Tackling Books

Some people collect knick-knacks. Some people buy an abundance of clothes or shoes. My vice is books.

As a kid I would ride my bike for miles to get to the library. I always asked for books for holidays. When I finally made an income my first purchases were horse novels.

Being a coach and writer has made buying many books even more acceptable. After all I have to keep learning, right?

We tackled my son’s cramped bookshelf of sci-fi, spy novels and science non-fiction this past week. And it reminded me I needed to go through my books.

I rarely keep novels because there are too many new novels to read. The ones I keep are nostalgic books like Anne of Green Gables and Little Women. I actually do re-read these. So when I am done with a current novel I either pass it on to friends or family, or put it in a box to take to the used book store.

As I go through the non-fiction, I ask if this book is pertinent to my current life situation. I gave some of my how to parent little ones books to my sister, a new mother.

I let got of some craft books that I was no longer doing projects from. And that diet that I will never go on again. I found a style book that looked very unstylish now.

And we don’t need to keep the whole book sometimes.

I scanned a few recipes I used from cookbooks and narrowed down my cookbooks to three. (Love the Art of Simple Food by Alice Walker.) I scanned a food plan and was able to get rid of the book.

My rule is if the books can’t fit in the bookshelves, then I have too many.

How do I slow the flow of books into the house?

  • I got a Kindle for Christmas and most new books are now on that device.
  • I have a pile of 5 books I am reading, and have to either finish the book or give away the book before i get to read a new one.
  • I ask if I already have a similar book and whether I have read it or not before I buy a book.
  • I get as many books as possible from the library. Most libraries can get books from nearby libraries if they don’t have the book you want.
  • I limit trips to Barnes and Noble. I can easily get at least one book each time I step into a bookstore.
  • I take notes on books I read, so I don’t have to keep the books when I am done.
  • I remind myself that for most books, I can pick the book up again at the library or bookstore if I really need it again. That helps with the letting go process.

And these tips work for other things like clothes and shoes as well.

What do you need to tackle?

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Photo by: Carbon NYC
 

 

 

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