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The Joy of Less, A Minimalist Living Guide: How to Declutter, Organize, and Simplify Your Life Paperback – June 25, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Anja Press (June 25, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0984087311
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984087310
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (257 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,681 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

This book is about the power of minimalist living.
Paige
I have bought this as a printed book and as a Kindle book as well, and have purchased a copy to pass to the membership of my book club.
Lee C. Scott
My favorite thing about this book is the way Francine made me THINK about my/our stuff.
M2Crabby

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

523 of 530 people found the following review helpful By meg on August 4, 2010
Format: Paperback
Wow! If you are looking for a comprehensive handbook on minimalism, decluttering, streamlining, and essentially re-wiring your preconceptions about why you have the stuff you have, this is the book for you.

Francine Jay, aka Miss Minimalist to those in her blogosphere, has written The Joy of Less, A Minimalist Living Guide: How to Declutter, Organize, and Simplify Your Life, her second book on achieving the good life by consuming less. She's a minimalist after my own heart, and unless I'm projecting too much of my own experience onto hers, appreciates the epiphany one gets by suddenly having lots of space and just a few true treasures. Francine starts right out with the mindset, the philosophy/attitude one needs to have before seriously tackling a reduction in clutter and possessions, likening this important step to changing one's eating habits as opposed to simply going on a diet. If you don't get in the mindset, you'll just backslide. I know all too well what she means by this, having done binge-purge decluttering several times over the course of my adult life until a few years ago.

This book is a well-structured, wholesale plan of attack, as opposed to loads of personal stories or autobiography. Part One tackles the the relationship we have to our stuff and why we think we have to own it. As Francine puts it: "In pursuing a minimalist lifestyle, we need to resist the temptation to recreate the outside world within our abodes." She then cites examples such as media rooms and bathroom "spas," and the dreaded home cappuccino makers. Oh yes. The section concludes with her challenge to make a list of every single thing you own-right down to every single thing in every single drawer. My brain wanted scream at the prospect of doing that-AND I've already decluttered!!!
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145 of 146 people found the following review helpful By Beth Aronson on August 4, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've read various books and articles on how to reduce clutter but none of them have spoken to me like "The Joy of Less, A Minimalist Living Guide: how to get rid of clutter and simplify your life" by Francine Jay. This book deals with every aspect of wiping out clutter and living a simpler, joyous life. Francine Jay writes about the issue both from a philosophical and practical perspective. The book is written in a way that makes it seem as though the author is talking to you, with kindness and yet with authority. This is what I needed! Jay shows you how to get started right away and then leads you through the process, step by step, room by room, giving solutions for every aspect of decluttering and simplifying your life.

The author offers solutions that are totally realistic and doable. I am amazed at the progress I have made from reading this book. My closet is now half empty and my kitchen counters are clean and free of clutter! I think that is because the book has also helped me change my way of thinking, helping me to move from a place of uncertainty to one of confidence as I go through this process. I highly recommend it!
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145 of 149 people found the following review helpful By Paige on August 11, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There are lots of books out there on living the minimalist life, but this book is different. It makes you want to run to your kitchen and start throwing out all those silver party trays you've had since you got married but never use. You suddenly feel inspired to get rid of your skinny clothes because the chances of fitting into a size 4 again are pretty slim (yes, pun intended!) I for one could not wait to hit my make-up drawer. I thought I was down-sized with my eleven compacts of eye make-up, five mascaras, 6 tubes of lipstick and various odds n ends that I haven't touched in years much less put on my face. It was so liberating to throw out all those beauty supplies that I will never get around to using.

The whole premise of this book is that having less stuff is the key to happiness. I couldn't agree more. The thing I like most about this book is it doesn't just tell you to start purging your possessions willy-nilly but it poses questions to ask yourself about everything that you own. The reader decides what gives their life value not the author. She guides you through the process and you come up with the answers.

Contrary to what the status quo would have us believe, having a lot of material possessions does not make us rich. Most of us have way too much stuff but not enough time to enjoy it all. This book is about the power of minimalist living. It's about getting rid of the excess so we can make room for new experiences and the things we truly love. Her musings on how to handle gifts and sentimental items is especially valuable. She reminds us that gifts are symbols of the giver's love. It's the intention of the giver that matters not the gift. Relish the intention and if you don't need it or want it, pass that gift along to someone else who can use it.
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94 of 97 people found the following review helpful By SMN on March 30, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
After returning from a month in NYC, armed only with basic necessities, I had an awakening. The 2 sweaters, one coat, 6 T shirts, one jeans, one pants, socks & underwear was all I needed. I've been an over packer & pack rat my entire life.

Serendipitously, I saw someone reading this book at a Cafe in New York & asked them about it.

It's been a week since I've returned. I've rid myself of 600CD's, mountains of books. 85% of my clothes.

I'm not done. Not by a longshot, but feel as I'm awakening from a deep sleep. As though I've had a mental illness for years and suddenly, am receiving the correct medication for it.

I can't recommend this book enough and have already sent it to a number of people.
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