Is there paper clutter in your office? Here are some tips and ways to develop a paper filing system.
A desk cluttered with mounds of paper is enough to stress anybody out. Unfortunately, if there's an office paper shredder big and powerful enough to shred your entire office, we don't know about it yet.
So before you resort to shoveling armfuls of papers you actually need into the shredder, you should consider setting up a paper filing system to help you recenter and get a grip on office clutter. (Putting your paper messes in one big pile out of sight doesn't count as a filing system. Sorry.)
Read on for 3 of our most effective paper filing tips!
1. Find A New Home
For your papers, that is!
Chances are, you have a filing cabinet or rack of some sort already--but if your whole office is a mess of paper, it's probably not the filing device you need.
Some people work well with an accordion-style folder, while others might find they need an entire filing cabinet. Some can settle for a set of filing racks or wall holders. Depending on the sheer quantity of paper you're working with, your needs will probably vary.
The fact of the matter is, the system you're using now just isn't working. The financial investment and the excitement of getting a new filing device might be just the thing you need to get started on your new, super-organized paper filing system!
2. Make a System
So. About that system. You can only survive whole "new documents on the right side of the desk, old ones on the left" thing for so long.
A thorough, specific, but simple paper filing system is absolutely necessary if you're hoping to get organized once-and-for-all.
Don't be afraid to color-code different subjects with tabs or folders. You'll probably need to invest in separate filing racks or cabinets to serve your different business needs and keep all your documents where they need to be.
While you're working to establish a filing system, however, beware of filing categories that are hyper-specific. Will you really have enough documents to fill a folder on "Gum Ball Flavors"?
Stick to major, necessary categories.
3. Shred the Rest
If you've invested in a new home for your files, established a thorough paper filing system that addresses all your major needs, and still have files leftover, it's time to think about shredding.
It's fine to maintain a "miscellaneous" section in your filing system for that stray gum ball flavors article, but if you find yourself holding onto a significant amount of totally irrelevant papers, it might be time to reevaluate your reasons for holding onto it at all.
Keeping random files and clutter around your space is a surefire way to wind right back up where you began--in that office space you wish you could shred altogether.
If you don't need it, shred it. If you can manage to keep up on disposing of unnecessary files, your space will stay organized. Finally.
Ready for Your New Paper Filing System?
We thought so.
It's time to put your foot down and do away with all that anxiety-inducing paper clutter.
Remember, the best way to ensure your paper filing system works is to stick to it! Making a habit of filing things away as you get them.
Once you've organized your space, head on over to treat yourself to a brand-new shredder to help you stay on top of that organization!