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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Declutter without guilt!
Sometimes all you need is a swift kick in the ...

Discardia is the holiday that is set up to provide it to you. The book is divided into four sections with a series of small steps to get you moving in the right direction. Overwhelmed by all your stuff? Take a 45 minute walk around a room and put things away, or decide what to discard , or put things up in a...
Published on November 26, 2011 by Kelli

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Gives Permission
Sanders is great at giving permission as to how we can all live a less cluttered life. A lesson I needed to learn as someone who loves to collect books. "Discardia" gave me ways to think about how I could not worry about forgetting the precious things I take from my friends, the books, and how I could also make sure to keep plenty of space in my small apartment...
Published 6 months ago by Neil Hirsch


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Declutter without guilt!, November 26, 2011
This review is from: Discardia: More Life, Less Stuff (Paperback)
Sometimes all you need is a swift kick in the ...

Discardia is the holiday that is set up to provide it to you. The book is divided into four sections with a series of small steps to get you moving in the right direction. Overwhelmed by all your stuff? Take a 45 minute walk around a room and put things away, or decide what to discard , or put things up in a "I'll decide later" box. Can't manage to get around to doing the really important stuff? Make a list and prioritize. For the most part, the suggestions are helpful in breaking tasks down to manageable segments. Also the author mostly manages to avoid preachy or self-righteous proclamations on how things should be done (the segment on weight loss and control could take metabolic rates into account instead of the rather simplistic discussion, but that is one step out of many). If one task seems too daunting, there are others that will help.

Perhaps my only complaint is that the book seems to assume that people exist in a vacuum: when deciding what to get rid of, I want to trash or give away my wedding gown because it takes up too much space, while my husband thinks we should hold on to it forever. A discussion on how to avoid conflict over stuff would be helpful for anyone who is married and/or has kids.

I would recommend this book with one warning: it is set up to help you simplify and streamline your life to allow for more productivity, time to complete what you really want in life, and as the author says, "awesomess" - so do not read the whole thing in one or two sittings. I read it before bed over a couple of weeks, and still felt rather overwhelmed at the end. If you buy it to improve your life (instead of getting it to review), take it slow and it will really help break down the large projects into manageable steps. Overall, I think it can be very helpful.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Clear, helpful, motivating!, December 11, 2011
By 
lucky (CA, United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Discardia: More Life, Less Stuff (Paperback)
This book is helpful, motivating, chummy, and wise.
Most Americans I know of could stand to read this book and put its concepts to work for themselves.
I found it smarter, more helpful, and less complicated than books like 'Getting Things Done.'

Everybody needs this kind of help, not just hoarders and the organization-handicapped. I'm pretty damn organized and efficient, but I found lots of helpful tips and motivators here.
We need to let go of some of our crap periodically to keep our baggage light.

Helpfully, the author knows when you need a kick in the butt and when you need a gentle pep talk, and she provides them for you. She understands how you can get mired in procrastination and indecision.

If you can't hire to author to whip your frazzled butt into shape, her book is the next best thing.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring me to make changes, November 7, 2011
By 
Stringy (Carlisle, WA Australia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Discardia: More Life, Less Stuff (Paperback)
I read the Kindle version of this book after seeing the author's site and tweets online. Sanders has a friendly writing style, no lecturing or preaching, just good advice that's worked for her and other people with more ambition than time.

It's not just about cleaning the clutter from your spare room. She wants you to make the changes that are right for you, slowly but surely moving towards the life you want and away from the life that just happened while you weren't looking. With that goal in mind, she gives advice and examples that have worked for other people dealing with similar problems, some thoughts on how we end up with these problems and suggestions for how to maintain better habits in the future.

