I have become allergic to clutter. For instance, I hate mail. I loath it. Every night Keith brings in a pile from the mailbox at the end of the drive. For a decade, I’ve had a filing system to handle the montly deluge. While I’ve always had plan to manage it, somehow the work of following through on that plan has fallen to the wayside. So, each night I sort the junk from the bills and the “I don’t know” envelopes and shove them in the cupboard where I once organized the bills. They stack up by the armfulls.
The other night, I pulled out a pile that was bigger than a breadbox, and took two hours to sort through the mess. I handle almost all of our bills through our bank’s website and I track them on a colorful excel spreadsheet. The months worth of envelopes taking up space in the cupboard aren’t really necessary anymore. And yet they still pile up.
There are several problems with this plan. I don’t actually look at the bills as they come in, so I simply pay what I did last month… I may not ever need to pay Verizon again. A couple years ago, when we moved into our new house, I paid the electric bill the same amount for 6 months and overpaid them by a huge amount. On the flip side, if a payment goes up for some reason, my system doesn’t let me know until I get a late notice.
So, I’m coming up with a simpler plan. I spent an entire morning setting up electronic payments and noting down passwords, I cleared out my filing system and came up with three simple catagories. I’m going to be ruthless with this new plan. Fewer envelopes, earlier sorting, and a commitment to making it work.
As I have been searching Pinterest for ideas about how to handle the clutter, I came across this website I have really found intersting. I do not consider myself a minimalist, nor do I aspire to be, but I do like the practical steps and the mindset behind being very thoughtful about the the things in my life.