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Saturday, June 22, 2024

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HomeReviewsBook ReviewsReviewed: Live! Organized and Clutter-Free by Kirsten Jensen & Johan van Rooyen

Reviewed: Live! Organized and Clutter-Free by Kirsten Jensen & Johan van Rooyen


This book is written for anyone who wants to live a more organised life, be free from clutter, or leave a more earth friendly footprint. Find inspiration from practical tips and real life case studies. It’ll make a good gift for anyone going through a transition.

Kirsten Jensen starts this very helpful book by describing her family’s move to Hong Kong and how they had to adapt to the cramped space of a tiny apartment. The kitchen and the bathroom were such miniscule places that only one person could be in either room at any time. With her two small children, they had to lift the beds to make a place for their suitcases, which were still filled with clothes because there was hardly any closet space for clothes nevermind anything else.

The experience of living with such restricted space taught her to keep only those possessions that were absolutely necessary to live their daily lives. There were many revelations in the process and the key theme that surfaces in this book is not to allow your possessions to own you. She says that it can easily become the case for people who live with more room to fill with their belongings. Emotions can cause them to hold on to possessions that no longer have any function for them.

Kirsten enjoyed the organising and decluttering process so much that she decided to turn her obvious skill in this activity into a business. So she created a consulting business working by taking on assignments with clients. In a world with people always on the move, either from one city to another or from one life stage to another, which may mean down-scaling, her business is flourishing. 

Far from being a call to minimalism, the book is rather a guide to living in a way that suits a lifestyle and mindset free from the stress which can come from managing unnecessary things.

This isn’t a story about the latest fad. We aim to be timeless with our advice, rooted in meaning and experience.

Why you should read it

Because the book is based on, and inspired very much by her own experience, she is gives wide-ranging advice on how to get yourself organised in just about any situation.

She shares case studies from her experiences with clients, and in the process, gives very practical advice like, ‘Don’t allow your garage to become a dumping ground for unwanted stuff’. She also talks about clutter as a symptom of not attending to admin issues and gives advice on how to shake these behaviours rather than allowing them to clutter your thinking and mind space.

Kirsten is a deft hand at dealing with all the complexities involved in a move. Whether helping people move from family homes to retirement properties or assisting families with immigration moves, she has seen and dealt with all the emotions and eventualities and has the bona fides to help you identify potential pitfalls and avoid them.

She shares her philosophy of stuff in an easy-to-follow way that can benefit any of us who may want to address our materialism in a practical way.

There is much to recommend the practical advice Kirsten Jensen has shared in Live! and we do so with considerable enthusiasm.

*The links to Amazon in this article are affiliate links. Shopping via these links supports our website.


Amazon rating at time of publication - 4.6
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Johann is the founding partner of Reset Retirement where we focus on assisting people with planning for the non-financial aspects of their lives after full-time work. He had a long career in executive search and leadership as the founding partner and chairman of Heidrick & Struggles in South Africa where he was the head of the company’s board practice.


A practical guide to managing your things and not being managed by them. Reviewed: Live! Organized and Clutter-Free by Kirsten Jensen & Johan van Rooyen