Posts tagged ‘home’
One of my ongoing goals is to organize my home/life. I tend to start this project several times a year and then get completely overwhelmed and quit without accomplishing much, and sometimes having made things worse. This year I’m trying something different: as much as possible, I’m tackling small projects and doing them from start to finish. Today I organized my bookshelves.
Since I started working in libraries I don’t buy nearly as many books as I used to, but I still have quite a few. Many of them are in storage, but the ones in the house tend to get disorganized pretty quickly. When I don’t have places to put things I just start stacking, so today I was sorting through piles of books and other stuff and putting them in order back on the shelves.
It’s very dusty work, so I weeded and cleaned as I went, and I’m quite happy with the result. I have room for all the books I want to keep in the house plus a little extra for growth, and everything is in order and visible. I am one happy librarian!
I decided that I’m going to try to post a daily recommendation – might be a book, movie, website, song, whatever. I’m considering this a target and not a moral obligation, so there will inevitably be days missed, but I thought it would be fun to talk about some of the new stuff I come across along with some older favorites and thereby resist the temptation to post about what I ate for lunch just because I can’t think of anything else to say. So, with no further ado:
Although I don’t make resolutions, this book seems like a good fit for the beginning of a new year. It’s All Too Much by Peter Walsh is a handbook for clearing out the clutter in your home and organizing what’s left. There are lots of practical tips and how-tos, but what I really liked about this book was Walsh’s emphasis on how clutter and the proliferation of stuff affects your quality of life. The entire book is informed by the idea of living the life you want to live instead of being controlled or overwhelmed by stuff you possess (or stuff that possesses you).
I am not a fan of resolutions. I like to take the end of the year and the beginning of the next one as a time to evaluate and so on, but resolutions just seem like a set-up for failure so I avoid them. In fact, I studiously avoid starting anything new (exercise routines, organizing systems, what have you) on January 1st, even if it’s something I really want to do. I either start before January or later in the month just to avoid the psychological association with resolutions and failure. (I don’t know how much good that actually does, but…).
Having said that, I was totally inspired by Merlin Mann’s posts on clutter and feel like using the New Year to get control of this area of my life. Merlin posted links yesterday to a good Ask Metafilter discussion on literary clutter (Librarians, take note!) and his series on his own “War on Clutter.” The one that really kicked my butt: Never “organize” what you can discard – oh my gosh, how many dollars I have wasted at the Container Store doing exactly that!