When I wasn't making any progress in my attempt to throw things away and I was feeling pretty discouraged, I finally humbled myself and asked my dad for his assistance. If you know how my dad is about throwing things away, then you would know that this was a big step for me, because he throws pretty much everything away. He is the antithesis of a pack-rat.
So, he reasoned with me that I should throw away all my notes from classes and that I should even get rid of old text books, unless I had reason to believe that I would ever be needing them or using them again. He said he saved one text book from his college days that he really liked, but even that he never looked at. His reasoning for getting rid of so much is that we live in an information age where pretty much anything can be found on the internet, or the library, and most textbooks become obsolete within a few years anyway.
So, that helped me to throw away a LOT of notes quickly without even thinking twice or regretting it (I haven't regretted it yet, and I don't plan on it!). It also helped me to get rid of my geology text book which I had contemplated keeping since I had enjoyed that class so much.
Then I came up with a little criterion of my own for throwing away notes to talks at church and devotionals and such. My dad had already convinced my to throw away (or send to the recycling) my Ensigns that I had been collecting, under the reasoning that they can all be found online, hence there is no need for me to be collecting them. When I turned to my notes I thought, I haven't looked over these recently, if at all, and if they meant a lot to me I should have or could have written about them in my journal. So, that enabled me to send them to the recycling without any pain. They have served their purpose, as have the rest of my notes, and must no longer add to my clutter.
When I see how much I have been able to eliminate, I feel that a burden is being lifted. I'm finally accomplishing what I've been wanting to do for so long. It will soon be done with, never to hold me back again, and I will be able to move on to other things.
Some things I wrote down to help me stay on track with my purging:
Feel good and don't look back