Paralyzed by Paper



After walking into two homes covered in paper last week, I thought it’s time to write about mail once again. You’d think that mail shouldn’t be an issue or wouldn’t be an issue anymore with our technology to go paperless, but there are still several people that struggle with mail coming through their front door.  Each home saw eight, yes eight garbage bags of paper find their way into the recycling bin. Only one small one inch thick stack of paper was kept as permanent records or tax records that needed to be filed or scanned in.

So what did I do? Glad you asked. This was my process and you’re welcome to follow it yourself.

First, I went through all the backlog of mail. I zipped open hundreds of envelopes. Obvious junk mail was tossed without even opening them. Several paper cuts were encountered J

Second, I kept one bill of every type (for example Com Ed, Verizon, etc) and one statement (Chase Checking, Mortgage Statement, BCBSIL Explanation of Benefits) of every type.

Third, myself or the client started logging into the website of each and every bill vendor and statement vendor. When an account needed to be created, we would set one up and record all usernames and passwords.

Fourth, each bill was made paperless and autopay

Fifth, each statement was turned onto paperless or an e-statement.

Lastly, one household was inundated with mail from charity asking for money. We counted about thirty five different charities. Guess what we did? We called each one and removed the address from the charity mailing list.

You may be thinking, all of that is a lot of work. And yes you’re right. It took a while and was very tedious work. But I’ll tell you the pay off. No bills will be late, less mail will come through the front door, and I’ve equipped them to maintain organization without me. I wouldn’t be a good organizer if I just “cleaned up the mail piles”. We need to get to the root of the paper problem as organizers and here’s how…. STOP THE PAPER FROM COMING IN by just a click online!

Amber Kostelny

Amber’s Organizing, LLC

7401 W. Howard St

Chicago, IL 60631

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