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The Art of Discarding: How to Get Rid of Clutter and Find Joy

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The book that inspired Marie Kondo's The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Nagisa Tatsumi's international bestseller offers a practical plan to figure out what to keep and what to discard so you can get--and stay--tidy, once and for all. Practical and inspiring, The Art of Discarding (the book that originally inspired a young Marie Kondo to start cleaning up her closets) The book that inspired Marie Kondo's The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Nagisa Tatsumi's international bestseller offers a practical plan to figure out what to keep and what to discard so you can get--and stay--tidy, once and for all. Practical and inspiring, The Art of Discarding (the book that originally inspired a young Marie Kondo to start cleaning up her closets) offers hands-on advice and easy-to-follow guidelines to help readers learn how to finally let go of stuff that is holding them back -- as well as sage advice on acquiring less in the first place. Author Nagisa Tatsumi urges us to reflect on our attitude to possessing things and to have the courage and conviction to get rid of all the stuff we really don't need, offering advice on how to tackle the things that pile up at home and take back control. By learning the art of discarding you will gain space, free yourself from "accumulation syndrome," and find new joy and purpose in your clutter-free life.


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The book that inspired Marie Kondo's The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Nagisa Tatsumi's international bestseller offers a practical plan to figure out what to keep and what to discard so you can get--and stay--tidy, once and for all. Practical and inspiring, The Art of Discarding (the book that originally inspired a young Marie Kondo to start cleaning up her closets) The book that inspired Marie Kondo's The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Nagisa Tatsumi's international bestseller offers a practical plan to figure out what to keep and what to discard so you can get--and stay--tidy, once and for all. Practical and inspiring, The Art of Discarding (the book that originally inspired a young Marie Kondo to start cleaning up her closets) offers hands-on advice and easy-to-follow guidelines to help readers learn how to finally let go of stuff that is holding them back -- as well as sage advice on acquiring less in the first place. Author Nagisa Tatsumi urges us to reflect on our attitude to possessing things and to have the courage and conviction to get rid of all the stuff we really don't need, offering advice on how to tackle the things that pile up at home and take back control. By learning the art of discarding you will gain space, free yourself from "accumulation syndrome," and find new joy and purpose in your clutter-free life.

30 review for The Art of Discarding: How to Get Rid of Clutter and Find Joy

  1. 5 out of 5

    Ranay G

    She lost me when she placed no value in books or photos.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Advertised as "The book that inspired Marie Kondo's The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up". Which says a lot. Kondo's book was fine. I did not love it and I don't think it's sooooo special, but it was fine. But this one is a bit boring to read, and although it tries to be practical it was not actually helpful for me. The author keeps repeating "discard it, discard it ALL, discard no matter what!" and at certain point it gets annoying. I specially disliked her insistence on discarding things such a Advertised as "The book that inspired Marie Kondo's The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up". Which says a lot. Kondo's book was fine. I did not love it and I don't think it's sooooo special, but it was fine. But this one is a bit boring to read, and although it tries to be practical it was not actually helpful for me. The author keeps repeating "discard it, discard it ALL, discard no matter what!" and at certain point it gets annoying. I specially disliked her insistence on discarding things such as paperwork without worrying a bit (a topic which would require caution imho). As a general rule I agree with the main idea but the exposition was poor. Even so I found two paragraphs which made me wonder if her pupil Marie Kondo keeps loving this book so much now that she is world-famous: "Experts in storage and organization are generally people who enjoy such things. [···] You character is different to theirs. So however much you try to follow their methods, you're bound to fail at some stage." "But I think it is best not to suppose we can easily introduce a different lifestyle from a foreign country." And I certainly agree with Nagisa Tatsumi on this.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Kitzel

