Saturday, 14 November 2015

The Magic of Tidying Up with Marie Kondo - Books

Marie Kondo says that after clothes, I need to discard books.

Well, I have lots of those. Literally, I have piles of them. Some are on the shelves while others – because I lack the shelves to house them – have been relegated to boxes.

If anyone would ask me what I spent my money on the past ten years, I have two words for her – books and travel. I spent my hard-earned money getting lost in fictional places and actual ones. And to be honest, had a rather grand time. 

Anyway, back to discarding books.

The KonMarie Method dictates that I had to take out all the books from the shelves and lay them down on the floor. Well, isn’t that the most inconvenient thing. First, books – when they’re hardbound and thick – aren’t light. Second, they could be quite dusty; and third, well, there’s just too many of them! Why couldn’t I just scan the shelves and decide which one stays and which one goes?

Of course, the high priestess of decluttering had an answer.  


Like any good follower, I did what I was told and took down all of my books. I laid them down on the floor and took every single one in my hands and felt them.

I unearthed some things while trying to discard books. There were advance screening tickets to 'New Moon' and 'Eclipse' and several CDs. There was even a happy meal hello kitty toy featuring London!

To be honest, it was hard to discard at first. 
It was hard because I chose most of these books over every other want.
I sacrificed for these books and now, I am supposed to give most of them all away?
I used to dream of owning a huge house where I could fit a library that would house all the books and magazines I own. Or perhaps, a café where guests could enjoy a book with a good cup of joe. I must confess, I have neither.

The easiest to discard are the ones I could barely remember the contents of. What is this book all about, again? Marie Kondo orders to never, ever, start reading a book when discarding. I’ll be going down the rabbit hole if I did. Besides, isn’t it a definite sign that a book is going to the donate pile when I could barely recall what it is all about? 

I was about thirty books into discarding when it suddenly hit me - by keeping these books on the shelf, barely touched for years, I am doing them a great disservice! Books are meant to be held, to be read, to impart knowledge, to illicit emotions, to move us to dream. And these books are not doing any of those while they’re with me. So perhaps, it is, indeed, time to let them go. 

I donated some books to the Rizal Library of the Ateneo and in return , they sent me this acknowledgement letter.  If you'd like to donate books to the library, head to the Acquisition Department.

While others - mostly my guilty pleasure books - will be up on the shelves of a friend's cafe. 


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