5 minimalist tips for decluttering books and magazines

Every minimalist has his or her own weak spots. For me, it most definitely was, and still is, books. I love to read and I built up quite a personal library through the years. I dragged these books with me with every big move and although I don’t actually read most of them anymore, they still hold a certain value for me. A memory, a good story, a promise. When I started decluttering my house, I carefully glanced at my book stash. To my big surprise, there were quite a lot of books in there that I didn’t particularly wanted to hang onto. So I got rid of those. After a few months I took another look and there were yet a few more books that didn’t hold that much value for me personally. I have been casually looking into my collection for years now and I think that, through the years, I’ve gotten rid of about 60 percent of my entire book collection. And I haven’t felt regret once. The books I got rid off turned out to not be so important to me after all or were available through other ways. A lot of books dated from a time when I had certain interests or were bought with the expectation of me diving into a new passion. They started to feel like a burden, a constant reminder of all the things that I had to do in this lifetime. The New York travel guide was a constant reminder of a trip I still didn’t manage to plan, the books on psychology reminded me of how little I actually do with my degree, the collection of literature reminded me of all the books I haven’t read yet and my books on archeology dated from a time when I had other plans for my future and they were only there to make me feel guilty, emotionally burdened with memories and thoughts of things that could have been. I think taking it slow with the decluttering was important for me. It was a long process that need time and closure, but there were a lot of other factors that made it a whole lot easier for me to let those books go. Today I will share 5 minimalist tips for decluttering books and magazines and I will address the ways in which decluttering was made easier for me.

#1 Get Your News Online


We all know that we can get access to all the world news through our smartphones and computers. We simply visit the website of our favorite newspaper or another media app and we’re up to date. We tend to forget that we can do this with our favorite magazines too. There are a lot of platforms and apps that offer the possibility to read your favorite magazine, or parts of it, online. Either with or without subscription. Just find whatever platform offers your favorite magazines and you will never have to buy the paper version again.

#2 E-books


The rise of e-books has been a big plus for minimalists worldwide. Now we can have access to our favorite books without having to drag them along. You can take your personal library anywhere and access it whenever you want. I was sceptical at first, I simply love the look and feel of a ‘regular’ book, but it is a great addition to my current book collection. I use a Kobo e-reader, but there are a lot of different brands out there and some of them even offer a subscription on a big collection of free e-books which you can read.

#3 Library


But let’s not forget about the library! As a child, I loved to spend entire afternoons in our local library browsing through the books and getting lost in my own little world. Yes, I was a little nerd back then too. I still love visiting libraries and with a membership you can have (unlimited) access to every book there. This is especially great for all those books that you really want to read, but don’t necessarily want to buy. Most libraries nowadays offer a wide variety of e-books too which you can access without even going to the library.

#4 Buy Secondhand


If you still love to read ‘real’ books, but you don’t want to spend a lot of money on them, you can consider buying your books secondhand. There are a lot of (online) shops, and even more individuals through all sort of platforms, that offer secondhand books for just a fraction of the original price. If you are looking for a specific title, it might take a bit of a search, but it can save you a lot of money and it makes it easier to just hand the book over to someone else once you are done with it.

#5 Little Free Library and Travelling Books

little free library

All over the world Little Free Libraries pop up in cities, stores and on sidewalks. These little bookcases are often built and placed by individuals to inspire people to read and to facilitate book exchanges around the world. The same goes for travelling books: books that are ‘left’ somewhere as a pleasant surprise for someone else. These books have a whole story on their own and go from person to person spreading the story and the message of sharing and caring. You can find a bookcase nearby through the website of Little Free Library.

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