My KonMari Journey, Part 2 – BooksMarch 21, 2016
So, what happened? First, I have to tell you that I am a book lover and always have been. I’ve got an emotional attachment to many of my books. However, I have pretty much stopped buying books in recent years. Instead, I have become a very regular user of our beautiful local library. This obviously stops the influx, which is a good thing.
Working with subcategories
In contrast to the clothes category, I didn’t declutter the books in one go, but worked through various subcategories:
- Non-fiction professional
- Non-fiction personal
- Reference books
- Travel books
- Cook books
There are more possible subcategories, which were not relevant to me, such as textbooks, comics, phone books or music books. I mostly used the coffee table in our lounge room as a sorting place and sometimes I added a trestle table.
To keep or not to keep … where the joy question wasn’t always enough
Marie Kondo says not to read the covers or extracts of books, but to pick one up and feel whether it sparks joy. I have to say: I found this more difficult with books than with clothes. I naturally did sometimes read the covers before I decided what to do with it.
Once I had decided, the books ended up in one of the following piles:
- Keep but discard of when read once more
- Keep for the sentimental category
- Go to the German Community
- Go to the OP shop
- Go to the recycling bin
I did keep some books that I will eventually give away. First, however, I want to read them again (I often read books several times). So, I made a little pile of about 20 books that fell into this category. In the meantime, I have already reduced this pile and given away the ones I re-read.
Because I hate waste, I did some research first
Having lived in Switzerland for almost 40 years, most of my books are of course in German. This means that I can’t just bring them to the op shops here in Australia; at least, I wasn’t able to find one that is interested in these books. After quite a bit research, I found a retirement home with lots of German immigrants who love to read books in their native language. Knowing that the books would be appreciated made a big difference to me when deciding to let go or not.
I also knew that the local library has a magazine swap box in the entrance, so I brought all of mine there.
The professional, reference and travel books were the easiest for me to let go because I knew the contents were dated. That’s really a no-brainer.
Going through the process I was able to let go of about 126 books which represent almost exactly 50 %. Pretty good for a bookworm, don’t you think? I’m happy with the overall result, and it does feel great.
My top tip with regards to the book-category would be to think about where to bring the books you no longer want before you start the process.
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