    The book manages to be both dated and very relevant. If you're tired of all the sorting gurus, this may be the right book for you. It tells you exactly where you and everyone else goes wrong in the practice of tidying up and throwing away. So yes, please read the book, take out whatever you need, and then throw it out. The 2000s had their floppy disks and that's the one thing I don't have any trouble with. The book manages to be both dated and very relevant. If you're tired of all the sorting gurus, this may be the right book for you. It tells you exactly where you and everyone else goes wrong in the practice of tidying up and throwing away. So yes, please read the book, take out whatever you need, and then throw it out. The 2000s had their floppy disks and that's the one thing I don't have any trouble with.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Shultz

    I have read a lot of books on getting rid of clutter and becoming more of a minimalist. I love the topic. (See my "clutter" book category in Goodreads.) So when I saw that this book is what inspired Marie Kondo's books, I decided to read it. It is not my favorite but I still liked it. There was some unnecessary repetition and a few typos. Here is a great line: "If you have it use it. If you don't use it, don't have it." Reading the book created another wave of me getting rid of stuff I don't use I have read a lot of books on getting rid of clutter and becoming more of a minimalist. I love the topic. (See my "clutter" book category in Goodreads.) So when I saw that this book is what inspired Marie Kondo's books, I decided to read it. It is not my favorite but I still liked it. There was some unnecessary repetition and a few typos. Here is a great line: "If you have it use it. If you don't use it, don't have it." Reading the book created another wave of me getting rid of stuff I don't use!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Martha

    I purchased this book because of a reference made by Marie Kondo in her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. She stated her inspiration started with The Art of Discarding. Well, this book did not work well for me. There is quite a bit of repetition of the same subject matter and the organization of the book fell flat in my opinion. There are some good points made, but I am enjoying Marie Kondo’s book much more.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Christy

    The Art of Discarding is the book that Marie Kondo claims inspired her book, Tidying Up. Some key differences: Kondo says you should do all of your discarding and organizing in one go, while Tatsumi says this would be overwhelming and impossible. The best advice I got from this book was that when you think you MIGHT use something later, you probably won’t. When you stash something in a “temporary” location, that will probably become its permanent home. This was a quick read and I found it to be The Art of Discarding is the book that Marie Kondo claims inspired her book, Tidying Up. Some key differences: Kondo says you should do all of your discarding and organizing in one go, while Tatsumi says this would be overwhelming and impossible. The best advice I got from this book was that when you think you MIGHT use something later, you probably won’t. When you stash something in a “temporary” location, that will probably become its permanent home. This was a quick read and I found it to be useful.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Krysztina

    A lot has changed since I read Fumio Sasaki's Goodbye, Things and decided minimalism wasn't for me. Most notably, I moved house and, as I was piling stuff in boxes and going out to buy more boxes that I could pile more stuff in, it dawned on me that hoarding might not be the best approach to live after all. I've been a reformed minimalism for a couple months now, and my pile of possessions has been dwindling ever since. I'm even doing a 30-day discard challenge at the moment, and this is where Na A lot has changed since I read Fumio Sasaki's Goodbye, Things and decided minimalism wasn't for me. Most notably, I moved house and, as I was piling stuff in boxes and going out to buy more boxes that I could pile more stuff in, it dawned on me that hoarding might not be the best approach to live after all. I've been a reformed minimalism for a couple months now, and my pile of possessions has been dwindling ever since. I'm even doing a 30-day discard challenge at the moment, and this is where Nagisa Tatsumi's The Art of Discarding comes into play. I was looking for a quick, easy read on minimalism and the sample convinced me. I breezed through the digital version in one afternoon and walked away with some interesting insights. The one that hit home the most was that when you die, your stuff becomes somebody else's garbage. I've been in a position to deal with endless piles of junk left by someone who had passed away, so this really hit home. Be aware, though - this is a very Japanese book. It's filled to the brim with things that apply to Japanese culture and living (as someone who lived there for a few years, I recognized more than a few), but it might not be as relevant to Western society in 2018. The parts on men and women's preferences and approaches in particular won't ring true for a lot of people. Still - as long as you can take away the things that apply to you and try some of Nagisa's methods, The Art of Discarding is worth a read. Just be sure to buy the digital edition, because, y'know... minimalism. :)

