Marie Kondo's Kurashi at Home

How to Organize Your Space and Achieve Your Ideal Life

About the Book

Transform your home into a haven of calm and achieve your ideal lifestyle with this inspirational guide, from the Netflix star and #1 bestselling author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.
Inspired by the Japanese concept of kurashi, or “way of life,” Kurashi at Home invites you to visualize your best life from the moment you wake up until the end of each day. By applying Marie Kondo's time-tested query—“Does it spark joy?”—to your mindset and behaviors, you are invited to take an even more holistic and personal approach to curating your environment by imagining what your life could look like full of connection and free from any limitations. This ideal vision then becomes a touchpoint that helps you make conscious, mindful choices—from how you use every corner of your living space to how you take advantage of every moment.
At its core, the KonMari philosophy focuses not on what to get rid of, but on what sparks joy in your life. In this inspirational guide, Kondo's unique suggestions empower you to embrace what you love about your life and then reflect it in your home, activities, and relationships, like creating a calm nook for working, scheduling weekly get-togethers with family or friends, or having relaxing nighttime rituals that promote a restful sleep.
Your newfound clarity will inspire you to clear out the unneeded clutter so you can appreciate the inviting spaces, treasured belongings, and peaceful moments that remain.

*Includes a downloadable PDF of worksheets and recipes from the book
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Marie Kondo's Kurashi at Home

If you could make any dream come true, what would your ideal lifestyle be?

Exploring the answer to this question helps build the foundation for a life that sparks joy.

That’s why I begin with every client by asking them to share their hopes and dreams. Their eyes shine as they describe a palatial house with lovely furniture in natural colors or a big kitchen where they can bake cakes. But before long reality starts to sink in, and the light in their eyes fades. “I live in a tiny apartment,” they’ll say. “How can I make a palace out of a room that’s just 80 square feet? I guess I should be more realistic.”

On the surface, this seems like a perfectly logical conclusion, and to be honest, for a long time I wasn’t quite sure how to respond. How could I ask my clients to compromise on their dreams? How could I tell someone who loves Renoir to decorate their one-room apartment with something “more suitable,” like Japanese woodblock prints, and just focus on keeping the space clean? That would never motivate them to tidy. The very thought would quench the least spark of joy.

When visualizing our ideal lifestyle, should we give our imagination free rein, or stick to what’s possible? This is a tricky question—one I had to mull over for some time.

In Japanese, the word for “lifestyle” is kurashi. As I pondered this word, I realized I didn’t know exactly what it meant. Looking it up in the Daijisen dictionary of Japanese terms, I discovered an interesting fact. 

According to this source, it means “the act of living; spending each day; daily life; making a livelihood.” The verb kurasu means “to pass one’s time until sunset; to spend one’s day.” In other words, the ideal kurashi simply means the ideal way of spending our time, and therefore is separate from the “ideal home.”

This realization reminded me of my university days when I lived in Tokyo with my parents. Even though I had my own little room, which in Japanese cities is a huge luxury, I was always full of ideals and aspirations. I dreamed of having a bigger room, a cuter kitchen, a little garden on the balcony, nicer curtains on the windows, and so on. But the kitchen was my mother’s territory, which I was forbidden to change without permission, and my room didn’t even have a window, let alone a balcony.

But this gap between my dreams and reality didn’t bother me. I used to boast about how much I loved my room. The reason I loved it was because it was my own space, a place where I could enjoy my ideal lifestyle, whether that meant relaxing before bed with aromatherapy, listening to my favorite classical music, or placing a small vase with a single flower on my bedside table.

In other words, the ideal lifestyle refers to what we do, not to where we live.

Once my clients finish tidying up their homes, very few of them consider moving or completely redecorating afterward. Often the biggest change they describe is how they spend their time at home. Through these changes, they come to love the space in which they live, regardless of whether it matches their ideal.

Even if you can’t move to a new house or apartment, you can still change your lifestyle. You just need to live as if your space is your ideal home. That’s really the point of tidying up. So, when imagining your ideal lifestyle, think concretely about what you’d like to do and how you’d like to spend your time at home.

Oddly enough, once they’ve finished tidying and have realized their ideal lifestyle, many of my clients actually end up with the house—and even the furnishings—of their dreams. I can’t count the times I’ve heard my clients say things like, “Two years after tidying we moved into a house exactly like the one I imagined.” Or “Someone gave me the kind of furniture I’d always wanted.” This is one of the many strange and wonderful effects of tidying that I’ve witnessed through my work.

Whether you believe it or not is up to you. But if you’re going to imagine your ideal lifestyle, why not go all out?

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About the Author

Marie Kondo
Marie Kondo is a tidying expert, star of the Netflix series Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, #1 New York Times bestselling author, and founder of KonMari Media, Inc.
Enchanted with organizing since her childhood, Marie began her tidying consultant business as a 19-year-old university student in Tokyo. Today, Marie is a renowned tidying expert helping people around the world to transform their cluttered homes into spaces of serenity and inspiration.
Marie has been featured on more than fifty major Japanese television and radio programs as well as in The New York TimesThe Wall Street JournalThe Times of London, VogueEllen, the Rachael Ray show, and many more. She has also been listed as one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people. More by Marie Kondo
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