Tips for eliminating paper clutter
Try some of these strategies and feel your paper-stress starting to dissolve:
- Tackle paperwork in a designated spot, so it does not end up all over your house!
- Get yourself in the habit of doing this every day, if at all possible. Piles = delayed decisions!
- Designate a consistent mail management station, ideally with recycle, shredder (or a temporary storage container to be moved to shredder), and some sort of sorting system.
- Include baskets or a file sorter labeled accordingly to accommodate speed sorting:
- folder for each member of the family
- a critical pile
- to be paid
- reference reading/entertainment such as magazine/catalogs
- whatever else makes sense to your world!
Keep things in the place where you are most likely to use them
- Although you may have a perfectly great home office…. if it's not handy and in the main flow of your home, it may not work for you to attempt to go through your mail there.
- Command center in your kitchen – having all you need nearby. Pens, paper envelopes, thank you notes, stamps, return address labels, calendar for quick viewing.
Filing Strategies – basics
- Fewer categories are better! How many times have you been unable to decode your own filing systems?
- Your categories should make sense to YOU!
- Modular filing can work well for some…medical, business, financial, permanent files, taxes, school files, special interests, in their own distinct containers.
- You need to purge – yes this is riveting work, but necessary!
- Wherever possible, separate Active files from Archival...and store Active in an easy to reach spot. Archival can be more out of the way.
- Using uniform, printed labels makes retrieval much easier on the eye.
Is the paper in YOUR life taking over?
I regularly work with clients to get their paper under control and develop systems for moving forward. I’ve whipped many a home office into shape and can help you set up a functional and efficient command center if that’s where the paperwork needs to land!
I’d love to work with you to restore order to your paper-cluttered surfaces! – or in any room that needs attention. Never worked with a professional organizer before? It’s not as scary as it sounds – just call me to discuss any projects you’re considering. We can chat, strategize, and see if we’re a good fit. The call is complimentary – so you have nothing to lose.