Book Review: Joy At Work

Marie Kondo’s professional tidying book offers meaningful takeaways for us all

In a time ravaged by an overwhelming sense of disorder and chaos, Joy at Work is a welcoming ray of sunlight that guides readers on discovering order and peace in our closely-intertwined personal and professional lives. 

Authored by Marie Kondo, worldwide best-selling author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and star of Netflix’s hit show Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, Joy at Work teaches us how to spark joy in a place which more often sparks exhaustion–the workplace.  

Kondo breaks the book down into three bite-sized categories, making it easier for readers to digest the anarchy which can often take over our workspaces. The celebrated tidying consultant begins with tips on how to clean up desks overwhelmed with endless piles of papers and disheveled heaps of office supplies. 

From there, she moves on to why our current workplaces warrant a total digital cleanse of inboxes and smart devices. In the final section, she moves to the emotional and subliminal: to tidying up and smoothing over connections with our colleagues and professional network. 

Throughout the book, Kondo constantly reiterates the importance of asking ourselves three essential questions to bring about a holistic work cleanse: Is it required for my job? Does it help me move closer to my ideal work life? And of course, the now-familiar, classic Kondo question: Does it spark joy?

Joy at Work provides a fundamental structure for the tireless entrepreneur constantly on the grind. Her suggestions are likely to boost efficiency and productivity, but more importantly, also emphasize the importance and the process of finding joy and meaning at work. Setting aside time to organize and put things in order is an essential aspect of both our personal and professional lives.

As Kondo writes, “Tidying up allows you to rediscover your own self […] giving you a deeper sense of yourself and your true priorities.”

With elegant antidotes for workplace disarray, the international bestseller imparts an important message for all those overwhelmed by the challenges of a convoluted work environment: you deserve a job that sparks joy in your life. –JB

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