We all love Marie Kondo. So why is tidying up so hard?

The Japanese neatness consultant has inspired millions to declutter. But the mania also raises some interesting questions.

marie_kondoFrom my article in the January 19, 2019, issue of New Scientist

A CLUTTER-free kitchen, living room or office resonates with a clean, graceful aesthetic. Neatness implies organisation and discipline. Stress and inefficiency disappear with stray socks and the morning’s dishes. That’s the promise of Japanese neatness consultant Marie Kondo, as she espouses “the life-changing magic of tidying up” in her Netflix series. But why are so many of us obsessed—and defeated—by the demands of tidiness? Read more

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