I mentioned this earlier in the week and decided to go ahead with the very first book club for My Frugal Adventures. I have always wanted to do something like this because I absolutely love to read. I thought it would be fun to tackle some more challenging books that might be educational or focus on self improvement.
Sometimes with the more challenging stuff it is nice to have support from a community, ask questions and hopefully motivate one another! So the first book I thought we could tackle is The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up.
This was a massive best seller last year and continues to take over my Instagram feed and Facebook and there is even a follow up book just released called Spark Joy.
The book details a methodology for purging items in your home to create a peaceful atmosphere without the burden of clutter and stuff that you don’t love and that doesn’t bring you joy. Initially the premise seems simple- toss stuff out- but in reality it really is a huge task.
The book walks you through the process- just note it is written from a Japanese author so there are some cultural differences to take into account. Overall I really do think this process makes sense.
In the beginning of the book the author asks you to visualize the life that you want to lead. The idea is that by organizing and tidying, you create more room in your life for the way you really want to live. The author of the book claims that if you really follow her method, you should only have to do this once in your life. You will cut down on the constant need to organize and tidy because you have purged the stuff you don’t need and you have designated space for the things you do need.
My vision is of having a fresh, clean home. I don’t want junk piled up on every surface. I want a light, bright and airy home where you open cupboards and closets and they are neat and organized. I don’t want to trip over kid’s backpacks and soccer cleats and open drawers to find a mountain of junk tumbling out at me.
I can tell you when my husband and I bought our first home (before kids) we did live this way. The closets and drawers were neat and clean and tidy. I want to go back to that lifestyle again and I really want to teach my children a way to live life joyfully without suffocating under piles of stuff. I really do believe that too much stuff takes away joy and in lots of ways it deflates you bit by bit in your home.
So the author breaks the book into five sections and I thought we could break the book club into five sections as well. I do think this will get you a great start but as Americans, we probably have a lot more stuff than she takes into account in her book. The author writes from a Japanese perspective- most likely her clients all live in small, apartments in large, urban areas. Those of us in larger single family homes will still have garages full of lawn items and Christmas decorations and other things to take into consideration.
But her book I think gets a really great start and teaches the system to tackle all our stuff, step by step.
The order of purging is Clothing, Books, Papers, Komono (loosely translated as misc. items) and lastly sentimental items.
I created a printable checklist to keep track of the tasks in the order she outlines. If you’d like to join the book club, I thought I would do one quick weekly post discussing each section. The things I did and learned and chat in the comments from you guys. The posts will be up on Sunday for the next 5 weeks. I will also be doing a weekly Periscope* on Tuesday morning at 10am PST or 1pm EST.
So the first task to get started is clothing. We actually finished the clothing section already and moved on to books and papers this weekend. You might want to pick up the book and read through page 85. That details the overarching method and walks you through the process of tidying clothes. If you can get through about 17-20 pages per day of reading you will be ready to start tidying next weekend! (I listened to the book on Audible and it was very quick so don’t let 85 pages overwhelm you.)
Are you in? I hope so! Who has already started this program? Any thoughts or tips?
*Periscope is a free app you can find in the app store. You will want to download it, register and then click on the three people icon on the bottom right. That should bring up the search bar to search “frugal adventure” (me!) Click follow and then the app will give you a cute little whistle when I broadcast. If you are able to jump on, you can add live comments for a virtual discussion. Fun! If you can’t log on at that moment, you have 24 hours to go back and watch and then the video vanishes. If you watch the replay at a later time you are able to give hearts (basically a thumbs up) but you can’t leave comments.