Here’s Why Everyone Is Talking About Marie Kondo’s Netflix Show, ‘Tidying Up’

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If Marie Kondo and the “KonMari” method have been popping up in your web and social media browsing lately it’s probably because Netflix just launched a new show featuring the chipper Japanese organizational guru. And “Tidying Up With Marie Kondo” has been a hit.

The eight-episode series shows Kondo, the author of “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing,” visiting families in their homes and offering them de-cluttering advice to get through their particular issues.

One married couple has two small children and little time to keep on top of household detritus and demands. A widow doesn’t know what to do with her late husband’s belongings. A family of four has had to downsize their living quarters. And so on.

Kondo first hit the home-organization radar when her popular “Life-Changing Magic” book came out in 2014. She followed it up with “Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up” in 2016.

This is the woman who asks you to hold each item you’re sorting through and see if it “sparks joy” in you. If it does, keep the item. If not, thank it and let it go.

marie kondo photo
Flickr | Web Summit

The show’s Jan. 1 release was timed to hit people at their most motivated New Year’s resolution best. But the appeal of the show goes beyond that.

For one, Kondo may be the queen of clean, organized and tidy spaces, but she’s not here to lecture anyone. Instead, she comes across as incredibly sweet with a magically motivational air.

“I’m so excited because I love mess!” Kondo explains with a happy smile on her face before she dives into helping one family.

She’s not shaming the show’s families. Instead, Kondo is gently easing them into the realization that her techniques can make them feel better not only about their homes but their lives, too.

On the show, Kondo goes over her specific folding method. It seems a bit cheesy, but her respect for clothes extends to her larger philosophy about expressing gratitude for the things you have.

Kondo also asks people to sort through their belongings by category and in a specific order:

  1. Clothing
  2. Books
  3. Paper
  4. Komono (kitchen, bathroom, garage, miscellaneous items)
  5. Sentimental items

This culling system leads to another part of the show’s appeal: The average viewers that say, “I probably have too much stuff,” can easily see themselves in the people and homes featured in each episode. What’s more, they gain clear ideas on how to get their own houses in order.

Finally, Kondo isn’t offering people remodeling or design tips, other than being a big fan of using boxes to keep things organized. It’s all very attainable.

So attainable that as soon as I finished watching the first “Tidying Up” episode, I headed to my dresser to sort and refold all my clothes. You’ll probably get that urge, too, after starting the show.