  8. 5 out of 5

    Anthony J

    ***Full disclosure: I received this book for free in a giveaway.*** This book was so effective I threw it away! Ok, not really. Long story short, this is a quick read full of "tough love" advice such as acknowledging that you're never going to use those things that "might be useful someday." Although the book was written only 12 years ago, it feels very dated at times. I'm not sure if the culture difference has anything to do with it, but as an American living in 2017 I feel like it still would ha ***Full disclosure: I received this book for free in a giveaway.*** This book was so effective I threw it away! Ok, not really. Long story short, this is a quick read full of "tough love" advice such as acknowledging that you're never going to use those things that "might be useful someday." Although the book was written only 12 years ago, it feels very dated at times. I'm not sure if the culture difference has anything to do with it, but as an American living in 2017 I feel like it still would have been dated in 2005. The real value here is the author's calling out of our mental hangups that result in clutter. There are plenty of example situations we can easily find ourselves in, and we make excuses to not take care of things right then and there. Get rid of your junk and enjoy a less cluttered life, otherwise you'll just die in a house full of junk that someone else will have to throw away.

  9. 4 out of 5

    AMY

    This is a great book to get your mind set for a big or even small organizing project. I really enjoyed the way the author broke down the ideas about how to get rid of the things we no longer need. It helped me organize my mind as well as my items. I am now inspired to clean it out even more than I had already. She has offered many great examples and tips on the whole process that would be helpful to everyone. It is a resource I will definitely keep, share its ideas with friends and refer to ofte This is a great book to get your mind set for a big or even small organizing project. I really enjoyed the way the author broke down the ideas about how to get rid of the things we no longer need. It helped me organize my mind as well as my items. I am now inspired to clean it out even more than I had already. She has offered many great examples and tips on the whole process that would be helpful to everyone. It is a resource I will definitely keep, share its ideas with friends and refer to often. The author of Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up - Marie Kondo - says she based her whole philosophy on this book and I understand why. I highly recommend it.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Jessica M

    http://jessjustreads.com The Art of Discarding was first published in the year 2000 and has now been reprinted as a gorgeous nifty hardback. It was the book that inspired Marie Kondo to write The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying and in it, Nagisa argues that we need to learn to let go, and she tackles the psychological issues that people have with getting rid of things. In particular, a reluctance to discard things ‘just in case’, the desire to hoard things, and guilt about getting rid of things th http://jessjustreads.com The Art of Discarding was first published in the year 2000 and has now been reprinted as a gorgeous nifty hardback. It was the book that inspired Marie Kondo to write The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying and in it, Nagisa argues that we need to learn to let go, and she tackles the psychological issues that people have with getting rid of things. In particular, a reluctance to discard things ‘just in case’, the desire to hoard things, and guilt about getting rid of things that were given as gifts. I found The Art of Discarding to be a quick, simple remedy for anyone who is struggling to declutter their lives. The advice is straight-forward, well explained, and accessible for all readers. I did feel like some of the information was a bit outdated, and perhaps in this reissue, Nagisu could’ve included more up to date information. For example, she talks about people who do bookkeeping and keep physical copies of all their records, but she doesn’t mention that a lot of people might keep these electronically now and that perhaps that’s what all people should do (scan the information and save it to their computer, or email it to themselves to keep as a record). There is a lot of mention about books and magazines and how adults feel like those are the two things that they feel can’t throw away, but probably they should. I found this enlightening, given I have way too many books and too many bookshelves and I’m constantly trying to donate excess books. I have a rule: If I’ve read the book and I know that I’m never going to read it again, and I’ve reviewed it, I donate it. There’s no use keeping a book that you’re not going to read again (or admire ever again!) The Art of Discarding really has two sections: in the first half of the book, Nagisu goes through ten attitudes that people can adopt to help them tidy up their things. And then she goes through ten strategies fro discarding. These two sections help break up the book and the reader can flick through it really quickly. This book is very focused on Japanese culture with Japanese customs. Nagisa talks about post-war attitudes in Japan and how that has affected people’s inability to declutter their homes, but this is really only relatable for Japanese readers. For example, Nagisa talks about her mother and how she has post-war-thinking: “As children in the post-war years her generation knew real want. They were marrying at a time when the country had begun to produce a succession of new home-electrical and other products. Things are precious to them. They can’t throw away something useable without a sense of guilt.” Whilst I found this interesting, I couldn’t relate because I’m not from Japan and I’m also not from the generation that was alive during the Second World War. Even in the year 2000, Nagisa was ahead of her time. She probably didn’t predict a tidying up trend, but she’s certainly considered one of the first authors to write a book about this topic and she was an overnight sensation. She definitely delivers some home truths in this book. Things that people might not want to admit are true but really are: “Disposal of most things in the house is often down to women - clothes, shoes, socks, general household goods, etc.” Women usually are more motivated to declutter than males are, and it’s very clear in this book with every household example that Nagisa gives. I recommend this book to people who are looking for other ways to declutter. I also find this book good for people who are quite organised, but just need that bit of extra help. For example, you’re quite tidy and you don’t have much stuff, but you do have quite a lot of documents on your work desk and you’re not sure whether they should be thrown out or filed away in folders and boxes. Thank you to Hachette Publishers for sending me a review copy of this title.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Katie Crichton

