Declutter Books, CDs, and DVDs

Is the accumulation of books, CDs, and DVDs in your home weighing you down? Has your home become a library piled high with hardbacks and paperbacks, old school CDs with shell cases, and a DVD movie museum? There are ways to downsize and minimalize without saying goodbye forever to these beautiful things that provide knowledge, joy, and entertainment. 
books_declutter_minimalize_downsize_organizeFor those interested in donating, here are two nationwide causes to know about
  • Friends of the Public Library (Books, CDs, DVDs) – Libraries everywhere accept donations, some of which are needed as regular inventory, others used to fundraise for library programs. Libraries take current best sellers, classic fiction and non-fiction, books on CD, music CDs in jewel cases, timely non-fiction, large print books, popular or classic DVDs.
  • Prisoners Literature Project (Books) – a San Francisco Bay Area-based non-profit group that provides free books to prisoners across the United States. They’ve been doing it for 30 years! They accept books that help prisoners with language and vocational skills, and inform them about history and culture. The most requested books are dictionaries, how-to books, and books about African-American, Latino, and Native American history and culture.

Resources to sell books, CDs, and DVDs

It’s time to downsize and minimalize.

Step One 

Declutter Books – A home full of books can give a heavy look and feel to a room. Books are lovely, but too many becomes physical and visual clutter. It’s time to lighten up your home…

  • Go to the bookshelf (or piles of books) and pull out those you have read (and not read) that you are willing to let go. Be strong. If you haven’t read it in a year, honestly ask yourself “will I ever?” Also “Can I check this out from a library when I want to read it?”

Step Two 

orgainze_music_cds_bella_organizingDeclutter CDs – You’ve got a fabulous variety of music you’ve collected over the years. Have you outgrown a few? Have your tastes evolved? Prep the CD player, it’s time to listen to music you’ve forgotten.

  • Glance through the collection, one CD at a time. Set aside those you are willing to donate or sell. Set to another side ones you’re on the fence about. These are the ones to listen to now.
  • When you’ve finalized what to keep, organize the collection by genre and/or alphabetical order.
  • Go a step further and remove the CD and insert, and place inside a CD/DVD organizer case like the one in the photo. This is my personal collection of over 200 CDs, which I dealt with last year after years of storing. These are CDs to keep, so I’m not going to worry about resale value and holding onto the jewel case.
  • Look into music streaming services such as Pandora, Spotify, Apple Music, and prevent CD clutter from entering the home again.

Step Three 

Declutter DVDs – You’ve got favorites and holiday classics you enjoy watching year after year. If you’re going to keep movies forever, there’s no need to keep the space-hogging case. If you can care less about the movie or are willing to stream or check it out from a library, let it go.

  • Glance through the DVD collection and remove those to donate or sell.
  • When you’ve finalized what to keep, organize the collection by genre and/or alphabetical order. It’s faster to do this while they are in cases.
  • Next, remove DVDs from individual cases and consolidate inside a CD/DVD organizer.

With time and courage, you will also go through your record album collection! Keep them in their covers and sleeves. It feels good to be uncluttered.

Bella_Organizing_Best_Professional_Organizers_San_Francisco_Oakland_Berkeley_silicon_valley_montereyIsabella Guajardo, founder and owner of Bella Organizing, is a San Francisco Bay Area professional organizer offering home organizing, interior redesign, and residential move management services throughout the Greater San Francisco Bay Area. Call (510) 229-7321 or email for more information. Gift certificates are available.

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