Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Never Ending Struggle to Declutter

In 1994 I started a subscription to "National Geographic". I have faithfully renewed it every time it came due. I also faithfully kept just about every single issue. Yes, that's 18 complete years (and counting). Those issues have survived four moves, three cities and take up a fair bit of shelf space.

I've had the issues so long it's almost hard to part with them. But why am I keeping them? A new issue arrives on my doorstep every month with awesome photos and up-to-date stories. 

Do I really need to keep a whole lot of issues whose stories are now outdated? While it may be interesting to sit down and look back on some of the older issues, I'm never going to do that - or if I do, I'm clearly avoiding a yucky job that needs to get done. Plus, it's not my job to preserve that aspect of the past for years to come.

So, I've started recycling the magazines. It's going to take a bit since I don't want to blow out the blue bag before I get it to the alley for pick up. But I figure by the end of summer, all of the past issues will have made their way out of the house.

I wonder what I should move onto those empty shelves?


  1. I know how you feel! After moving ten of those magazine holder thingies (each one stuffed too full with magazines) from our apartment into our house, it occurred to me that I haven't looked at a single one of those magazines since I read them the first time. So, I too will be sneaking clumps of magazines out in the recycling!

  2. Good for you!!

    Put treasures on your shelves...things you really want to look at and that give you joy...

    1. But that was my problem; 18 years worth of issues gave (give?) me some perverse form of joy.

  3. I can understand your dilemma. Once you had amassed your collection, it would have been very hard to let go. I suspect that you won't miss it once it's gone though.

  4. I had to get rid of piles and piles of knitting magazines a few months back. My local thrift store sold old magazines for 25 cents, so I donated them there. Hopefully someone's putting them to better use than I did! Clutter is an ongoing problem in my house and I'm a little scared one day they're going to have to dig me out after it all caves in on me!