I really never thought I’d be the type of person who had a collection of eBooks. I’ve always loved my books. That child who would sit in the corner and read over pretty much anything else on offer? Yeah, that was me. As I got older, they became my teachers, my escape, my best friends. The feeling of being curled up in bed with a book in your lap can rarely be beaten. So naturally, when I decided that I was going digital, I was surprised at how happy I was with the change.
I realised that I was always ordering my books online because it was cheaper. Yes, as usual,
cheap frugal mama strikes again. When I began to think about the consequences of this decision, I’d feel a bit regretful about my purchase.
First off, the sites I was ordering from were overseas. When I ordered from an Australian company, they were having the book sent over so really, it didn’t make a difference. I try so hard to source my food locally to avoid food miles adding up, yet here I was ordering a book and having it flown over? It made no sense.
Secondly, I try to live with tiny house principles in mind. When we do finally purchase our new home, the tiny way of thinking will be moving with us. This means that while I will always look upon libraries and rows of bookshelves with love in my eyes, they really do not have their place in our smaller household. A little bookshelf with favourite titles, library books or books that are rotated occasionally? Sure! Not the reach the ceiling type of bookshelves I have the potential to fill.
Are there downsides?
There were also things that I worried about when buying eBooks. What if my device dies? The file could be corrupted? I could lose all my files! At the end of the day, I know what my reading habits are like. I read a book. Then I reread a book. Followed by me writing down the information that I value and want to remember, and then the book ends up on the shelf. If I do this with hard copy books, chances are I will end up doing the same with eBooks. At least then I wouldn’t of spent as much, and they won’t take up the same room while they are not being used.
I still go to second hand book stores. I love that little thrill of rescuing a dusty old book from the shelves and paying next to nothing for it at the same time. It certainly will take some getting used to. I have a bookshelf full of my books, and it will take me a while before I can find new homes for them. For now though, eBooks and my tablet have become my new bookshelf.
Going digital in other ways
Once I had made the transition to eBooks, I realised that going digital had its benefits in other areas of my life.
- Instead of printing off worksheets, I edited the PDFs so that they could be used on the computer.
- CDs were replaced with mp3s (I’m a 90s kid, yes, I still had CDs).
- Swapping a Netflix account for most of our DVDs.
- Keeping an online journal rather than a handwritten one (though I still brainstorm on paper, it’s just how I work).
- Changed paper bills to be emailed to me.
A small part of me worries that I’ll lose everything, so I have “digital clutter” (I save everything on multiple devices). It has helped to free up the stacks of paper clutter that I did have and I feel that little bit better for cutting back on paper waste.
Going digital has not only helped me reduce my stress and waste but I’ve also saved money. Not bad for a seemingly small switch!