I'll let clients keep anything as long as they can make a good argument for it. Recently I was working with a massage therapist who did just that. She was doing a marvelous job of letting things go from file drawers, tote bags, and the desktop. Even in sessions like these, where the recycling bags are filling fast, we can still be left with a pile of things that are somewhat useful or interesting, but leave us scratching our heads. In this case, she didn't know what to do with a new 2012 planner, an ad for a local green housecleaner, and a handful of interesting articles and recipes. Here's her brilliant idea: she suggested we create a basket of "grab bag" type items and articles that sits out in her massage waiting room. Anything in there is up for grabs to her clients who are passing through. It's no longer cluttering up her space and there's a good feeling that one man's trash is another man's treasure. It's also a nice addition to the waiting room, giving her regulars something to look forward to.
This works well for anyone who has a waiting area. We agreed that anything left in there for more than a couple of weeks must go, keeping the basket fresh.