Day 12: Paper Piles
Updated: Apr 23
30 Day Spring Cleaning Challenge!
Raise your hand if you feel like papers are breeding in boxes when you're not looking!
You're not alone! Thousands of papers come into our hands each year, so it's easy for them to take over if we're not diligent about managing them.
Add in backlogs the build up when we deal with disease, depression or getting family papers when relatives pass, and it can truly feel like we're drowning.
To clear all the papers is a HUGE One Thing for some people, but in this challenge we're taking manageable bite-sized chunks...
So today choose one pile of papers to go through and thoroughly clear. If you have papers all over, gather the ones around your favorite sitting area into a pile,
Pull up containers for garbage, recycling and maybe shred, set aside distractions, then go through and make decisions about each piece of paper. Yes, every single one you touch.
PAPER ORGANIZING TIPS:
~ Pre-sort + categorize: make a first pass through to pull out anything that's trash, recycling or shred (put them right into containers so they don't get shuffled). Also put papers into larger categories (ie: taxes, health, etc.). Make one very clear pile of "to-dos."
~ Two Minute Rule: after the pre-sort, turn to the to do pile. Find papers with things you can take care of in two minutes or less and do it now (pay a bill, switch a bill to auto pay, make an appointment, make a call...). After you do it, put the paper where it needs to go (labeled file folder, recycling, shred...).
~ OHIO: Only Handle It Once - see if you can make a decision now rather than having to deal with it later.
~ Focus: Many people come to me saying they think they have adult onset ADD or ADHD. This may be the case, but you can help your brain out::
turn off all notifications and distractions
telling everyone in the house you're busy for at least 30 minutes (or as long as possible)
focus 100% on doing what it takes to get through this pile
~ Flow: Let yourself get into the flow. The longer you set aside to do this the better.
One woman in my guided paper organizing program spent about 12 hours in 2 days going through papers! She set herself up for success with containers and no distractions, then let herself focus. (She also had all the tips and resources from my Tame the Paper Monster program, private calls and 5 Weeks to Freedom with me.)
Yes, you might have 100 piles, or one continuous pile, but what can you do today to put a dent in this?
If you're really struggling with papers and want help, I can help! See the note below...
Regardless of where you are with papers, choose one pile today and go through it thoroughly. Post questions and challenges on the TidyWild Facebook page or reach out to me in an email or text: SpringCourtright@TidyWild.com / 360.265.2477.
Ready, set, go!
And, as always, if this doesn't speak to you, choose your own One Thing to do to make this day better and brighter :)
If you want help, here are options:
- My online program Tame the Paper Monster has step-by-step, printable/downloadable guides on how to clear, organize and cut back on incoming papers. I've researched what to keep and for how long, the most important papers to keep safe, and how to cut junk mail. It has ALL the steps I've taken with clients and myself. Click here to learn more.
- TidyWild Membership includes Tame the Paper Monster through April 2 (Friday!) in addition to 2 group support calls with me every month, check-ins and tips from me, and a new organizing lesson each month. In one year we'll get through everything in your house, including the garage and home office. Click here to learn more.
It's time to tame the paper monster, and I'm here to help!