Let's Talk About Mail
And how much I hate it! There's nothing sexy about mail, unless it's money or a sweet love letter. But for the most part it's envelopes, bills, advertisements, and pretty much an excess of paper ain't nobody got time for!
So how do we combat the mail?
Mail Combat 101
First things first. If it doesn't come in the first place, you won't have to deal with it.
Contact any advertising companies that have your address. If it shows up, find the company and contact them. Most often they're online and you can enter your address into their Do Not Send box.
Most companies now automate their billing. Take advantage of e-bills so you don't get the paper version. Plus, if it's a regular bill, it's easy to set up auto-pay to make it even more convenient for yourself.
Some things will keep coming, and maybe you want them to keep coming like credit card applications, bills, or health records. However, if there's no reason to save them once you've seen them, shred anything with highly sensitive information.
Set up a file box with the things you NEED to save. I emphasize need because most things we need these days can be found online, or even saved as a digital record online. But if you're going to save anything, give it a designated file in a file box.
When you receive something that matches what you've decided to save, you already know where it needs to go.
Put the new one in place of any previous month's copy. If you didn't read the previous month's, well... are you planning to? Like, really? Might want to consider stopping any magazine subscriptions unless you truly read them.
That goes for:
Lawyer-ly statements, like those booklets with tiny print that come with new credit cards
Discard all these things immediately. Like, as soon as you come in the door. It reduces the amount of bulk you have to deal with right away. It also forces you to deal with the mail right away rather than letting it sit in a pile for weeks gathering dust and, more likely, more mail.
You've opened the mail. Now what?
If you deal with things like bills or other things that need your attention, I recommend getting something that serves as your in box. This is where you put all the things you need to deal with.
If you want to get crazy, get some post-its or something else that you can write dates for when you need to send something out, and then sort them chronologically by what piece of mail you need to deal with first.
Then, if it will help, have an out-box where you put things that are ready to go to the post office or wherever once you've done what you need to do with them (signed checks, signed documents, etc).
What have you found helps you in dealing with the mountain of mail?