    For those who have read Marie Kondo's The Magical Art of Tidying Up, there are still some nuggets to glean from The Art of Discarding. I enjoyed the structure of the book, as Tatsumi encourages people to "Think Like This" and offers suggestions on specific items of which to be wary. My favorite passage: "To stop seeing things are sacred, you have to tell yourself one thing: 'When I am dead, it will all be trash.' " Point taken. I also like Tatsumi's strategies about how one can learn to tidy, and For those who have read Marie Kondo's The Magical Art of Tidying Up, there are still some nuggets to glean from The Art of Discarding. I enjoyed the structure of the book, as Tatsumi encourages people to "Think Like This" and offers suggestions on specific items of which to be wary. My favorite passage: "To stop seeing things are sacred, you have to tell yourself one thing: 'When I am dead, it will all be trash.' " Point taken. I also like Tatsumi's strategies about how one can learn to tidy, and areas in which to start. She encourages the reader to select areas where they will not put things, like the kitchen table or junk drawers. Such small changes are a great place to start. All in all, this is a nice companion to Marie Kondo's work, and I'm glad I've read them both. Now to get home and do some discarding.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jo

    I didn't agree with all of the authors thoughts - particularly when she would indicate that everything is available online. However, the book was generally informative and gave some ideas of how to get started when addressing the clutter that surrounds. The Art of Discarding is from a different (Japanese) culture/perspective, and that difference was interesting but required some level of interaction to reimagine the advice applied to a life and culture that I found more familiar. I didn't agree with all of the authors thoughts - particularly when she would indicate that everything is available online. However, the book was generally informative and gave some ideas of how to get started when addressing the clutter that surrounds. The Art of Discarding is from a different (Japanese) culture/perspective, and that difference was interesting but required some level of interaction to reimagine the advice applied to a life and culture that I found more familiar.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Gwen