I found that the tips and suggestions seemed really appropriate for my life, unlike some other books and websites focused on ruthless decluttering and an endless routine of chores. Sanders' upbeat attitude was catching, and since finishing the book last week I've decluttered my wardrobe, reorganised the pantry to put frequently used things at waist level, and begun taking the stairs at work each day. None of this feels like a hassle, just like a smart choice I can make on the spur of the moment.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Discardia - a new way to live, October 2, 2011
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I stumbled upon the Discardia blog several years ago, and loved the year of One Discardia Tip a Day. Here Dinah Sanders has put it all together in a book form and I couldn't be more pleased. Unlike some of the other unclutter books, Discardia really focuses on its purpose: more life, less stuff. The stuff isn't a problem in and of itself, but it gets in the way of living our lives in a more open, satisfying way. I love that this book puts it all together, and I intend to go back to implementing at least three tips a week. I know it will make a difference. Now I'm just waiting for the print version to give to some family and friends.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful read, like a conversation with the author, January 26, 2012
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I agree with all the reviews who describe the book as engaging, purposeful, motivating, and enjoyable! Reading it felt like I was having a cup of tea with the author. Interesting that it's defined in the self-help genre. I suppose it is, but it certainly doesn't feel like a softer version of Dr. Phil! Absolutely delightful, but more importantly, thought-provoking, and, did I mention, motivating? The book has inspired me in more ways than I have room to describe, from getting rid of clothes that are no longer my style, but too expensive to let them go (I did!!!), to completely remaking my home office by replacing the bedroom furniture I used to "make-do" with functional, attractive home office furniture (cost less than $150). I'm amazed at the increased productivity that has come from working in an office that fits my style of working, as well as my personality. I'm a well-organized person, but the memories associated with "stuff" made me hang onto it. Dinah helped me see that I could maintain the memories without needing to keep the accompanying items. For example, I had a thick file of Playbills and programs from concerts and artistic events. I wrote an email to my husband and kids, asking them to go down memory lane with me as I listed each of the events with dates and comments. Now that I have a one-page list in a file on my computer, I was able to throw away a 6-inch thick file folder of paper that had no importance beyond the memories it evoked. I don't mean to sound gushy, but this book has helped me see how the stuff I have accumulated was blocking my path to the life I want to live. Consequently, I've changed the name of my "to-do" list to my "to-be" list.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome, September 30, 2011
This book is really great. I thought it was both funny and engaging and it is clearly thought provoking. We spend so much effort on accumulation, it is really fun to think hard about how the other side of that process can lead to a better path forward. Thank you very much Ms. Sanders for such a thoughtful read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just about decluttering., April 16, 2012
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This review is from: Discardia: More Life, Less Stuff (Paperback)
There are so many mediocre (or worse) books out there on this or that that I'll admit, one of the reasons I picked this up was I figured "Only $2.99 for the Kindle edition? What the heck." But now I'm seriously considering ordering the paperback as well. This is a fabulous little (and enjoyably written) book. Not just about decluttering, but about managing life in general.

The part that was most helpful to me was the introduction to the idea that substantial progress didn't depend on needing big, long-term goals. "Leaning the boat in the direction you want to go" by asking "what do I want more of in my life?" and "what do I want less of in my life?" -- making small changes in those directions, letting them guide small decisions, and re-evaluating the questions periodically -- can accumulate into transformational change over time. As someone who's always had difficulty figuring out where I'm trying to get to in my life, this was phenomenally helpful. (I know now that plenty of others have covered this idea, but this book was my introduction to it).

I was looking for a book on decluttering my stuff, and I received something far more helpful. (It has lots of good information and suggestions that have helped with my decluttering efforts, as well.)
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent advice on lightening your load, December 21, 2011
This review is from: Discardia: More Life, Less Stuff (Paperback)
I'll start this by saying I don't generally read self help books/life instruction manuals, etc. There isn't usually much by ways of entertainment or relaxation to be found in them, and I tend to read for pleasure rather than under the guise of grand self improvement. But a manual for cutting out the junk/baggage in my life seemed interesting, as I've been steadily working on that for the last few years (Books don't count against me in my ideal minimalistic world. I should point out that they are actually what I own the most of, but I enjoy them...) So I took on Discardia to read, to see if there were handy tips/hints (there are. And all is addressed with a sense of humour, which helps to alleviate the whole notion of reading a self help type book.)

