Spark Joy

Friday, February 26, 2016

Rarely have I ever read a book that felt like both a Cliff Notes version and an expanded and revised edition of a previous book. Marie Kondo’s accompaniment to her best-selling book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, entitled Spark Joy, is just that— both Cliff Notes and Expanded edition. While some may be quick to judge Spark Joy as a financial gain piggyback to the successful first volume, I would challenge them that Spark Joy is anything but superfluous. In fact, it fleshes out much of the original material from Life Changing Magic that was missing in the first book. 

Spark Joy is an illustrated guide to her world-renowned KonMari Method. It includes cute step-by-step illustrations for everything from shirts to socks, plus drawings of perfectly organized drawers and closets. I particularly enjoyed reading Spark Joy because it gave very concise summaries of the overall chapters in Life Changing Magic. While I still would say it is necessary to read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up in order to fully grasp the KonMari method and reasoning behind that method, Spark Joy is a great companion to have on hand when you are actually going through the process of KonMari-ing your home (and life). Spark Joy also includes advice on frequently asked questions. These were my favorite parts of this book, because it really gives a glimpse into how Kondo’s mind works. And when you can understand (or vaguely understand) her thinking behind the method, it makes the KonMari method of decluttering almost second nature. 

One unexpected component of this book is that it includes a lot of practical encouragement. Encouragement for those times when you feel overwhelmed, when you don’t know exactly which items to keep and which to discard, and encouragement to keep going until the entire process is complete. She is realistic in her expectations, but in true Japanese fashion, those expectations are set to the highest level. As a pseudo-client of Kondo (because you are holding her book), you feel her gentle urges to purge the necessary to truly get to what is beautiful and joy-sparking in your life. 

While I must admit I have yet to being KonMari-ing my home, I will say reading this companion book is a must. It is motivational, practical and simply delightful to read. If you liked The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, or maybe haven’t even read that one yet, this is a great place to start.  You can purchase it here on Amazon

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion*

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