We all have at least one pile of papers on the counter, on the desk or on a stray table that we just don’t know what to do with. Have you ever reached the bottom? And who are we kidding: just one pile?!
We’re here to tell you there is a way to reach the bottom — a way to get organized and keep the paper clutter under control in your household. It’s time to create a system.
Your New System
Taming paper clutter requires commitment and daily actions. But once you’ve got a good flow going on, maintaining the Zen doesn’t take long at all!
First, you’ll need to set up a few things. Get a few file folders, a cabinet or file bin, a fire safe, a plastic storage bin and a shredder. You’ll probably want your recycling bin nearby, too.
Next, go through all the scary stacks of papers in your home. Determine if each piece needs to be filed, if you need to take action on it, if it’s a keepsake or important document, or if it’s just time to let it go. Place special schoolwork and artwork into the plastic bin. Birth certificates, insurance information and important items should be kept in the safe, while things like old bills and receipts you wish to keep should get filed. If you have bills to pay or invitations to respond to, put them in a folder or tray that you’ll touch daily. Remember to shred any documents with personal information on them.
Now there is a place for everything, but the key is keeping it that way. Check your mail and open it every day. Touch each piece once and put it where it belongs: to-do tray, recycling or files. Don’t let things pile up the way it used to, and don’t hang on to all those catalogues thinking you might look at them one day. (Just visit the website later if you’re afraid of missing out.)
As schoolwork comes in, determine if it’s keep worthy. And if your children prefers to keep every single thing (whose child doesn’t?), either put everything that comes home in one bin, which you’ll purge at the end of the school year, or sneak it to the outside trash can or recycling bin when no one is looking. (We realize this may require the stealth of a jewel thief, but we have faith in you!)
When you’ve got your system down pat, you’ll be ready to dig a little deeper into the paper clutter issue. Here are a few more ideas for reducing your paper load:
- Go paperless where you can or set up automatic bill pay. This works well for bills, medical notifications, school forms, bank statements, etc.
- Get off junk mailing and catalogue lists.
- Subscribe to digital magazines and newsletters.
- Purge receipts at least every 90 days.
- Scan important documents and save them electronically instead!
Before you know it you’ll have it all under control and on autopilot! But if this sounds a bit overwhelming, contact us to take advantage of our decluttering services. Our expert personal assistants can help you tame the paper clutter in no time and help you create a system that works for your home. Or if you could simply use a few extra hours to set up your system yourself, hire a personal assistant to run your errands for the day! Contact us today to get started!
Errand Works, LLC is a licensed, bonded and insured personal assistance company dedicated to improving quality of life for professionals, caregivers and other busy individuals. Every personal assistant must pass a Virginia State Criminal Background Check prior to being hired. In addition, each personal assistant is a Virginia State Notary. Errand Works currently serves Prince William County and the surrounding areas. Call today to schedule your appointment! You’ll get one hour of service free! (703) 881-1599