24 May 2011

Decluttering #1 - Bookshelves

As I started this whole process with my desk, it made sense to continue from there. So todays mission was to sort through the two bookshelves above my desk. 
It was here that I hit the brick wall so familiar to me whenever it comes to chucking stuff out. I seem to develop weird attachments to the strangest things. 
So I made a deal with myself. 
Everywhere I 'sorted' I had to chuck away/recycle/donate at least one thing.
Which isn't much, I know - but its a start, and I hope that by doing this, it'll become a bit easier. 

The left hand shelf was easy - its where I keep my non-refrigerated/frozen food (a strange arrangement I know, but it works for me!) So I:
  • Checked the dates on everything
  • Threw out old teabags - I don't actually drink tea...
  • Put my lighter to one side to donate 
  • Stacked everything so I can see what I have 
The right hand shelf was more difficult... 
  • I recycled all the Uni documents that I no longer needed or could find online
  • Put a paperweight that I never use in the 'donate' bag - this was difficult as it was a gift
  • Sorted my folder of guitar sheet music - I could have scanned these in to save more space, but there's something wonderfully simple about playing music from a piece of paper
  • Notebooks! I have so many, about a quarter of this shelf was just notebooks. However, as my education is guaranteed to continue for at least the next 3 years, I decided to keep all of them - as it seems far more wasteful to throw paper away now only to purchase more later on. I have however stored all except one under my bed. 
  • Cookery books & various 'starting university' guides - my initial reaction was to put them aside for donation, however as my brother is going to uni next year, I've decided to hang on to them until I go home for the summer - and give them to him instead 
  • National Geographic magazine - I know that I should get rid of the ones I've read. But I really do enjoy reading them again. So I've decided to read them all again, once, and then give them away to friends who would be interested. 
  • Recycled the glass jar I was using to save pound coins in for the washing machines - I can keep them in my purse/use the change machine at the launderette
In terms of 'clutter' I still have a moneybox and a scent diffuser. But the scent diffuser is kind of necessary when you live with people who have never heard of the concept of washing up! And the moneybox is where I keep all my change when I clear out my purse every week. 

So maybe I haven't done the job as a hardcore minimalist would. But its less stuff than I had to start with. So I call that a victory!

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