    Quick read and some helpful tips on discarding - which I'm continually working on. A lot about the psychology of why it's hard to get rid of things. I fall in the "organized" category - I have a basket or box for most things - but keep adding and never go through and sort/toss. After reading - I was able to go through my box of manuals and get rid of 80% of them. Had many for items I don't even own anymore. Next step is to throw my box of buttons that come with clothes - that I've never gone int Quick read and some helpful tips on discarding - which I'm continually working on. A lot about the psychology of why it's hard to get rid of things. I fall in the "organized" category - I have a basket or box for most things - but keep adding and never go through and sort/toss. After reading - I was able to go through my box of manuals and get rid of 80% of them. Had many for items I don't even own anymore. Next step is to throw my box of buttons that come with clothes - that I've never gone into ONCE. Sure most clothes are long gone that go with the button and I'm not a sew a button on type of person anyway! I also liked her tips for breaking the "someday" mindset....someday it will come in handy, someday I will use it, etc.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    2.5 stars I read this to find out what first inspired a young Marie Kondō to start tidying. Tatsumi had some interesting things to say about the mentality of why we collect stuff and why it's hard too let go. Kondo is good for big change, reevaluating your lifestyle, and finding joy in your surroundings. Tatsumi is just telling you flat: you've got too much stuff - throw out everything you are not using. 2.5 stars I read this to find out what first inspired a young Marie Kondō to start tidying. Tatsumi had some interesting things to say about the mentality of why we collect stuff and why it's hard too let go. Kondo is good for big change, reevaluating your lifestyle, and finding joy in your surroundings. Tatsumi is just telling you flat: you've got too much stuff - throw out everything you are not using.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    This was not really any NEW information for me, it's all techniques that most of us probably know. But the way it's described, the presentation of all of it....it actually evokes the feeling that the author intends, so that you feel like you DO own too much and that you could easily pare down what you own and be happier for it. Her solutions are so simple that it seems obvious, but it wasn't until reading parts of this book that I really decided to make some of these strategies my own. I began t This was not really any NEW information for me, it's all techniques that most of us probably know. But the way it's described, the presentation of all of it....it actually evokes the feeling that the author intends, so that you feel like you DO own too much and that you could easily pare down what you own and be happier for it. Her solutions are so simple that it seems obvious, but it wasn't until reading parts of this book that I really decided to make some of these strategies my own. I began to clean house a bit while reading, and can't wait to continue beyond what the book has offered.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Tatiana Kim

    good book to start with, but it's too much in details. if that would be my first book. i would read it daily before my house get freedom. but being well taught with Marie Kondo i would say it's a bit too much. good book to start with, but it's too much in details. if that would be my first book. i would read it daily before my house get freedom. but being well taught with Marie Kondo i would say it's a bit too much.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    When you think about it, there's nothing really revolutionary in what Tatsumi says, and yet... I read the book and realized, yes! I am exactly like this! My worst habit when it comes to discarding things is not that I don't realize they shouldn't be thrown out, but I don't know how to dispose of them properly or that I think there has to be better ways to get rid of things than simply dooming them to a landfill. And so, the items accumulate and things get really messy. Tatsumi kinda sounds like m When you think about it, there's nothing really revolutionary in what Tatsumi says, and yet... I read the book and realized, yes! I am exactly like this! My worst habit when it comes to discarding things is not that I don't realize they shouldn't be thrown out, but I don't know how to dispose of them properly or that I think there has to be better ways to get rid of things than simply dooming them to a landfill. And so, the items accumulate and things get really messy. Tatsumi kinda sounds like my mom. My mom said she came to the realization that if you don't use something within a year, you're never going to use it so you might as well throw it out. I think my mom would love this book, although she is definitely the type to throw out treasured keepsakes for the sake of less clutter (Tatsumi explicitly says in the book, "don't get discard-happy with other people's stuff") so maybe I shouldn't give her this book... I disagree with Tatsumi on throwing everything out though. I mean I get the whole "when you die these things will just be junk" (harsh, but true), but think of all the things from history we have and we know of because people let things accumulate rather than discarding it. Ledgers from history give a glimpse into what people were buying and trading, and all those other small scraps and pieces that give you a sense of what an ordinary day in the life of someone who lived hundreds of years ago that are so cherished now would have been gone forever if everyone discarded everything. I also think of the recent EAR/ONS capture, where a second set of the best DNA evidence from one of the crime scenes was kept locked away in a freezer for forty years "just in case". I mean, I know that's a really extreme example and I doubt Tatsumi would advocate throwing something like that away, but it's just a thought. I also admit I like a bit of clutter. I'm not a big fan of minimalism--I really love that maximalism is starting to get more popular. I think a curated space of clutter can make quite the statement. I know that sounds contradictory, but I think it comes down to the idea that clutter that was created on purpose looks good. Clutter that comes from having too much random stuff, that's what you got to get rid of, and that's what Tatsumi is tackling here. Tatsumi's ultimate goal is not that we should always be throwing things away, but that we should be more conscious consumers in the first place. If you are regularly discarding things, then eventually you will want to own less stuff. I think that's certainly something we should all take to heart.

