The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing - Marie Kondo 2014
Gaining confidence in life through the magic of tidying
The magic of tidying dramatically transforms your life
I have come to the conclusion that my passion for tidying was motivated by a desire for recognition from my parents and a complex concerning my mother. Being the middle child of three siblings, I did not get much attention from my parents after the age of three. Of course, this was not intentional, but being sandwiched between my older brother and the youngest child, my little sister, I could not help but feel this way.
My interest in housework and tidying began when I was about five, and I believe that I was trying in my own way not to make trouble for my parents, who were clearly busy taking care of my other two siblings. I also became conscious from a very young age of the need to avoid being dependent on other people. And, of course, I wanted my parents to praise and notice me.
From the time I was a first grader, I used an alarm clock to wake up before everyone else. I did not like being dependent on others, found it hard to trust them, and was very inept at expressing my feelings. From the fact that I spent my recesses alone, tidying, you can guess that I wasn’t a very outgoing child. I really enjoyed wandering around the school by myself, and I still prefer to do things alone, including traveling and shopping. This is very natural for me.
Because I was poor at developing bonds of trust with people, I had an unusually strong attachment to things. I think that precisely because I did not feel comfortable exposing my weaknesses or my true feelings to others, my room and the things in it became very precious. I did not have to pretend or hide anything in front of them. It was material things and my house that taught me to appreciate unconditional love first, not my parents or friends. To tell the truth, I still don’t have a lot of self-confidence. There are times when I am quite discouraged by my inadequacies.
I do, however, have confidence in my environment. When it comes to the things I own, the clothes I wear, the house I live in, and the people in my life, when it comes to my environment as a whole, although it may not seem particularly special to anyone else, I am confident and extremely grateful to be surrounded by what I love, by things and people that are, each and every one, special, precious, and exceedingly dear to me. The things and people that bring me joy support me. They give me the confidence that I will be all right. I want to help others who feel the way I once did, who lack self-confidence and find it hard to open their hearts to others, to see how much support they receive from the space they live in and the things that surround them. This is why I spend my time visiting people’s homes and instructing them in how to tidy.