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Using Technology to Organize Your Life Without Paper

Paper is everywhere in your life: in your car, in your mailbox, in your bookshelves, and even stuck all over your monitor. You may not know it, but reducing your paper use by becoming more comfortable with current technology can lead to a more organized way of life. The majority of successful people in this world live uncluttered, organized lives.

Wouldn’t it be great to have everything you need electronically so it’s easy to find? No more tearing the house apart or digging through the garbage to find a piece of paper that may or may not have been thrown out. No more relying on paper that can’t be replaced if lost.

An e-Reader is a small handheld device that allows you to download and view millions of different books. The current average e-reader is about the size of a standard hard cover novel and holds up to 1,500 e-books. If you are used to owning and storing a huge collection of books, then being able to pack them all into one e-reader will save you a heck of a lot of space in your house.

Let’s say you go to a bookstore and the book you are looking for is out of stock. You’ve wasted your time and gas for nothing. What if you’re sitting in an airport and your flight is delayed. You just finished your book, and are left with nothing to read. In both situations all you would have to do is download the book onto your e-reader wherever you have a wireless connection.



If you must read them, most popular magazines have electronic versions available on their website for a nominal amount of money.





Smart phones are pretty much the standard when buying a new cell phone. Many times people don’t think they need a smart phone because they aren’t aware how its features can simplify their lives. With a full keyboard, you can easily take notes and type in someone’s contact info. If you use Outlook or Entourage, you can sync (have current information in two places) your notes and contacts so they are available on your computer as well. Remember, even the most basic cell phones have a note taking feature on them. So instead of writing notes on paper, type them into your phone. Your phone is one of those things you won’t accidentally throw away.



    1. For those of you in class, bring your laptop and take notes. There were a few times in college where I wrote notes and couldn’t understand what I wrote. With typing, you avoid this issue.





If it is available to you, you also have an option of using Microsoft OneNote 2007. You can create a new notebook, and add pages for each day.

After the college years comes the real world of work. Depending on your business, it may or may not be the best practice to bring a laptop into every meeting. If you can bring your computer into the meeting, by all means do so and take notes. However if you cannot bring your computer into a meeting, transfer those notes to your computer as soon as possible.

Time is usually something you don’t have a lot of in the business world, so don’t bother typing. Use a scanner to scan notes, and then use your organizational skills to appropriately file them in your computer for easy access.





Getting comfortable with current technology is the key to reducing your paper use. Practice using one tip weekly to get accustomed to doing things differently and more efficiently. Added bonus: Not having to take the garbage out as often. That’s something we can all benefit from.

Written on 11/24/2009 by Jay Scarrozzo. Jay is the author of Go Ask J and owns his own computer service company. He has a BS in Computer Information Systems and believes that new technology can be used by all if taught correctly. His blog focuses on providing new technology news that everyone can understand and appreciate. Photo Credit: burgermac
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