Organizing a Home Office: To Shred or Not To Shred

filing

To Shred or Not To Shred

I’m just tickled with my new filing system.  As I began this project, I was determined to make things involving paper a little more pretty and a lot more organized. How many times in a week do I pick up something and think, “What do I do with this?  Do I keep it or trash it?  If I keep it, where do I put it so I’ll remember where it is?  It’s enough to make me want to hole-punch someone!

filing

Years ago, once we decided to trash something, you just wadded it up and tossed it in file thirteen. Now we have paper pilferers and electronic embezzlers whose goal is to heist your life.

Our paper shredder.
Our paper shredder.

I couldn’t resist.

Fight Identity Theft

So every piece of paper I touched that was to be trashed, now had a third action to consider. To shred or not to shred?  According to “Fight Identity Theft” , there is a list of precautions to take to prevent life-heisting. Things I didn’t think of that are on that list are:

  • Address labels from junk mail and magazines
  • Documents containing maiden name (used by credit card companies for security reasons)
  • Documents containing names, addresses, phone numbers or e-mail addresses
  • Un-laminated identification cards (college IDs, state IDs, employee ID badges, military IDs
  • Items with a signature (leases, contracts, letters)
  • Luggage tags
  • Medical and dental records
  • Pre-approved credit card applications
  • Report cards
  • Resumés or curriculum vitae
  • Transcripts
  • Travel itineraries
  • Used airline tickets
  • Utility bills (telephone, gas, electric, water, cable TV, Internet)

Shredding my John Hancock

While I may be tickled about my new filing system, I am NOT delighted at the new task of making sure my “paper-life” has been cut to ribbons.  Who would have thought that we now have to protect our signatures from a “John Hancock” crook?!  The picture in my mind now is of the “hamburgler” tip-toeing through a landfill with his magnifying glass looking for my name scribbled across some random scrap of paper.

Photo Credit: Amy Burdette
Photo Credit: Amy Burdette

 

Shreds of our life. Photo Credit: Amy Burdette
Shreds of our life. Photo Credit: Amy Burdette

I can remember thinking sometime in my childhood how cool it would be to know that someone else would want to be me.  Well, now I am trying to protect myself and my family from that very thing.  I am me and there can be NO duplicates.

 

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