reviewed The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo (The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, #1)

Marie Kondo: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up (Hardcover, 2014, Ten Speed Press) 3 stars

Despite constant efforts to declutter your home, do papers still accumulate like snowdrifts and clothes …

Review of 'The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up' on 'Goodreads'

1 star

I have one or more friends currently reading/planning to read it; so, I finally had to know what the hype was about. I've been yelling at the book throughout.

I was in professional organizing and productivity training for 7 years. I've read a broad range of authors on the subject, participated in professional development, belonged to NAPO, and practiced in many homes and businesses.

Here are a few thoughts:

There is nothing ground-breaking or new in the book. Most of the book is the same thought or two repeated over and over. It's tedious, at best.

Also, the fact that she's been tidying over half her life isn't all that impressive, as she keeps insisting that she started when she was 5 years old. Give me a break! As far as I can tell, she is a single woman, living alone. If I lived alone, my house would look different (and be a whole lot more peaceful), too. [See below, if you desire elaboration.]

Getting rid of (discretionary) items that don't bring you joy has been the standard for years.

The author of this book dictates that the discarding work should be done all at once; but many seem to have missed the part where she said it could take 6 months.

The thanking every item for its service before discarding it or putting it away for the day is obnoxious. I don't believe that my socks have hurt feelings. Neither am I willing to dismantle existing photo albums to hold each individual photo in my hands to see if it sparks joy. She writes as if we all still get incredible numbers of photographs printed. I haven't printed envelopes full of images since digital cameras came out (over 10 years ago). I print as I need.

only thing I might consider trying is standing my folded clothes in the drawer so I can see all of them. Again, though, this is not new or exclusive to her--I've read that tip several times long before she came on the scene.

I can't begin to understand why this book is all the rage. Mostly, reading this book makes me want to stab someone, which is as far from my character as can be.

As a postscript to my comment above about how my house would be different if I were single and living alone: I strive for the public areas of the house to be company-ready at all times (both because I like to host my people, and because I prefer that level of neatness on a daily basis, and I spend more time in the house than anyone). We have a bit of a daily battle with the foyer, kitchen, and basement--the rooms that some number of us use daily. But, the rest of the common areas are generally in excellent shape. As far as private areas, my only requirement is that they be safe and healthful. That my roommates don't share my neatness preferences in their private spaces is up to them.

Too, people shouldn't worry about situational disorganization (e.g. at times of illness, death in the family, and other big life changes). If we have an environment that generally suits us well, we can return to that when life returns to normal.