Do you ever become overwhelmed by the constant emails, junk mail, and shopping catalogs that flood your inbox and mailbox? I for one do. I’ve recently made it a habit to separate my email accounts into two different ones. I have one that is for personal correspondence and one that I use when I purchase things online or if I choose to subscribe to a newsletter or blog. It makes it easier to separate what’s important and therefore I can prioritize which emails I want to read and respond to. Recently I’ve gotten into the habit of unsubscribing from a lot of emails I get from companies or brands that I’ve shopped with it the past. It helps to simplify my inbox. Similarly when I receive junk mail or catalogs I make it a point to call the phone numbers on the back of the catalog and ask to remove me from future mailing lists.
When I moved into my new condo I welcomed furniture and design catalogs, however I’ve been living at my condo for 3 years and I’m no longer in the market for new furniture. No thank you Crate and Barrel, CB2, West Elm, Pottery Barn, etc. etc.. Even when I get home late from work the first thing I do after checking my mail is to call and ask to be removed from these catalogs. Typically these catalogs have 800 numbers and customer support that will take your call outside normal business hours. If they do not answer the phone, then I’ll go online to the customer service link and email them to request to be removed. I recently received a catalog from a Chicago art institute and a children’s clothing catalog from J.Crew. I’m not sure exactly how I was added to these catalogs since I’ve never shopped at any of these places and I don’t have children. However often times companies will either sell your information to affiliates or sister companies and that is how we end up on these lists. I find that spending just 5 minutes to ask to be removed from catalogs you don’t want really helps to simplify the mail that is coming through and it also helps companies to reduce waste and save some paper/resources.
For those pesky credit card offers that appear in your mailbox so reliably, I find that if I write “return to sender, recipient has moved,” they stop sending them to you.
Here are some additional resources for getting your name off direct mail lists