  18. 4 out of 5

    CC

    No need to read if you've already read Marie Kondo's book. Kondo summarizes this book's most relevant lessons within a couple chapters. No need to read if you've already read Marie Kondo's book. Kondo summarizes this book's most relevant lessons within a couple chapters.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Alana

    After reading Marie Kondo's The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing, I was curious about the book she credits as a lot of her inspiration. This being a quick read, I figured I'd see the different thoughts. Instead of trying to tidy "all in one go" as Kondo suggests, Tatsumi is all about doing it in small segments as you go, but always looking as possessions from the perspective of "is it something I can get rid of?" all while going about daily routi After reading Marie Kondo's The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing, I was curious about the book she credits as a lot of her inspiration. This being a quick read, I figured I'd see the different thoughts. Instead of trying to tidy "all in one go" as Kondo suggests, Tatsumi is all about doing it in small segments as you go, but always looking as possessions from the perspective of "is it something I can get rid of?" all while going about daily routine. Different perspectives, but both with some good points and ideas. There's some good tips, and Tatsumi makes a point to say to use which ideas work for you and your personality, and discard anything that doesn't work for you, which I appreciate. Not everyone is good at labeling everything, or stacking things a certain way, etc.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Gina

    Marie Kondo, author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, says that this book inspired her. While this book gave Kondo her basic structure, Kondo's method (gathering all of a category and keeping what sparks joy) is less ruthless than Tatsumi's hard line to discard, discard, discard. While I've lived in cluttered homes, my own home is not cluttered. I try to employ Tatsumi's method of discarding when I notice that an item is expired, broken, worn out, unused, etc. That said, I do struggle wi Marie Kondo, author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, says that this book inspired her. While this book gave Kondo her basic structure, Kondo's method (gathering all of a category and keeping what sparks joy) is less ruthless than Tatsumi's hard line to discard, discard, discard. While I've lived in cluttered homes, my own home is not cluttered. I try to employ Tatsumi's method of discarding when I notice that an item is expired, broken, worn out, unused, etc. That said, I do struggle with collecting papers - leaflet for cultural events, promotional offers, etc. In short, I think that the student (Kondo) has surpassed the master (Tatsumi), but I think that this book is valuable. It may be a more effective book for some than Kondo's book was.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Elisabeth

    A practical little handbook for anyone trying to get started with decluttering and living a simpler lifestyle, or just as a refresher in keeping up good habits. It takes a blunt look at people's common attitudes toward their possessions and how those attitudes (even positive ones like reluctance to be wasteful) can hinder them in attempts at decluttering and simplifying; and offers practical suggestions in dealing with those issues. It can be a bit repetitive (i.e. some chapters seem to re-hash A practical little handbook for anyone trying to get started with decluttering and living a simpler lifestyle, or just as a refresher in keeping up good habits. It takes a blunt look at people's common attitudes toward their possessions and how those attitudes (even positive ones like reluctance to be wasteful) can hinder them in attempts at decluttering and simplifying; and offers practical suggestions in dealing with those issues. It can be a bit repetitive (i.e. some chapters seem to re-hash or re-state in different words ideas already discussed earlier), but you there's handy commonsense tips to glean throughout.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Fiona

    So close yet so far. I think there's either a cultural difference or just this book is a little outdated but this author really seems convinced that the readers is definitely hoarding documents, newspapers and junk mail and that is definitely their main concern. Like every now and then I got a hint of "maybe you have trouble getting rid of books or clothes or other possessions" and I perked up but it felt like that was fleeting and we were back to "man isn't it hard to get rid of catalogues!" ... So close yet so far. I think there's either a cultural difference or just this book is a little outdated but this author really seems convinced that the readers is definitely hoarding documents, newspapers and junk mail and that is definitely their main concern. Like every now and then I got a hint of "maybe you have trouble getting rid of books or clothes or other possessions" and I perked up but it felt like that was fleeting and we were back to "man isn't it hard to get rid of catalogues!" ...no.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Keesa

