So, since all the papers (mail, school worksheets, newsletters and bulletins, fliers from our neighborhood, and things for Mom to deal with) were being piled on my desk, that became monster to attack this month. When I wanted to sit at my desk to do any work or writing or even just check my e-mail, I had to do it around the piles of papers or deal with them first. Yuck! My solution: an inbox. I bought an inexpensive tray and placed it at the corner of my desk. All things that Mom needs to see or do something with go there, then at the end of the day when I check my e-mail for the last time, I look at and deal with what is in my inbox.
Overall it has worked well. I think that I am the one that uses it the most. There are so many times during the day when I need to do something with but am not in a position to stop what I am doing to do it. In my inbox it goes, and I know that before the day ends I will take the opportunity to review the papers and then do what is needed: file, recycle, or place in my action files. (I am still working on how the action file idea will look and function for me.)
My goal going forward is that at the end of each day, I'll have an empty inbox to greet me the next morning when I sit down at my desk. I have yet to be consistent with that aspect of the habit, but just having it there is making a big difference in corralling the papers and keeping them from taking over my desk.