Day 22 of the 30 Day Minimalist Challenge
I cleaned out my desk. Or part of my desk anyway.
I shredded old files and made stacks of office supplies to give away. Here is a stack of some of the supplies I gave away: large clips, cd cases, adhesive dots for organizing, and more. These were in one of the many drawers I cleaned out.
Tackling a home office can be daunting. But take it one drawer at a time. And don’t get overwhelmed! Get organized.
I worked on organizing my filing cabinet.
Appliance warranties and manuals – I threw away manuals for appliances we no longer own. For new appliances, I tape the receipt to the inside cover of the manual. I make a new file for various categories: Kitchen Appliances, Office Equipment, Yard Equipment, etc. I file the manuals in the appropriate file as soon as I set up your new appliance/equipment.
Old bank statements and tax returns – I keep the ones for the last year until I complete you tax returns. Older statements can be shredded; they are available online if I need them in the future. Here is a great article on how long to keep bank and financial records.
Auto – We have one file for each car. The purchase documents and title are in this file. We put all repair and maintenance records in the file along with registration and insurance information. I go through these files every few years and throw away outdated registration and insurance records.
Personal – I have one file for each family member. Birth certificate, immunization records, school transcripts all are kept in these files.
Home purchases and sales – I have a file for each home we’ve lived in. Closing documents for the purchase and sale.
Medical Records – I have a 3-ring binder where I put all receipts for the current year. If I call on a bill I write the info either on the bill or a sticky note on the bill. I write when and how I paid each bill on the front of the bill. We’ve not had enough to itemize medical on our taxes so I shred these in February for the previous year.
Other files, mostly things that are only of importance to me, go in the drawers in my desk. Recipes, story ideas, misc articles, printouts, etc seem to pile up if I don’t stay on top of filing. I try to go through these files every couple of years. If I haven’t used it it read it in two years, out it goes!
If you office at home, you may want to keep your personal and family files in a separate drawer or even a separate cabinet from your work files.
Office supplies can add huge amounts of clutter to a home office. You may have a favorite type of pen and pencil. Get rid of all the rest! Especially those that don’t work! If a pen doesn’t work, don’t stick it back in the drawer; throw it away! If you have stacks of pads and other supplies you don’t use, get rid of them!
I discovered that many items I needed when homeschooling (stacks of notebook paper, spiral notebooks, and #2 pencils) are just cluttering my storage cabinet. I know other families who still have children at home can use these items so I gave the items to one of these families.
Cleaning out a home office can be daunting, but you can do it!