Books...and extraneous paper. Books are a separate issue altogether. I mean, I love books, and minimizing books is going to be a real challenge, so like any high-functioning guy, I plan to put that issue off to the absolute last minute.
That leaves us with paper as the challenge for today. Since my wife (of almost 3 months) is returning from a week long work trip to Hawaii tonight at 10:00 p.m. I feel the need to straighten up the house some. I don't have a lot of time to work on minimizing paper, so I won't try to do it all, but I can do something. Like we say in trail running, just keep forward momentum.
Okay, where to begin?
When I cleaned up and minimized the office I gathered all the paper I could in some boxes. This is what I ended up with...
Not too bad, right? But I suspect that almost none of this is stuff we need. And if there are important papers in these boxes, we'd never know. So, what's the best way to tackle this? One box at a time is my answer.
Simple steps. Move a reasonable amount of paper into the now clean kitchen so it can be quickly looked through and decisions can be made...
- Action (needs to be dealt with - includes bills)
- File (needs to be kept)
- Reading (magazines, papers and stuff Kate might want to look at)
- Shred (receipts or things with personal data)
The rules on the sort:
- Pick up one piece of paper at a time.
- See what it is and decide quickly what to do with it.
- Don't slow down.
- Do yoga after every box (I added this one so I get some kind of workout in today.)
If you look online there are numerous methods of sorting paper and getting organized, but in the end it comes down to knowing what things are. Many of us are stackers. We pick things up, say the mail for instance, carry it around and stack it someplace. Eventually, we forget what is in the stack and then the stack gets moved wholesale and more stuff comes in and gets stacked on the stack. Truthfully, it is just clutter and it is weighing us down... weighing me down.
Here's the yoga mat setup for the advanced minimizing-yoga-practitioner...
Nothing complicated in all this, and my plan for the day is to work on the paper sort, do yoga, and then clean the house up a bit before heading to the airport.
I will report back the results at the end of the day. And don't forget to sign up as a member and get a chance at winning The Power of Less.