What is it about magazines that makes it so hard to get rid of them? No matter how many piles they create, people struggle with letting them go.
October is National Magazine Month. People love magazines with their glossy, vibrant covers. Young models show flawless bodies and up-to-the-moment styles. Images show tantalizing, gourmet meals that can be prepared in minutes by mere mortals. They portray fantasies that we want to believe we can achieve. That’s the hook.
Do you really have time for all your reading material? If so, you’re in the vast minority. Most people hang on to way more than they can read and the piles grow. To make life simpler if you’re in the latter group, pare down the amount you allow into your home to a realistic amount. Dispose of old magazines collecting dust. Next, read the current issues. Then start anew.
Disposal does not mean tossing in the trash but rather giving them a second, third or fourth life by recycling them via your hauler. They will become useful items like phone directories (some people still use them), newspapers and paperboard boxes for pasta, crackers, etc. Ugandans and Brazilians turn them into lovely necklaces. To see the Brazilian Recycled Magazine Handbag shown above and other products made from recycled materials, visit Treehugger.com.
Here are 20 tips for keeping, donating, reusing and reducing magazines.
Create Rules To Live By (as I call them)
1. Cut out useful articles and file them in subject files
2. If the next issue arrives but you haven’t finished the last one, either get rid of the older one then or give yourself a max of one week to read it before it goes
3. Or, keep a max of two issues — if a third one arrives, the oldest one goes
4. Scan the index for articles of interest and just read those
Donate (in good condition)
5. Assisted living facilities
6. Nursing homes
7. School arts-and-crafts programs
8. Auto service waiting rooms
10. Women’s shelters
11. Ideas to create fun coasters, wastebaskets, end tables and many more can be found online.
12. Clip words to add pizzazz to your scrapbooks and journals
13. Clip images of food to teach children how to grocery shop (client tip)
14. Clip pictures of clothing to label young kids’ drawers
15. Create a monthly magazine swap
16. See if online magazine versions are satisfactory
17. Contact the subscription department to cancel (see front or back pages)
18. The Paperkarma app for smartphones stops magazines (and most junk mail) from being delivered to you — snap a photo of something that identifies the sender and the rest is done for you
19. To cancel subscriptions online, click here
20. To eliminate offers, click here
A useful resource on anything related to recycling is earth911.com. Check it out!
Maintain a realistic amount and let the rest go. It is wasteful, messy and unhealthy (dust collectors) to keep them lying around. Be eco-friendly and donate, recycle or reuse your magazines!
Product of the Month
Meet Bravo, the dog, one of 11 soft, stuffed toys called Stuffies. Each one makes me smile! They are so adorable that I would have a hard time choosing just one. You can help children organize their most prized treasures in the 7 secret compartments. Stuffies also make cuddly traveling buddies. They sell now for $29.95, regularly $39.95, at stuffies.com.
Quote of the Month
That which we persist in doing becomes easier — not that the nature of the task has changed, but our ability to do has increased. ~Emerson