I need inspiration – to get rid of paperwork!

I have a lot of paperwork, and having a bit of hoarder and procrastination tendency at heart, it is not surprising that much of it is no longer relevant and stacking up and filling spaces that could be better used.

Don’t get me wrong, my house is nowhere near the state of things you see on the famous t.v. show Hoarders.  There are other people in my house who can probably take some of the credit for keeping me in check!

I did have an inspiration tonight that it is time to rid myself of paperwork from my previous job.  I switched companies about two years ago and have boxes of notes I had taken that I thought might come in handy.  I have referenced this material as I started my new job, and pulled some of the folders and notebooks out where the ideas and thoughts and doodles and mind-maps that I had created could help me kick-start an initiative with my new team.  After this amount of time though, I need to come to terms with the fact that the good stuff has been culled, and the rest is not needed.

These notes, my handwriting, the different slant of writing showing frustration vs. free thought vs. decisions made were important.  They had a place, they served me well, they did their job.  It’s time to honour the notebooks, the loose papers, the success they brought me, and the memories they conjure…and put them to rest.

There are some books that are a bit older – I mean really, a book on programming languages…having managed teams for about 15 years now, they would laugh if they heard me quoting how to program a computer I am sure – so they should be the easy ones to release.  I’m sure there are some books in every life that point to a piece of your identity that brought you to where you are today.  Seeing these and touching these stirs up memories that are soft and comforting and wistful.  I’ve decided I can take pictures of them and keep the memory without the physical book (that is actually out of date anyway for what is required today).

The freedom will allow me to make space – physical, emotional, and intellectual – for the new thoughts, the new teams, the new ideas, and the new successes.

Oh yeah, another bonus will be the cleaned up space in the home and the pleased, surprised look on my husband’s face.

I haven’t done it yet…I’ve set myself a target date…help me stick to it by encouraging me with your thoughts.


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13 Responses to I need inspiration – to get rid of paperwork!

  1. I know how you are feeling! I really keep too much teacher stuff here. I lugged a couple big Rubbermaid boxes out to the school, but it really doesn’t look like I made a dent. Baby steps..lol

    • Hi jumping…i’m heartened to hear others keep this kind of stuff too. Remember, enough baby steps and it will all be done. I am thinking of getting the first three boxes of stuff out tomorrow…but no commitment yet. I’ll let you know how it goes.

  2. TheIdiotSpeaketh says:

    You can do it Gord! Anything that might have any sentimental value related to the old job, stuff away somewhere….and everything else, just leave it for the kids or husband to take care of while you are gone one day. You will never know it is gone. So, glad to hear you are NOT a hoarder…..whew! 🙂

    • I think the stuffing away is what got me to this point. I started out with way more than I have now and tried to just keep the important stuff! I do like the thought of putting it to one side and telling the husband to chuck it for me…eases the pain for me and probably lots of fun for him.

  3. Zahara says:

    Parting with sentimental items is difficult. Turn it into a ritual, maybe have a bonfire, and when all that remains are embers, toast marshmallows. Could the books be donated? Out with the old, in with the new!

  4. I’m picturing your house as I read this. Yes, you can do it! Start with your ‘old room’…and just pick one thing – clothes, books, papers, pictures, something and tackle just that. Don’t even look at the rest. Or you can pick one small space in it of 3′ x 3’, tape it off, and just look at that space. You can do it…but don’t try it on your serene Sundays. 🙂

    I’ll let you know how my quest goes.

  5. yellowcat says:

    I’m not a hoarder, I’m just lazy. I live in a 3 bedroom house by myself and last winter I moved my bed out into my living room. My living space is sort of a studio setup with everything I need in the kitchen and living room.

    I cleaned out one bedroom and it just has my son’s left over furniture. I almost cleaned another room and I use it as a guest room and it’s where I keep my clothes. It also has boxes and boxes of stuff my daughter left behind…clothes, shoes, pictures and mountains of stuffed animals. My old bedroom is a fright. I made a small effort at cleaning it, but most days I’m scared to go in it.

    I’ll keep your cleaning goal in my thoughts if you’ll give me the courage to clean and organize my old room. Deal?

  6. OH TechMom, I think clearing space can be empowering not only healing. I feel like you need it right now! How are you feeling? Love your honesty and when I finish the Ornaments I will post the pic!


    • Hi CatMan…you are right, I need the clarity of free space right now. Seems to be a cycle for me every fall after ignoring the inside of the house most of the summer. Feeling much better and planning to tackle some chores in the week ahead! I look forward to the ornament pics. I used to do all homemade gifts every year, and have recently gotten away from it…maybe you will inspire me to get back to it.

  7. Though I just had a novel published last November, I still have a day job, which is technical writing. I accumulated so many samples of the manuals I wrote over the years, thinking they’d come in handy when I needed to find a new gig. But in the technology industry, this stuff gets old fast. I recently kissed their dusty covers and threw them in the trash. It felt good to have some empty space in the closet that I could grow into. Your line “The freedom will allow me to make space – physical, emotional, and intellectual – for the new thoughts, the new teams, the new ideas, and the new successes” is very true. Get to it! 🙂

    • Thanks Margaret. It’s good to hear from someone who has been through it instead of just the neat freaks who don’t know why I’d hold on to these things. I think getting rid of your manuals that are more professionally done than my notes would be more challenging. Your encouragement helps. Congrats on the published novel.

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