Welcome to day one of our March Micro-Minimizing Challenge! If you’re new to the challenge, you can catch up on all the details here.

On day one, we’re clearing out our stacks of magazines. (If you prefer, you can watch the video at the bottom of this post.)

I used to read magazines. Especially, before the Internet. We were just talking a few days ago about the 80’s rocker posters that used to wallpaper my bedroom – all those beloved pin ups came from magazines. Then, parenting magazines became one of my go-to resources. Later, I became a writer of children’s novels so ensued the collection of writers’ magazines. I remember growing up at home and my parents had Time and National Geographic. (Boxes and boxes of National Geographic, since donated to the library.)

But let’s go back to those writer magazines. I rarely read them. Oh, I had good intentions to read them. I scanned the cover for the stories and then put it down, saying, “I’ll read it [come on, say it with me] later.” And later never came, but next month the next magazine did. Then, I would commit to setting aside enough time to look at both magazines, until next month, and before I knew it I had four years worth of “good intentions” writers’ magazines waiting to be read.

Who has this story? Who has the stacks of magazines to prove it? 🙋‍♀️

Alternately, you love receiving your magazines on schedule and you take the time to read them cover to cover. That’s awesome! At least you’re getting bang for your buck. Then what do you do with them? It’s very likely that you still keep stacks of magazines that you never go back to.

Either way, there is magazine clutter.

And when we bring in a lens of intentional living – gosh, the bombardment of ads that come inside those pages, our poor brains. (But that’s just a side note. 😊)

During one of my rounds of minimizing I sat with my stack of magazines and made the time to peruse the cover stories. If something interested me, I flipped to that article and read/scanned it. With the whole stack, there was only so much information I would gather at this point anyway. Most magazines didn’t have articles that I needed to read. I think I ripped out two articles from the whole stack. I donated the rest. Of those two articles I kept — I can’t tell you what either of them were about today.

I don’t recommend doing what I did, I was new to minimizing. What I know now is don’t waste your time. If you weren’t enthusiastic enough when the magazine arrived in your mailbox to read it, you won’t be jazzed enough about it now. And if you read the magazine when it arrived, you’re highly unlikely to read it again.

So, dig out your stacks of magazines and put them straight into a donation box. I would encourage donating them to a library, retirement home, nursing home, doctor/dentist office, pre-schools and day cares for crafts. If they are very specific topic magazines, perhaps there’s an association that might appreciate them. Sending your magazines where they’ll be used will give you a feeling of satisfaction as you remove them from your home. Let them go, and the guilt of not reading or not re-reading them will follow them out the door. I promise, that guilt will fall off your shoulders.

Set a deadline to have the magazines removed from your home. The deadline should tight and I’d suggest no more than three days from now.

It’s important to develop a maintenance system after you’ve decluttered your magazines. Consider the magazines that come into your home. If you are a person the reads the magazines — do they provide enough value that’s worth the subscription costs you are paying? If not, cancel your subscription. If you don’t bother to read them when they arrive, cancel the subscription immediately. Today. That is part of this challenge. Save your hard earned money. If you value the information, consider if the magazine offers a digital subscription? You still get the information, but not the clutter. This option not only reduces guilt and saves you money, it also helps the environment, saves trees, and reduces your carbon footprint. If you do appreciate your paper magazines and read them, then have a box where you collect them and make a commitment to donate them once or twice per year to keep them from collecting in your home.

Take a few minutes, right now, to be intentional about your decisions around your magazine subscriptions.

I welcome your ideas, thoughts, and questions in the comments below.

Remember you can share your journey with me and others by using hashtag #MarchMicroMinimizing, and tag me on Facebook or Instagram using handle @suzannegouldenILC.

Here’s my Instagram Live talking about magazines!

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