A Smart System To Process Your Paperwork

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As much as we want to have everything organized inside our computers, there is still a lot of real paperwork sent and given to us.
What are we going to do with it? I've been searching for the best way to organize my digital documents for a while now, tried different systems and found great new ways of doing so.
Very interesting indeed, but what if too much attention is going to organizing our virtual documents and while inventing and tinkering our best digital file system to date, the papers, letters, presentation or lesson handouts and other printed documents pile up around the computer cluttering our desk.
During a conversation I had with a colleague he described how he organizes his paperwork using a smart and simple system.
It goes like this: Two Drawers Take two empty drawers.
Collect all the documents and pile them up in the first drawer.
That's it for now.
For the coming six months, keep putting new articles in this drawer.
If you want to read something during that time, take it out of the drawer, read it and then archive it somewhere else, or throw it away if you don't think you'll need it again.
After half a year you take the documents that are left and put them in the second drawer.
During the next six months you can again just take any document you want, read it and archive it or throw it away.
New articles go in the first drawer just like before.
Be Ruthless Then, after a year, take all the documents from the second drawer and throw them away.
You gave yourself a year to read them and if you didn't, they are apparently not that interesting after all.
It's save now to say that you will not read them anymore.
Try not to look at each document, be ruthless and just get rid of the whole pile at once.
After that you take everything from the first drawer and put it in the second again.
What if there is something in the second drawer you really don't want to get rid of? It's questionable if you will ever read any of the files ending up in the second drawer in the first place, but if you discover something in there you really don't want to get rid of, you can put it in the first drawer again.
This is dangerous though.
Make sure you don't have a lot of those files circulating in your system and never do this for a second time.
Which Documents? This system works for the papers that you have to read.
It's not for invoices and things like that, but for those handouts you get, articles someone printed for you to read, interesting magazine articles, sheets of notes you took and want to review, all those documents you have lying around.
You want to read them but didn't take the time time for it yet.
After a good amount of time we will discover that a lot of the articles that seemed important aren't that interesting anymore.
But it's impossible to know this beforehand.
So before we throw everything away, this system gives us a buffer.
So when we want to review those sheets of paper with notes from an interesting conversation or inspiring brainstorm, they're there waiting for us in the drawer.
And it also prevents us from having an unnecessary amount of old paperwork lying around.
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