6 Ways to Go Paperless This Year

Paper creates clutter, and without well-planned organization, finding a specific item later is a daunting task. Thanks to technology, we are able to share information and perform daily tasks without the needless use of paper. This saves our oxygen-giving trees and saves the energy needed to create the wood pulp that becomes paper. It is also because of those who have reduced and recycled their paper consumption that there are 20 percent more trees in the world than there were when Earth Day started in 1970. For those of you who do not know how to go paperless, or those who are looking for other ways to reduce their paper consumption, here are six tips.

Reduce How Much You Print

If you need to print, adjust your font size and margins to accommodate more information onto the page. Print on both sides as well so you do not have to use extra sheets. You can also forego printing by using a phone or tablet to read and share information. Instead of printing out a recipe, you can use a phone or tablet propped in a safe place while you cook.  

Recycle Old Papers

Going through old papers is a long, tedious process, so do not expect to accomplish this task in a day. Figure out what papers you need to keep (statements, tax records, investment-related papers, and ones with sentimental value) and recycle the rest.

Save Documents Digitally

Once you have decided what documents need to be saved, you can also save them digitally. Some people still fear this because a paper is a physical, real copy, whereas digital is on a screen and can be easily deleted. When scanning documents for a digital copy, be sure to save them in several different places (your computer, an external hard drive, a friend’s computer, etc.) so they will never be lost. Also be sure to create an organization system for the files so they are not hard to find.

Pay Bills Online

Many companies and services allow you to pay your bills online, whether that be for your phone, internet/cable, insurance, or utilities. No paper is needed for this and you do not have to go to the bank and run around town to pay everything.

Receive Paperless Statements

Along the same vein as paying bills online, you can receive paperless statements online. This way, you do not have a bill coming in the mail, but to your email. Many people receive notifications on their devices for emails and can see the statement as soon as it comes in.

Take Electronic Notes

Electronic devices come with apps for calendars and note-taking, so you do not need paper to keep track of everything. These devices can even remind you of calendar events so you never forget, and you can set reminders for other menial tasks. You can save your grocery list to your phone now, instead of writing it on a piece of paper.

Benefits of Going Paperless

Not only is going paperless relatively easy, but it also saves everyone money in the long run. Companies do not have to pay for the printing of everyone’s bills, and you do not have to pay for paper and ink for your printer. Going paperless does take time, but it does so much good.

Image Source: Pixabay

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Lacey Jolley
 

I love exploring, experiencing new places, and eating good food! I'm amazed every day at how well the Earth provides for us, and I want to return the favor. I hope to help others learn how we can make our world a better, cleaner place.

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