Six Types of Books in My Library

What We Can Learn from My Overflowing Bookshelves

I really enjoy books. I like to read them and I like to buy them. My library collection is vast, falling into six categories:

  • Overflowing bookshelves in my libraryWorth Keeping: I enjoyed reading these manuscripts, and I’ll refer to them again.
  • Reference Materials: Some of my books contain information I want to keep at my fingertips.
  • Plan to Read: These works are on my reading list. I really do intend to get to them—someday.
  • Once Was Enough: These books were enjoyable, but one read was sufficient. I’ll never reread them and don’t expect to ever refer to them.
  • Started But Not Finished: Although showing initial promise, these books just didn’t have enough substance to hold my interest. I abandoned them for something more exciting.
  • Seemed Like a Good Idea: These include used books I bought, as well as books given to me and some that just showed up—yeah, it happens. But the one thing they have in common is I’ll never get around to reading them. There are too many more interesting books awaiting my attention.

Our house has four shelving units stuffed with books. In addition, there are more stacks on the floor. I need to take action.

Someday I’ll go through my library, pulling out the ones in the last three categories. They’re simply taking up room, space that more worthy editions deserve.

I may go through the first three groups in my library, too. But if I do, I’ll definitely keep all of my autographed copies—I guess that’s a seventh category.

Oh, and then there are the books on my Kindle, but that’s a different situation—at least until my Kindle runs out of room.

Lessons from My Books

What things do you have just sitting around taking up space and providing no value. It’s time we do some spring-cleaning. Care to join me?

More importantly we need to make sure that who we are and what we do are worth keeping too.

[This is from Peter DeHaan’s newsletter. Sign up to receive the complete newsletter each month via email.]

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