We're here, the last Teach Tuesday in the series How to Never Miss an Important Date! I created this blog series to explain the steps and tools I use to mail out all my greeting cards on time all year long. I wanted to share my experience because the number one thing I heard when I opened Cafe Notes + Company was: "I love cards, but I always forget or run out of time to mail them."
Now that we're at the end, I hope that you took away a few tips (if not adopted the entire method I use) to avoid that feeling of it's too late to send a card, or whoops, I missed it entirely. In the process of creating this series, I realized that it all boils down to setting yourself up for success. As with many things in life the more work you do upfront, the easier it is for you later.
Here are the things we talked about that are necessary to set up once at the beginning of the year:
Important dates | In the fourth week of the series, I walked you through the best way to get all your dates organized in one space. By having all the occasions at hand it makes it easier for you to get them in your planner and on your calendars.
Addresses | Just like organizing all your events, we also went over the importance of having two current address lists. Making sure this is ready to go once a year makes the snail mail fly out of your house.
Filling out your calendars | Halfway through the series I gave you one of biggest tips for getting your cards out on time: getting all those occasions in your planner, phone, calendar, or whatever tool you decided to use. By having the celebrations that you want to mail out a card for written down - hopefully in two places - you set yourself up to be reminded rather than surprised when birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, etc. happen.
Setting up reminders | In the post How to Never Miss an Important Date: Getting Ahead I discussed two options for making sure you were reminded of upcoming events with plenty of time to mail a card. The annual method meant you filled out every month at once, seriously cutting back the time you have to spend on organizing your mail for the rest of the year.
Not too bad right? A couple of hours of work once a year and you come away with current addresses, filled out calendars, and reminders to yourself to mail out a card for all the planned occasions in your life. Adding to that, I went over a couple of things you can do each month to stay on top of your snail mail:
Setting up reminders | Yup, there were two ways to do this! One was annually, while the other method means you take 2 minutes at the end of each month to check the following month for anything you want to mail a card for. If there is an event, you write a reminder for yourself about a week before and your next 4 weeks are taken care of. My newsletter is all the reminder you need and it requires no effort on your part!
Keeping an inventory | Just last week I covered why you should have an inventory and how to maintain it throughout the year in just a few short minutes.
In addition to these posts on the method and steps to getting your snail mail game on point, I also gave you a ton of tips, tricks, and ideas for meeting all your snail mail goals.
Stamps | I went down the rabbit hole of stamp information online and came out with a post covering how to use each stamp and what stamps you should keep on hand.
Greeting card back stock | In the post How to Never Miss an Important Date: Building an Inventory I gave you the run down on the importance of having a variety of cards on hand. I also gave you some suggestions on what to keep in your back stock.
Command Center | A huge help in getting your mail in the mailbox on time is keeping everything organized and in one place. I gave you my ideas on where to keep your snail mail goodies, as well as some suggestions of what to stock in your mail command center.
And last, but not least, we talked about ways to get the people you live with involved in your snail mailing without making you late!
I created several tools along the way to help simplify the process and keep you on track for organizing your mail once and for all. You can download all of them right here! Say what? Yup, all of the free spreadsheets, checklists, and guides can be downloaded at once!
It has been a blast going through this process with you and I would love to hear if it is working out. Leave me a comment below with any questions or tips of your own! The number one thing to do is to find a system that works for you and stick to it the entire year. Think of all that happy mail going out, changing people's lives and brightening their days!