[A collaboration post – all thoughts are my own.]
For years, I have been struggling with paper clutter. No matter how many times I reduce paper clutter, they will pile up again after a month or a week. The worst was during college because I took part in many campus activities and had to deal with a lot of paper every day. I remember at that time my room was so full of paper that I didn’t know what to do with the paper any more!
Paper clutter can easily feel like it’s overtaking your home if you don’t have strategies in place or the proper tools to help you deal with it all. Paper seems small as a single sheet, but those sheets add up to a stack of clutter like you’ve never seen!
Reduce Paper Clutter When Working Remotely
You’re overwhelmed by the stacks of papers in your home and you don’t know where to even start to get rid of them. Paper clutter can be challenging, but with these simple tips, you’ll be able to reduce paper clutter now and forever!
Shred anything with confidential information
I have a lot of papers filled with personal stuff, mostly related to my translation services or other businesses. If you’re holding on to papers you want to throw away but don’t because you’re worried about privacy, buy a shredder. I just bought a shredder so I can reduce paper clutter easily at home.
Throw out old papers
Well, if you always think that the paper “might be important”, you won’t be able to reduce paper clutter. Your old papers might not look that important, but they add weight to your boxes when you organize. Make sure you go through which old papers you really need to keep and no longer needed, or they will just stack up each year.
Scan what you can
I have my identification card, license card, and family card scanned so I don’t need to keep them in paper form. Sometimes when I need to sign up for something official, I just need to open my phone or computer to find out the information I want. You don’t need an expensive scanner, because there are also apps that use the camera on your smartphone as a scanner.
Pay bills online
The best and easiest way to reduce paper clutter is to keep it from coming into your house in the first place. Switch all of your bills, payments, receipts, etc. in digital form. Personally, I never received my bills in paper form because all of them are sent directly to my e-mail inbox. Switch to online bill pay and paperless billing if you haven’t already. The bonus of this is you will no longer need envelopes and stamps or trips to the mailbox.
Recycle bulk mail
If you’re keeping old magazines like me because you don’t want to throw them but you don’t know the proper way to dispose of them, take a few minutes to research the recycling rules where you live. Just knowing what can be recycled and where to bring it can spur you into action.
Once you’ve recycled, you’ll have less to declutter and organize at home. Schedule time to declutter every few weeks or months, but also try to be more discerning about what you save on a daily basis. Most of the paper that I keep is related to my job as a manual translator because I usually print important documents such as NDAs or agreements with clients. Although it can be saved online, but I prefer to save it in printed form.
If your desk is covered in papers that you need to deal with soon but not right away, designate a place just for them. This could be an accordion folder or a simple box. I bought, like, 3-4 boxes only to store papers that I might need later. If color coding helps, choose certain colors for specific categories for each document.
Do you still have problems with paper clutter? Or have you already switched everything to digital form? Share with me your tips to reduce paper clutter below.