A Guide to Simplifying Your Life: Part Three
Hello! Welcome to the third step of the KonMari method!
So the third category to tidy is paper. Paper can be tricky! For me, a fresh adult who's only filed taxes three times, never gets mail, and keeps most of her files online, I didn't have much paper to clear. For other busier adultier people who have tons of papers and no time to organize, I can see how this step is incredibly valuable. Paper also covers a lot of bases, here are some things to include in your paper tidying:
- office supplies like sticky notes/loose leaf paper
- important documents (tax records/certificates/passports/loan documents/etc.)
- school assignments or papers
- business cards/takeout menus
You'll never believe how many manuals I found shoved in my desk drawers, including one from a Tomogachi. Remember to take all of your papers out of their normal places and go through them. Obviously most papers, like bills and junk mail, can't really spark joy, so when you're going through your papers only keep what is important, awaiting action, or can't be accessed online. A tip when you're going through your papers is if you're iffy about getting rid of anything like receipts or old assignments is to take photos/scan and save them to your computer or an app like Google Photos.
Some things you can throw away automatically are:
- out of date warranties
- bank statements (and sign up to get them online!!!)
- junk mail or weird magazines you never signed up to get
- all bills- if you haven't paid it yet, take care of that immediately and then throw it away, if you've already paid it shred it or toss it and move on.
- old assignments- I promise you that unless you're writing essays by hand (stop it) you don't need the hard copy of your assignments. If you're keeping it because of your professor's feedback, take a picture or scan it and save it electronically.
Keep only what you HAVE to have!
Find a space for everything. If you don't have a space for it why are you keeping it? I recommend storing all of your important documents in a Trapper Keeper/folder/binder that's divided by category so you always know where your important documents are. This is NOT a place for receipts! Scan those puppies in!
This is also a great time to clean out all your paper/pens/highlighters you never use and organize all your supplies. Celebrate yourself if you're following along! This is a hard and time consuming thing to do, but once you're finally done and all that paper clutter is gone you will feel so much peace. I honestly use my desk so much more since I have space and papers aren't popping out of every direction.
I hope this gives you some motivation to simplify your space. Clearing out papers you don't need is so therapeutic, I promise you'll feel less stressed knowing your home is in order, your bills are paid, and crinkly receipts aren't hiding in all your drawers. Good luck and happy tidying!