How to Downsize Your Book Collection

If you love a good book, chances are you've gained quite the collection through the years. Avid readers may have multiple bookshelves overflowing in their homes. Even if you don't consider yourself a 'reader' you probably have more books than you might realize. Maybe they've been gifted through the years or maybe they are part of your decor. There is no denying that books take up space. They are also quite heavy, so moving companies may charge you a lot of money when you have to move. When it's time to downsize, move or clear your house of clutter, follow these tips!

When you start the process, try and leave the "scarcity" mindset at the door. This is the belief that there will never be enough, and your actions then reflect your fear of lack. Stop thinking "what if I need this in the future?" Also, realize and acknowledge that the books themselves are not memories. Many people hold onto books for sentimental value, but you don't need to keep the physical book to keep the memory.

Removing outdated or unused reference books is an easy place to start. We're talking encyclopedias and dictionaries...the ones that probably take up the most space and weigh the most! With the internet, there's really no need for these types of books anymore.

Next, consider selling some of your older books or collections that may have acquired value over the years. For instance, you can sell comic books for quite a pretty penny, depending on your collection. You can declutter and make some money at the same time.

Give yourself permission to keep your very favorites. If you have 100 favorites, perhaps you should look up the definition of the word favorite! These are the books you truly adore and would happily re-read again and again if they were the only books you owned. Stick those in a "keep" pile.

Do you have books you've never read? You can look up book summaries online to get a quick overview of the book. Keep the ones you know you will eventually read and remove the books that you know you will never read. There's just no sense to hanging on to books that you're never going to read (don't let that scarcity mindset creep in). Same goes for books that you've read but know you will never read again. This will probably be most of your books. You've read them, but they don't qualify as a favorite, and they aren't good enough or interesting enough to re-read. Their purpose was to entertain you for a short period of time, and now that the time is up, it's time to let them go.

For the books you've read but think maybe you'll read again....think about how much time you can actually devote to reading books and how much physical space you have to devote to storing the books. You may have to make some tough choices here. The glorious thing? Even if you get rid of a book, you can always buy a new one if you really need to. Chances are you won't. Or you can download the e-book if it's available.

Finally, do something good with all the books you've removed from your collection. Donate them to a local library or shelter or give them away to friends and family. Books are expensive, so save someone else some money!


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