Going Paperless

August 12, 2010 | 331 Comments

Like it or not, we are a society of technology. 20 years ago, it was predicted that by the turn of the century, we’d have become a paper-free world. Well, not only has that failed to take place, it seems as if we have to deal with more paper on a daily and ongoing basis than ever before.

Even though society as a whole has not taken the paperless route–YOU CAN! By following a few basic steps, we can begin to free ourselves from the great paper tiger and save a forest as well. The average person in the US uses 750 pounds of paper per year. Way too much! A major advantage to going paperless, is that you’ll have fewer papers to tame.

What can you do to go ‘paperless?’

1) Don’t print your email. If you need to keep something, save it electronically. Set up an easily workable system of computer files so that you can find what you store.

2) If you receive catalogs in the mail, email the company and request that they remove you from their mailing list. Be sure to include your name and address as it’s printed on the catalog mailing label. If you decide to order from the company at a future date, you can simply look online for ordering information.

3) If you receive annual reports from investments, visit the company website to either discontinue them or change to email delivery. All of the information contained in the annual reports is easily accessible online. No need to clutter up your office with something you will never read. Seriously, have you ever read them?

4) Owner’s Manuals — once you unpack your item and determine that all is well, visit the manufacturer’s website. There you may be able to download the manual. Create a folder on your computer named OWNER’S MANUALS. Don’t just save the link to the site because as models change, companies tend to remove the manuals from the sites.

5) Rather than cut multitudes of recipes out of magazines, go to the magazine’s website and download the recipe to your computer. I’d venture a guess that 99% of clipped recipes are never made. In the unlikely event that you decide to make the recipe, you can then print it out. In the meantime, you’ve saved yourself having to find a place for all of those clipped pages.

6) Keep your computer files organized. If your files are organized, you will be able to find what you’re looking for and won’t feel the need to keep a paper copy at hand for easier access. Label all of your computer files clearly, not just with a date but with a description also so that you will know what is inside.

One very important thing to discard when going paperless is your fear. Ask yourself, ‘What’s the worst thing that would happen if I no longer had this piece of paper?’ What steps would I need to take if I needed the information? Chances are much better than not that you will never have to refer to it again. For anything. Ever.

If the need did arise where you had to access the information, it’s most likely that it could easily be found somewhere on the Internet. This is true for everything from bank statements, medical or other billings, product information and more.

One thing often heard from people, ‘What will happen if my computer crashes?’ As you just heard, probably nothing will happen because the vast majority of what we save never gets looked again. And besides, you back up your computer on a regular basis, don’t you?

Source: www.GetOrganizedNow.com


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