Yesterday I spent several hours finding every single book that I own (except all the ones my family uses and all the children’s books) and putting them on the floor of my room. Now I’m sorting through them, and it’s excruciating. Not because I don’t know which too keep and which to give away, but because I’m actually sorting through twenty-five years of my past, and not all the memories are happy ones. I have little resentments and disappointments — not a big deal all in all, but all piled on my floor . . . ugh.
I’m doing this as part of the process in the book the life-changing magic of tidying up, which I posted about yesterday. This is the second stage of tidying. The first was clothes. I gathered every last item of clothing I owned and decided whether or not they “sparked joy.” Taking the time to consider each item one by one was indeed “life-changing magic,” because it tuned me in to my emotional response to all the times. Turns out, some of them just made me feel bad about myself. They’re gone now, and I wish them well in their new life!
The same is happening with books, but it’s much stronger and harder. Once I’m done, though, I’m going to look at my bookshelves and feel good about every single thing I see!