If you’re like most us, everyday we’re inundated with papers. They come non-stop and seemly from everywhere… our mailbox, our office, our events and so on and so on.
It’s not uncommon to feel like you’re drowning in paper and if you’re like most people every little bit of added paper keeps pulling you under.
And the major cause of paper pile ups is failing to process them in a timely manner. Most often they’re set aside with the thinking “I’ll just set it here for now and get back to it later” and when does “later” arrive? Tomorrow? Next week? Next month?
The most effective way to prevent papers from piling up is to process them now!
Purple Durple to the rescue! I’m tossing you a life R.A.F.T.
Process every piece of paper as soon as it comes into your life in the following way and you’ll forever stay afloat.
1.) Read it
If it’s important enough to read, read it now!
Avoid setting it aside to get to it later and process it now.
Do you think you’ll have more time later? The reality is that the busier you become, the less time you’ll have later.
This critical first step will not only eliminate the paper piles, but will save you countless hours trying to catch up with it later.
2.) Act on it
Every piece of paper requires you to make a decision.
What action is required from this information? Is it a billing statement you need to pay? Pay it. Is it information for an upcoming event? Schedule it. Will you need this in the future? File it.
Make a decision and act on it. The more you practice making a decision now, the easier and faster it becomes.
3.) File it or Toss it
Finally, after you’ve made a decision and taken action on that piece of paper, either file it or toss.
Be diligent when filing though… 80-90% of everything that gets filed never gets looked at again.
Do you really need to keep that piece of paper? Keep in mind most information can be obtained electronically or digitally. Cut down on filing and consider scanning it if you feel the need to keep it.
Most often you can toss it into the recycle bin or shred it.
I’d love to hear the ways you reduce paper piles?
Please submit your comments!