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It would be great if I had the discipline to scan paperwork as it comes in, but I don't. I also don't have time to open the scanner up and digitally file things away one by one. So I've created a place for "active files" to corral my paperwork before the lot gets scanned and digitally filed.
And while you might be organized to a T (and thus inclined to skip this step), I think it's important for one reason: Taking a moment for your active filing will help clue you in as to what needs to be scanned and what can be recycled, avoiding the habit of trying to scan every document that comes in.
For instance, after a week or two, I know I'm not going to return my Banana Republic shirt, and I can now recycle the receipt. Or maybe I've decided that I don't really need the pamphlet to my latest organizing conference. You get the picture.
If you don't trust your backup system, you're bound to keep the paper copy as a reinforcement, which negates the purpose of scanning everything in the first place.
Disposing of your sensitive documents is key to finishing up the paperless process. If you don't want to invest in a shredder (or refuse to find a spot to hide this eyesore) there are plenty of shredding resources out there.
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