    I picked up this book because it's mentioned in Marie Kondo's book, but I enjoyed Marie's book more. From what I understand, this book was one of the first books on minimalism and getting rid of things, and I respect it for that, but Marie Kondo took a good thing and made it better. (Also, Myquillin Smith's book on Cozy Minimalist is better still.) So this was a good book, I enjoyed it, but there are other, possibly better, books out there, and reading this one after those is a bit redundant. I picked up this book because it's mentioned in Marie Kondo's book, but I enjoyed Marie's book more. From what I understand, this book was one of the first books on minimalism and getting rid of things, and I respect it for that, but Marie Kondo took a good thing and made it better. (Also, Myquillin Smith's book on Cozy Minimalist is better still.) So this was a good book, I enjoyed it, but there are other, possibly better, books out there, and reading this one after those is a bit redundant.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Rookie

    Easy, readable book. It was a calming influence to read on my commute home. I don’t agree with it all - I think differently about recycling (lessen consumerism - really don’t waste) and books (I love them and I will only give away what I don’t love). Still, this had many useful tips for the clearing out stage of minimalism. Worth revisiting at some point in the future.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Meghan

    "But in my experience, if the difference between reality and your idea of "perfection" is too great, you may lose the will to be tidy and just allow things to accumulate."- p 93 "But in my experience, if the difference between reality and your idea of "perfection" is too great, you may lose the will to be tidy and just allow things to accumulate."- p 93

  26. 4 out of 5

    Cherie

    This was a really interesting read. I can see how Marie Kondo got inspiration from it. I can also see why it didn't take off like the KonMarie method did. This book is pretty cold when it comes to the emotional value we put on things, whereas the KonMarie method acknowledges the emotions we put in things and makes the discarding process a little easier on the heart. That being said, I think this book has three big advantages over the KonMarie method. 1) It talks at length about wastefulness and it This was a really interesting read. I can see how Marie Kondo got inspiration from it. I can also see why it didn't take off like the KonMarie method did. This book is pretty cold when it comes to the emotional value we put on things, whereas the KonMarie method acknowledges the emotions we put in things and makes the discarding process a little easier on the heart. That being said, I think this book has three big advantages over the KonMarie method. 1) It talks at length about wastefulness and its associated guilt, how we came to feeling guilty about waste, and how we came to be so wasteful. It is a really cool section that pulls in history, marketing, production, and recession era methods on making things last. 2) It also talks about how lack of space and organizational tools are often used as excuses to why we feel cluttered, but in actuality, our inability to discard is the issue. This point in particular was really eye opening for me because I have a friend who always complained about never having enough space, and she would be able to do x, y, and z once she moved into a bigger space. But every time she moved into a bigger space, it was still never enough. Reading that section about lack of space being an excuse really opened my eyes to her true situation - she never discarded, even when she moved. She just kept accumulating until every corner was bursting with stuff she would often forget about. 3) It talks, at LENGTH, about how Tatsumi defines "discarding," and the different ways one can discard an object: Recycling, donation, passing it on, selling it, etc., with throwing things in the trash bin being a last resort. She also talks about HOW you can do these things, which is really valuable information if you don't know who to contact or how to get started with alternative discarding methods. Overall, I think this is a good read, but I would not have gotten as much out of it if I had not already read the KonMarie method books. I think that this book is an excellent supplement to the KonMarie books and they should be read together because they complement each other so well, and one fills in where the other might be lacking.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Olavia Kite