The book is presented as a series of symptoms with the appropriate treatment/cure or problem/solution, and had plenty of examples of ways to implement new habits, and break old ones. For a self help type book, it was a pretty fun read, and had some very useful advice in clearing out emotional baggage and promoting healthier ideas on handling a variety of stress inducements.

My only complaint is that the book felt long. It isn't that it was overly wordy or dragged it's feet; it just felt long. (I feel like the Emperor in Amadeus "too many notes.") This could be attributed to how I read the book (in 2 sittings) because it goes over similar ideas/ solutions repeatedly (repetition being key to retaining information and creating a new healthy habit.) Overall, though, this is an excellent book for anyone looking for ideas on how to lighten their life's load of baggage, both accumulated physical items, and mental baggage that goes with it.

Overall rating: 4 stars
Review copy supplied through LibraryThing's Member Giveaway Program.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Many books on simplification are good, but Discardia is awesome!, October 16, 2014
When I first came upon this book, I was ambivalent about its title. Neither its format nor the author’s writing style appealed to me. Yet, as I previewed the book, I noticed it had some interesting ideas. So I bought the book and I am glad I did. Discardia contributed more to simplifying my life and enhancing its value than almost any other book I had read on simplifying life.

Discardia took me several months to complete because it was about a different way of life. It is a “practice as you go along” book. I was interested in simplification, but for Dinah Sanders that is only a part of the equation. She asks the reader not just to get rid of stuff but also to replace it with “awesomeness.” To simplify one’s life and add awesomeness to it, one needs to follow three core principles: Decide and do, choose quality over quantity, and perpetually upgrade your life. Sanders elaborates these three principles in three different sections with 41 specific suggestions.

DECIDE AND DO. This part of the book provides guidelines for getting rid of stuff in your life that doesn’t add value any more: emails, all things you saved from your past, kitchen stuff, closet stuff, “just in case” stuff, and mental junk such as anger, resentment and depression.

QUALITY OVER QUANTITY. This part discusses how, as we discard a huge quantity of unwanted stuff, we can replace it with quality stuff that we love and use. Sanders provides specific guidelines as to how to do this while overcoming mental barriers such as procrastination, hesitation and indecision. The suggestions range from replacing junk in your closet with quality items all the way to replacing mental junk with feelings and attitudes that make you awesome.

PERPETUAL UPGRADE. This part is about bringing balance and joy to your life as much as enhancing the quality of the stuff you use everyday. It is in this part of the book it becomes obvious that Sanders is not just talking about living with less stuff (an admirable aim in itself), but about an awesome way of life built on the foundation of a simplified life.

It is clear the author did not just set out to write a book because she could, but thought through, test drove and lived through the ideas she discusses in the book. The book is not written in a hurry but probably over a long period of time. One is constantly surprised at range of ideas she presents in the book. The ideas are easy to implement and produce immediate results. I also liked the fact that the author is an active part of modern life (as opposed some of the writers on simplification who live a sort of semi-withdrawn life) so I could easily relate to her.

I was initially interested in simplification but not in being “awesome,” but by the time I finished reading the book, I began to see how attention to awesomeness supports simplification. Dinah Sanders presents a philosophy of life with simplification as the foundation and awesomeness as the edifice.

I have read several books on simplification. Many of them are good, but Discardia is awesome.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book! Took lots away from it, October 8, 2013
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This book has the normal common sense things one might do to simplify one's life. However, the book goes above and beyond including behaviors and mind set to really simplify one's life. However, it is not just about simplification; its about emphasizing the things that are most important to you, while minimizing or letting go of the things that are not. Does a decent job of helping one to recognize the difference.
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Discardia: More Life, Less Stuff
Discardia: More Life, Less Stuff by Dinah Sanders (Paperback - October 7, 2011)
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