Conquering the Influx of Mail – Paper
Written by Alison Kero
Mail accumulation has become a huge problem with most people not devoting enough time to properly go through their mail in a timely fashion. It can lead to checks never being found, an overload of paper in your home or office or worse, identity...
One of the reasons mail has become a hindrance is because there is simply too much of it. How much of your incoming paper mail is simply junk mail? Are you constantly getting mail from your financial institutions with blank checks or credit card offers? These are great if you need them, but could also be a huge liability. If your mail is stolen, you could very easily have your identity stolen. In a quick moment, you all of a sudden owe thousands of dollars that someone else spent. It’s also a great way to stop yourself from being tempted to spend money you don’t have. To easily opt out of these credit card offers once and for all visit this site to learn how: http://creditcards.lovetoknow.com/Request_Stopping_Offer_Credit_Card
Magazines are also a huge source of incoming mail. How many magazines can you truly read in 1 month? Do you find you are constantly behind on reading? Do you keep them thinking, “one day I’ll get to this?” I have one client who kept thinking he was going to get through a pile of dental magazines…. From 1985! Keep a strict limit on how many magazines you receive monthly, I limit myself to 8 for both personal and professional because I know that’s how many I can handle per month without feeling overwhelmed or getting behind. I also promptly move my magazine to the recycle bin after I receive the latest issue. If I see an article I want to keep, I tear out the article and toss the rest of the magazine, which saves a ton of space. Contact magazines you no longer read and ask them to remove you from their list. Contact companies who send you their catalogues and ask them to remove you from their list. You can almost always find their catalogue online.
Keep your shredder near the front door. If you keep the shredder far from where you place your mail, it becomes more difficult to shred unwanted mail as easily. Go through your mail immediately! Most people don’t deal with the mail right away and it grows into a large and often unmanageable pile. If you sort immediately and place all items you wish to keep in a basket, then you can immediately shred anything you know is waste. If you receive a ton of unwanted mail and wish to cut down on it, send a postcard or letter to Mail Preference Service, Direct Marketing Association, PO Box 643, Carmel, NY 15012-0643 Include your complete name, address, zip code and a request to "activate the preference service". For up to five years, this will stop mail from all member organizations that you have not specifically ordered products from.
If you are comfortable, have your financial companies send you their invoices, bills and other information via e-mail. You can then easily create a folder for that mail, set payments up automatically and quickly lower the amount of time you spend paying bills and collecting paper.
Figuring out what papers are actually important and which ones can be tossed can be stressful. What if you toss something you actually needed? What do I need and what can I part with? The easiest way to figure this out is to turn to this site: http://www.bankrate.com/brm/news/bank/19990714a.asp which will tell you exactly what you need to keep and toss.
Once a year, at minimum all your paper items should be weeded through and anything that is no longer needed should be tossed or shredded. You can always create different filing systems if the one you currently have in place isn’t working for you. Do colors help you remember which files are kept where? Use colors! Does the name of a file throw you? Change it to something that works better.
Constantly assess what paper is coming into your home and whether or not you truly need it. After awhile, it becomes easier to figure out what you truly need and want to look at versus what can be dropped from your list of important mail. If you place limits on yourself for what you truly need and want to read, what charities you truly want to give to (versus those who guilted you into donating money) and learn to use the word, “no”, these processes become easier and more manageable for the busy life you lead.
If you have become overwhelmed with the amount of paper you currently have in your home and have no idea on how to start, please contact Alison Kero at 646-831-9625 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can either schedule an at-home or in-office appointment in the NYC metro area or schedule a consultation via telephone to get your time, space and life organized.