Magazine Management – 7 Tips to Clear the Clutter

magazine management

This past month I have been on a decluttering kick, and one of the first things I did was a little magazine management.

This is only the beginning of an urge to purge that I have had for several years now.  Two years ago we sold my mother’s house and moved her into an assisted living facility. Before we could sell the house we had to go through my Dad’s stuff that he had collected over the years. We’re talking serious STUFF!!!! Bless his heart, yes he was a hoarder. We knew this day would come after he passed away, and there was no getting out of it.

So all of the family got together and we plowed through it. It took 3 big dumpsters and MANY trips to the local junk yard to get rid of it all. He collected odd things. Multiples of garden tools, woodworking tools, wood, fishing supplies, nuts, bolts, and yes magazines. You name it, and he probably had several of them.  We did hold an estate sale which was a lot of work. It took us several weekends to finish the task. We’re talking hauling stuff out of a basement that was almost chock full to the ceiling of STUFF.

This impacted me like no other! I swore that I would never do this to my kids. Wanting to gut my own house was a dominant feeling and still is. I started getting rid of things left and right. My own tendencies to KEEP stuff were brought to my awareness. We have good intentions right. “I can use this someday”, “I may need it someday”, “I can fix it and save money”, etc. are all excuses we may use to justify the hoarder in us.

Do you have any hoarder tendencies?

I think most people do, obviously some more than others.

magazine management

Anyway, back to MAGAZINES. The first room in my clutter control project was my craft and sewing room. I had a few shelves that I stored my magazines on. Ya, it looked cute, added some color to the white shelves, but they had been there for years.

We’re talking some of these magazines dated back to 1996. The old Country Living favorites, Yoga Journal, and of course Martha Stewart’s Living to name a few.

Why did I keep them? It seemed that whenever I would go through a magazine a second time, there were things in there I had missed. Heaven forbid, I could miss something. So they sat on the shelf looking pretty and never got looked at again. Well not until I started my magazine management project, where I did a quick look through and then tossed.

I have since leaned and have come up with a few rules and guidelines to help keep the magazine situation in control. Here they are.

7 tips for magazine management

1-      Purge

Get rid of your stash! If you feel you need to go through some of your favorite magazine titles to see if there is anything worth saving, do it. Put those magazines in a box out of the way. Whenever you have a few minutes downtime to sit and relax, you can grab a stack of magazines and flip through them. (I find whenever we are traveling and I’m not driving, is a good time to flip through magazines).  If there are magazines that you just don’t even want to bother looking through, just toss them!

2-      Donate

Take some of the magazines to your doctor’s or dentist office, or local hospital waiting rooms. Perhaps you have friends who may be interested.

3-      Limit your subscriptions

Get rid of those magazines that are just full of fluff and advertisements. Stop and think if that magazine is really worth the money or your time to read. Can you get that information online?

4-      Go Digital

Most magazines nowadays have a digital version available. If you are one who likes to read your magazines on the computer or digital device, this is a great option.

5-      Recycle

If you have access to a recycling center that processes paper, take advantage of it. I am lucky because in my community we have a recycling can that gets picked up every other week. It’s wonderful.

6-      Read It & Rip It Out

Read & rip out  has been my system for many years, which limits the need to keep any magazine. Whenever I receive a magazine in the mail, I keep it in a rack for a very short time. I read through it, rip out anything that I am interested in, and immediately toss it in the recycling bin. I do like to rip out recipes, inspiring photos, and occasional articles for future reference. Those pages go in my file or on my vision boards.

The photo shown above on the left is an old bike basket that I keep some of my favorite magazines in. I placed felt pads underneath so it doesn’t scratch the bathroom floor.

7-      Keep Only Your Favorites

Occasionally there will be magazines or catalogs that are full of things that inspire me. I will keep them in a wicker basket that I display in my living room or bathroom. (The photo that is shown on the right is a nifty magazine rack I designed years ago, and my amazing, handy husband built it for me). These are magazines that I can flip through at leisure that bring me joy.

I do keep a few magazines and catalogs  that are my favorites.  Pottery Barn (great ideas for paint colors, home decor, and decorating), Whole Living (until they decided to stop publication), Simple,  and Eating Well.

So there you have it. A few magazine management tips. Don’t let clutter consume you, zap your energy and keep you stuck in the past.

WebMed has a great article on how clutter can drain your energy. Check it out here.

Let it go!

Here are a few of my other posts related to clutter that you may be interested in.

Clutter Free – Step by Step

De-clutter your wallet

26 day detox

Clutter Free Hot spots


You got this!




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Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

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