How Marie Kondo and Elizabeth Gilbert ‘Eat Pray’ and ‘Love’ their morning routine

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It was an unlikely meeting of minds.

Marie Kondo, tidying-up queen and author extraordinaire, interviewed Elizabeth Gilbert on her KonMari website. “Eat, Pray, Love” – a story of personal and literal journey – has sold 10 million copies since 2016 and became a movie starring Julia Roberts. Turns out, Gilbert has many things in common with Kondo when it comes to working and living and deciding what ultimately matters in life.


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One of the first things Kondo asked Gilbert about her morning routine, of course. Gilbert replied:

“The first thing I do is open the blinds to bring in the light. I always say hello to the morning. I’d be willing to bet that the first prayer that the first conscious human ever spoke was to say hello to the morning – the miracle that the light went away, and now it’s back! It’s a clean slate.”

Kondo related that she did a similar thing:

“I open the window and welcome fresh air into my house – and then I burn incense. I also pray and give thanks for my daily life.”

Kondo and Gilbert are alike in many ways, the interview revealed.

They both move often – Kondo said the longest she and her husband had lived in one house was a year and a half. Gilbert is a fan of the “spark job” concept. But the similarities run much deeper than that.

Both women have dedicated their life’s work to deciding through brutal honesty what really matters in life, in order to make room for true happiness. While Kondo approaches that objective by taking a literal inventory of physical objects and deciding what must stay or go, Gilbert’s approach is more spiritual. Still, the two seem built from the same DNA when it comes to helping others finding what is true is life, and discarding what overwhelms us.