It's Organize Your Files Week! Are your filing cabinets busting at the seams? How long does it take you to find a file? Do you have duplicate files stored all over your office? When was the last time you purged your files? How is your system working for you? Do you even have a system?
This week, make a plan to go through your files. I'm not saying to re-organize your entire office. I just want you to tackle your files.
Here are 10 quick tips on how to get started:
1. Grab all the files you have. Grab EVERYTHING!
2. Start going through each file to see if you really need everything in the folder.
3. Make a shred pile, a toss pile, and a keep pile.
4. As you are going through the files, place the ones you are keeping in categories.
5. Don't think about designing your system. Just place in categorized piles at this time.
6. Once you have your categories, decide if you want to color code. Do what works for you.
7. Once you are left with the files you are keeping, think about how you reach for these files.
8. Keep the ones you reach on a daily basis closest to you. Keep the ones you don't use as much further away from you.
9. Be sure the system you are re-designing works for you and you will be able to follow it and maintain it. That is the key, maintaining your organization and becoming more efficient and productive.
10. Make a plan now for next year. Mark it on your calendar to re-visit your filing system next year. Purge again and re-organize if you must.
What do you do with your clothes once you get them home from the dry cleaners? Do you take them out of the plastic bags and hang them on your hangers in the closet? Do you transfer them to cotton garment bags? Do you keep them hanging on the wire hangers in the plastic until the next time you have to wear them?
I've been in many closets recently where the dry cleaning is still in the plastic bags hanging on the wire hangers. Some of these outfits have been in the bags for months, even years! Most are special occasion outfits that are only worn once in a great while.
Here are 7 reasons you should never store your clothes in the plastic dry cleaning bags:
1. The plastic bags cause oxidation which leads to discoloration of the clothes.
2. The plastics bags will cause stains and odors.
3. The damp environment in the bag will be a breeding ground for moths, which will eat through your clothes.
4. The bags cause yellowing and weakening of the fibers of the clothes.
5. Wire hangers will rust and ruin your clothes.
6. Wire hangers will also ruin the shape of your clothing.
7. Clothes need to breathe and they cannot breathe in a plastic bag.
If you need to store clothing in a garment bag, you can purchase cotton garment bags. Cotton garment bags are sold at the Container Store, Bed Bath and Beyond, Target, etc. Check online to see the best deals and the ones that suit your needs.
At least once a week, I hear somebody tell me that they want to hire a professional organizer but are embarrassed by what their home or office looks like. They really want help, but can't make that leap.
They often say they don't know where to start or they start a project and get overwhelmed and distracted, walk in circles and just can't seem to finish. They feel consumed by their disorganization and clutter.
You may have too many items in your home, and there is disorganization and clutter, that is a fact, but no judgement is made. The goal is to help you become more efficient, productive, and to help you develop working organized systems that you will be able to maintain.
If you are embarrassed for a professional organizer to come visit, especially if it is your office, how do you feel when clients, co-workers, or managers arrive at your office?
Are you the type that when you are having guests over, you throw everything into a closet, making more work for yourself when they leave?
How does your space in your home or office make you feel?
Not able to think clearly
Not able to be creative
Think about the above and walk through each room in your home or office and write down how you feel when you walk into each room. Stop feeling embarrassed and do something about it. How long do you want to go on feeling this way?
Does all of the above sound familiar? It's Spring, a time for new beginnings. Tackle it once and for all, start fresh, get over your embarrassment and get organized. You are holding yourself back from experiencing less stress, more free time, having more money in your pocket, and more energy. Reap these benefits and just make that leap. Once you tackle a small project, you will be
motivated and energized to move onto other projects!