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Whew! When I opened my mailbox Tuesday after the holiday, I was literally stunned by the amount of crap in there and the fact that there were zero bills. Why? Because most of my bills are sent electronically to me. There are two that I do receive hard copies of and those are the local electric and property tax bills. The rest I receive through my online bill pay with my checking account. BUT it did give me the push I needed to minimize my mailbox. After this, I’ll be working on minimizing my email with Daily Inbox Zero: 9 Proven Steps to Eliminate Email Overload (Productive Habits Book 5).
So why the sudden increase of crap in my mailbox? It’s the time of the year when everyone and every company starts sending out catalogs. And right now I have two mailboxes so that means double the crap. Why do I have two mailboxes? One is business and the other is at my home because I have to have a “physical” address. I think it’s a conspiracy for MORE CRAP to hit my mailboxes! Just kidding.
By the way I have been working very hard to get my name off these catalog mailing lists. What seems to happen though is I’m successful at one or two removals but two or three different catalogs show up in their place. Many times I have never even heard of these catalogs so why am I on their mailing list? The truth may never be known but you have to give it to the marketers because they are very good at getting their stuff in your hands – or at least in your mailbox.
So what is a minimalist to do? Well I do two things. First we accumulate the catalogs in a box and when we’re ready to burn branches, leaves, etc. we toss the box of unwanted catalogs in the fire. That works for us out in the country for the physical disposal. What about stopping the catalogs? I have removed my name from every list possible and the amount of catalogs have actually decreased over the years. Another thing that has helped is that my name has been dropped from many mailing lists because I no longer purchase from them. The time it has taken for these catalogs to stop being delivered to me can range anywhere from one year to several years. But some catalogs like Fingerhut which I have NEVER ordered from will send something every few years it seems.
Eventually my goal is to have only the PO Box and no longer have a mailbox in the front of my house. Will I ever be able to do that? I don’t know but I’m going to try. In the meantime, I’ll just keep contacting the companies to request they stop sending me catalogs. Maybe one day I will be catalog free. One can hope right?
Light & love,
For tips on how to begin your decluttering journey, you can Start Here, or snag a copy of the 30 Day Challenge (our Minimalism and Decluttering eBook).