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How to reduce paper clutter.

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Oh how I don’t want to write this post! I’m only writing it because it has been specifically requested many times.

Paper is a slobs “natural enemy” And I most definitely don’t have paper “under control” This makes me feel unqualified to speak on the subject.

But… I’ve come a long way. A very long way!

So, I’ve decided to share how I greatly reduced paper clutter in our home. Notice I said reduced instead of conquered.

Paper no longer makes me want to throw my hands up in despair.

And that’s something!

Oh, and one last thing justification for this post before I give you my tips. I’ve asked my family members if my struggle with paper clutter is better than it used to be. They said it‘s WAY better!!

So, here is how I’ve significantly reduced paper clutter in our home over the past few years.

1 I’ve become ruthless. Heartless.

Seriously. That sentimental part of my heart that once wanted to keep a spelling test… it died!

My kids know the routine. I look at their papers, give them some words of affirmation, and then pitch them.

If something is extra creative and artistic, it goes in a certain box in my office.

2 I follow the one touch rule with mail.

When I get the mail, I walk straight to the trash/recycle bin. I go ahead and throw away anything I don’t need.

Distinguishing what I need from what I don’t need has become easier the more I do this. I don’t want to refinance our home, I don’t want a new credit card, and don’t want to change electric providers. I know that, so I go ahead and get rid of that stuff.

Simply heading straight to the trash can from the mail box has greatly reduced our paper clutter.

3 Go digital

We were some of the last people we knew to start paying bills on line. I’m not sure why we thought it was a hassel to set up, but we did. It took a while but over time, we’ve taken advantage of the options to not receive paper copies of most of our bills.

If your not doing this yet, ask your bank to help you get set up and show you how to do it. They want people to go digital. I have noticed that on certain paper statements, you can be charged up to 3$ to get the paper statements! Ouch!

4 Opt out of stuff.

Over time, as we get various paper statements I’ll look to see if they have an option to switch to email statements. There are also various ways to get yourself off of mailing lists.

There you go! Thats how I’ve tamed the paper monster in our home. I have tried various filing systems over the years, but they’ve never lasted more than a month or so.

My new philosophy is that I’m okay with having fewer pieces of paper to search through when we have lost something.

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