Finding time to deal with clutter is a challenge we all face … and for many, paper is right at the top of the list! As someone who accumulates paper, I keep coming back to that question – “How Do I Deal with All the Paper?”
Here are 3 tips that I have found very helpful, as I work to let go of the paper that can sometimes build up and clutter my workspace.
- I’m a big recycler, and I’ve learned that recycling can be a very helpful intermediate stage in letting go, for me. I put paper that I’m finished with it my recycling box by my desk. There it usually sits for a couple of weeks, until the box is full enough to dispose of. If I haven’t needed one of the pieces of paper that’s in my box in those two weeks, I feel much more comfortable letting go. And if I do need it, in the interim, I know right where to find it!
- A second step that I am considering as an aid to letting go is the idea of scanning certain key documents. Being able to categorize and store things on my computer is new to me, and I’m exploring it with some trepidation! I can see the potential, though. The key here is to make sure that you’ve got a really good backup system. You certainly don’t want to throw out any key documents unless you’re sure that you’ve got them saved and secure and well backed up.
- A third tip that has been helpful for me in letting go has been to remember that even small accomplishments “count.” I try to get rid of a few pieces of paper a day and validate my choices each and every time I let go! This slow, steady progress builds on itself. I am gratified by the results, and am gradually creating new habits for myself!
Is letting go of paper a challenge for you? Are there systems that you have in place to help you with it? Any tips you’d like to share? I know that I, for one, would love to hear!
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© Copyright 2010 Paula Eder, Ph.D.