    Revolutionary. Nagisa Tatsumi proposes a no-nonsense approach to managing one's stuff by romanticizing it less, bravely discarding as much as possible, and then thinking long and hard before buying more. Quite a few hard truths are contained in this book, which punch you right on your consumerist gut. I find it interesting that this work is said to have inspired Marie Kondo's The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying, because it seems to be in direct contradiction to her method. Tatsumi openly expresses Revolutionary. Nagisa Tatsumi proposes a no-nonsense approach to managing one's stuff by romanticizing it less, bravely discarding as much as possible, and then thinking long and hard before buying more. Quite a few hard truths are contained in this book, which punch you right on your consumerist gut. I find it interesting that this work is said to have inspired Marie Kondo's The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying, because it seems to be in direct contradiction to her method. Tatsumi openly expresses her disapproval of storage and organization methods: “Experts in storage and organization are generally people who enjoy such things. At the very least, they are temperamentally suited to it. This is what allows them to develop their approach in the first place. Your character is different to theirs. So however much you try to follow their methods, you're bound to fail at some stage.” I think Marie Kondo is a charming character and I like how she inspired so many people—although my admiration waned when she started selling stuff to people who had just gotten rid of so much of it. However, a more radical approach suits me best right now. Nagisa Tatsumi has spoken the words I most needed to hear at this point in my life where space is ever more scarce and stuff abounds. If you're ready to be challenged on the way you view the stuff you're drowning in but can't seem to part ways with, this is the book for you.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Miriam

    I loved 'The life changing magic of tidying up' and I decided to deepen the topic with this, which is the book that inspired Marie Kondo. I liked that Nagisa Tatsumu mentions the guilt of throwing away stuff and tries to give alternative solutions (although dated, but that's just because of the date of publication so no biggie). But I did not like the fact that she does not put much value in things, whereas I liked the approach of Marie Kondo, which was more grateful and conscious of the things I loved 'The life changing magic of tidying up' and I decided to deepen the topic with this, which is the book that inspired Marie Kondo. I liked that Nagisa Tatsumu mentions the guilt of throwing away stuff and tries to give alternative solutions (although dated, but that's just because of the date of publication so no biggie). But I did not like the fact that she does not put much value in things, whereas I liked the approach of Marie Kondo, which was more grateful and conscious of the things we bring into our lives and the service they render us. I read this because a year after reading Kondo's book I needed a new source motivation to declutter even more stuff, so I tried something new. It did work and I already have in mind at least 10 things I will throw away right after this review, but I really preferred The life changing magic of tidying up, I think the only reason this book inspired me is because it reminded me of the Konmari method.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sandi

    This was a charming little book on the benefits of living with less and how to get rid of things you really don’t need or want without feeling bad or guilty. It was originally published in 2005 in Japan, but an English translation was published in 2017. Marie Kondo gives a nice introduction citing this book as her inspiration for getting rid of unnecessary things. While I think there are some things worth having even if they are not useful, I understand the author’s main point here which is we h This was a charming little book on the benefits of living with less and how to get rid of things you really don’t need or want without feeling bad or guilty. It was originally published in 2005 in Japan, but an English translation was published in 2017. Marie Kondo gives a nice introduction citing this book as her inspiration for getting rid of unnecessary things. While I think there are some things worth having even if they are not useful, I understand the author’s main point here which is we hold on to an awful lot of stuff we just don’t need. It is well worth the small investment of time if you’re needing a jump start on decluttering or a quick, practical guide to get you on your way.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Mary Bricker

    I loved the message behind this book. I struggled with the dated information/scenarios but the concepts were the same so I am trying not to hold too much against this book. Overall I think it provides some insight into what most people with a lot of stuff feel and gives some sound advice around what to do about it. A lot of reviews had issues with the fact that this book says to get rid of books/magazines/pictures but if you read it in its entirety it is telling you to discard the items you don' I loved the message behind this book. I struggled with the dated information/scenarios but the concepts were the same so I am trying not to hold too much against this book. Overall I think it provides some insight into what most people with a lot of stuff feel and gives some sound advice around what to do about it. A lot of reviews had issues with the fact that this book says to get rid of books/magazines/pictures but if you read it in its entirety it is telling you to discard the items you don't use. Texts books or old magazines for example. It's also not saying you have to listen to every thing in this book, do what fits you and your needs. Overall this was the perfect read for me before I get ready to move!

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