessary because you’re only looking at a part of your collection at a time.
When sorting by category you bring all the mugs that you own and sort them- keeping only the ones that you love. And then you have the freedom to organize what is left, knowing you will use and enjoy the mugs you have kept.
This book really moved me. I loved what she taught and think that everyone who wants to change their life through purging the clutter- should definitely invest the few hours it takes to read it. We all have something that needs to be done in this life, a purpose we were created with. Clearing out the clutter means we have the freedom to go and do, we are no longer held captive by the bonds of material goods. It really is the life-changing magic of tidying up.

About Rachel Jones

Hi there! I’m Rachel Jones, and I founded Nourishing Minimalism in 2012 at the beginning of my minimalist journey. If you're looking for encouragement in your journey, I go live in my FREE Facebook Groups every weekday- feel free to join me there: Nourishing Minimalism Facebook Group


  1. Anna @Green Talk on January 26, 2015 at 11:13 pm

    I am de-cluttering like crazy. I guess I reached my limit on clutter. I feel so good when stuff is out of my house that I no longer need. I donate it or sell it to someone who wants it.

  2. Cheryl McInerney on January 26, 2015 at 11:16 pm

    I too just finished this book and found it quite encouraging. I can’t wait to start on my craft room!

  3. Tiare on January 27, 2015 at 2:24 pm

    Spot on tips and thanks for the book recommendation. Tidying up is magical! That’s what I tell my children. ; ) I need to make sign that says “Don’t Pass the Clutter” and give it to my dear friends (and grandmas) who love to give us things that really, they just don’t want to keep but don’t throw away .

  4. Christina @ Embracing Simple on January 27, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    Wow she has a 100% success rate with her clients continuing to keep their homes clean and organized? I would say that’s pretty darn good, hah! Thanks for the review, I’m looking for more books to read this year and this one looks right up my ally.

  5. Stephani on January 31, 2015 at 11:48 am

    I read this book recently as well and it really gave me a great perspective on decluttering. I’ve made great progress in our home…now if I could only get my children to see that the KonMari method works well! My oldest is a “keeper” for sure…and her cluttered room reflects that! 😉

  6. Cheryl on February 2, 2015 at 11:17 pm

    I just read this book at the beginning of January, and I started to implement some of her ideas. I used her method with my clothing and my books and papers. Because I homeschool, I ended up keeping quite a few books that don’t bring me joy but I think we will use. I did get rid of over 3 boxes though. Then I went through the other categories and today I worked on my kitchen. I am finding that I do feel joy with some of the newer items in my kitchen that I’ve gotten in the past couple of years as gifts. However, many of my kitchen tools are old and need to be replaced if I am to feel a spark of joy when I hold them. So I’d love to hear about your experience if you try working her method in your home. And do you think her idea of discarding what does not bring you joy is practical for a large family? It is different from the typical minimalist standard of keeping what we use and what is necessary. It may not be frugal, which is probably not one of her goals. Anyway, these are some of my thoughts after my kitchen experience today. I hope you will write some posts on using the KonMari Method. I can definitely say that her book has motivated me to let go of another layer of stuff.

  7. Karen T. on February 3, 2015 at 6:39 am

    Loved this book too! Rachel, you did a great job summarizing some of Kondo’s main points, especially about decluttering by category. So, so important and definitely an eye opener. Her comment that “storage experts are hoarders” is something I never considered before, but she’s absolutely right! Working to declutter all of those “storage solutions” now that I don’t have so much stuff to store!

  8. Cathy on February 8, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    Thanks for your encouragement.
    I am only at the beginning of my journey, so haven’t even begun to touch my ‘real’ belongings yet, but just the surface clutter that has mounted up over the years. Until the house is ‘tidy’ I can’t begin to start on the bookcases and boxes of old toys etc. But I feel better, and every time another box goes to the charity shop, I feel even more positive.
    There are 6 of us in our family, so over the years we have accumulated lots of ‘stuff’ and we are guilty of passing stuff on all the time.
    I have had various people wanting books to send abroad, but I don’t want them hanging around the house, so I’m trying to get rid of stuff as quickly as possible. At least with charity shops it’s gone quickly and other people can choose whether to buy it or not.
    Thanks again!

  9. Loretta on February 20, 2015 at 2:52 am

    I have recently read Marie Kondo’s book as well. I really like her way of looking at things. And from what I’ve read so far from your blog, I understand how your method also reflects real changes from simplifying and paring down to what you really love, rather than organizing your “stuff”.
    I am also learning and working on things in our own home. I will be back to read more and hope that you continue inspiring others to do the same.
    Come on over to my blog: and enjoy hearing a bit of my journey.

  10. Angela @ Setting My Intention on May 18, 2015 at 10:11 pm

    I just did my clothes using the KonMari Method. Not sure I’m completely sure about what sparks joy for me, but it did help me edit down – and my hubby did his clothes with me too. I’m blogging about the edit – part 2 – now!

    • Rachel on May 19, 2015 at 2:29 pm

      That’s great Angela. If you’re unsure, then you could probably let go of quite a lot. Just keep editing down, eventually you will figure out what sparks joy.

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