Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Thoughts on 'Spark Joy'

I recently read a review of Spark Joy that said it was better than the first book, but I saw it as a more detailed companion version. Many of the same methods Marie Kondo introduces in "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" are repeated and explained more thoroughly. Also, it has cute little illustrations throughout to show you her methods. She reassure readers of the first book that it's perfectly normal for your home to get messy while you are tidying; it's part of the process. Also, it's important that you finish discarding before trying to find a home for each of your things. She explains how to store things by category, making it easy to skip that section if you don't have those items. Reading her book reminded me that parts of our home such as my office don't have to be purely functional. They should bring us joy. The most profound lesson I learned, though, was this: If you're anxious all the time, try putting your things in order.

More of her suggestions and my thoughts on each:

  • Cleaning is not the same as tidying. You must finish tidying before you clean, such as at spring cleaning time. This makes complete sense, because cleaning needs to be done regularly and finding a home for things should only have to be done once.
  • Make a personal space in your home with only things you love to increase your enjoyment. I try to do this with our entire apartment, but especially my office.
  • Discard empty boxes immediately. I agree with this because I don't want to be tempted to fill them up. They waste space.
  • Store by materials. I'm not sure exactly how I feel about this in practice, but it makes sense the way she describes it.
  • Drawers should look full but not stuffed. Yes!
  • Play the word association game when figuring out where to store things. Again, it makes sense.
  • Fold properly. She shows how to fold cardigans, jackets and turtlenecks, but I wouldn't fold them at all; I would hang them. (She says this is OK.) I also don't see myself folding underwear.
  • Store bras properly. She shares that after tidying bra drawers many people discard ones and purchase much prettier ones, and I could definitely see that happening. I already want to replace plain bras with cuter ones.
  • Examine your books. She explains that words "make our reality" so we should only keep books that align with the life we want to live. I kept books on yoga, travel and journaling and books by my favorite people (Amy Poehler, Tina Fey, Mindy Kaling, Walter Cronkite). 

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