Photo: Nigel Cox
The Knowledge Clutterer
Walsh's Three-Step Plan
1. Go digital whenever possible.
While nothing can replace a beloved, well-worn novel, "We have an entire library at our disposal nowadays via the Internet," says Walsh. "It's not necessary to own hard copies of everything." In other words, those guilty-pleasure page-turners, celebrity memoirs, and how-to books you'll read only once can live on your e-reader. And when you come across an interesting article online, e-mail yourself the URL and store these e-mails in folders labeled "interesting articles" or "weeknight dinner recipe
2. Manage magazines.
Certain issues (of O, for example!) you'll just want to hold on to forever. But if your living room is blanketed with weeklies dating to 2007, consider implementing a system: Keep the current issue and two back issues. As new titles arrive, donate the old ones to a local hospital. And remember: "The definition of a periodical is that there is always another one coming," Walsh says.
3. Establish clear limits.
Walsh suggests designating a clearly defined area for your book and magazine collection, whether that means one shelf or six. "What matters is that when you've filled the allotted area, you donate an old title to make room for any new ones," he explains. To prevent your nightstand from being swallowed by half-read paperbacks, try a bin or basket large enough to contain only three or four books; to add another, you must remove one first.
Next: The techie clutterer
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