I picked up ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying’ from Waterstones a few weeks ago after having heard a few bloggers talk about it.
In general I think of myself as a fairly organised person and I like things to be tidy – note that I didn’t say that things were ever actually tidy. This book gave me a totally different idea of tidy. The author has invented a fairly extreme method for tidying that involves you taking every item you own in your hands and only keeping those which spark joy. It sounds like a wonderful idea, I love the idea of only having items which make me truly happy and I can think of so many things that I’d be happy to get rid of and I have! So far I’ve thrown away 4 bags of things I don’t want any more and we have some things to donate too. It’s very liberating to reduce your belongings and I find it helps me focus on things really care about.
There are some elements of the book which don’t speak to me as much, for example, the author suggests communicating with your belongings: thanking them for all they have done for you. This isn’t something that I feel I need to do, however I did try to acknowedge every item and made the effort to be aware that even though I didn’t want it any more I was grateful for the item and that getting rid of it doesn’t mean I think it’s useless or worthless.
I strongly agree with her idea that even gifts that were not really wanted have still brought joy, and have still served a purpose. Their purpose was to be gifted, the giver felt the joy of giving. If you receive a gift with a positive outlook and consider the thought that went into the purchasing or making of the gift rather than whether you like it or not the receiver can still benefit from the joy of receiving: of knowing someone cared and was thinking of them.
I don’t think I’ll ever get to a point where I only have items that bring joy or to a point where everything has a definite place, but then I actually enjoy sorting and reorganising. Reducing my stuff has cleared my mind and I find myself spending more time doing the things I love. The book was a joy to read and it’s something that I will definitely be keeping in my home.