I Just Gotta Tell Ya
- If all U.S. households received and paid their bills online, it would eliminate more than 800,000 tons of waste each year.
- Harris Interactive reports that 23% of adults say they pay bills late (and incur fees) because they lose them.
- In the United States right now, landfills are filling up and closing at the rate of approximately 2 a day.
- Each year, 100 million trees are used to produce junk mail. Each year, about 100 million households receive 16.6 billion catalogs
About 10 years ago, I was drowning in paper. I worked for a company who believed in mailing, faxing and then emailing every little memo and update. All 6 of my large file cabinets were filled with reports, faxes and paper. At that point- it was time to make a decision and eliminate unneccessary reading, work and paper in my life- better yet GET A LIFE.
So if you are drowning in paper- here is how I did it- in steps-
1.) I set aside 1 hour a week to clean up my office
2.) I took all the scraps of paper of scribbled notes, phone numbers and put it into a To-Do list on my computer.
3.) Purged 1 Filing Cabinet per week of paper and files (yes it was recycled into notepads)
4.) Took 1 day to sign up for paying bills on line
- Set up automatic payments with standard bills i.e. as phone, mortgage etc.
- Opted out of paper statements
5.) Closed down and or stopped using credit cards.
6.) Stopped ordering online from catalogue companies- they eventually stop sending catalogues.
7.) Updated Address Book and put on computer (talk about tedious)
8.) Got rid of fax machine (best thing I ever did!) Office could not send faxes anymore, no more junk faxes.
9.) Bought Scanner, fax, copier combination so can do over Internet- no more paper!
10.) Stopped all magazine and newspaper subscriptions.
- I have room in the home office for a bed! My large U-Shaped desk with 2 work stations and 6 filing cabinets is gone. I now work in 1 desk with only 2 filing drawers!
- It now takes me about 10 minutes per month to pay bills- I used to wait and pay bills every Saturday when they came in- took time, filing, writing check and postage.
- Most of my mail is junk mail now- goal for 2009- eliminate junk mail
- Saved me money- not only in time but postage
- Saved me stress- no more filing, where to put everything.
- Saved me time- especially at the end of the year in doing taxes! Also less cleaning!
Moral of the Story- it can take time to go paperless- but make it a focus, a Green Year’s Resolution, and once you get used to it- you will find your life a lot easier and stress free- and as Nike says- Just Do It!