I used to be a magazine hoarder. I saved, stored, and moved hundreds of magazines around with me for years because I might get around to reading them again. What if I needed this article some time in the future? Don’t all those magazines with matching-colored spines look great taking up half of that bookcase? Does it make me look smart if I save all of these? I am not really sure of the real reason I was keeping so many back issues of magazines, but I was – until we moved to New Mexico. It was at that point that I listed them all on Craigslist for someone else to take and add to their collection, and in a matter of 1 day I had given away almost every last issue of our Dwell, Sunset, Cottage Living, Body & Soul, etc. magazine collection. What a load off!
photo credit: thebittenword.com
Talk about a reduction in clutter! Those magazines not only weighed a ton to move every time I moved to a new apartment, but they also took up shelf after shelf of bookcase space. I realized after we got rid of all those issues that they were literally & figuratively weighing me down, and I felt such relief once they were gone and were someone else’s problem. Some people wanted them for art projects in schools and some were missing issues for their own collections, but no matter what – we didn’t want them anymore.
While I still do have subscriptions and buy the occasional one-off issue of something, I now am scanning the articles I want to save into Evernote or saving web addresses right in my computer, where I can reference them forever without having either the magazine or a torn page hanging around the house for years. Chances are that in a few months I won’t have much use for whatever I saved today, but at least now it is only in digital format and not cluttering up my space. When I am done with the physical magazines, I am bringing them to the library where they are put out on the “free” table for residents to take home. Not only does this save people money from having to buy their own copy, but it also gives the magazine one more life before heading to the recycling bin. It’s a win-win for everyone.
So, this leads me back to my initial question – do you keep all your magazine back issues? Do you keep the full magazine, just the pages you need, or do you get rid of it and digitize the information that you want to keep? Let’s discuss!