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

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Helpful Score: 3


Wait, you know haters are gonna hate, but why are so many people loving this book. I listened to it, and my first thought is that the author seems kinda like she might fit a DSM-5 Diagnostic Classification for mental health issues. I mean she has been obsessed since the age of 5 with decluttering and organizing.

She said kooky things about how your possession might feel, and that if you let them go they will return to you in another form. Thank your items one by one and then discard them. Only keep the things that bring you joy. (which is great advice)

Here is the part that I think is gonna be the sinker for all of us on PBS. She said that she had met people who often have 3 books to be read hanging around. And some have up to 30 books. She even mention one client that had 3 bookcases. Gasp 3 bookcases of books. She also wants you to store your book cases in your closest. Plus get this. Why not just rip the pages out of the books you feel are keepers and just keep the pages? she suggests. Gasp. rip up a good book?

The audio set has 4 Cds, and the last talks about feng shui. I sure wish she had started with this, as it explains that there is this idea that all items have a life force and energy. I would not have thought she was so off her rocker if she had told me of this whole idea instead of suggesting I think about my possessions feelings, and that these items might feel unneeded, wanted to be released and needed to rest.

The last part of the book she talks about how she did a great deal of tidying in order to gain her parents approval and that she never really did relate to people very well. Gee, I was right on target that she might have has some relationship or mental health issues.

Overall she just wants you to discard everything you dont love, as it just causes stress. Everything! Dont save stuff for someday. Dont save manuals for your washing machine, dont store info or data that you could find say online, if you were ever ever ever to actually need. But use shoe boxes as containers for things you need to store in drawers or cabinets. Plus no stacking; you must fold your clothes in a certain way and do vertical rows. Folding is fun she tells us.

If you dont have time to read or listen to this book, just go throw things away.