Repeat, Repeat, Repeat
Consistency is a crucial element of becoming and staying organized. Using the same categories and terms across the different aspects of life that require managing makes it easier to quickly decide where something belongs. For example, I keep the hard copy of my vehicle title in a binder labeled AUTO, a scanned image of the title backed up digitally in a folder named AUTO, and email confirmations from paying for tab renewals in a category called AUTO in my personal email account. Even creating a standard for how you use capital letters can help you quickly see what level of data you are looking at when navigating your records. It seems simple - and it really is - but takes a bit of planning.
Starting with a name for each major area means you can then subdivide further into logical levels of detail. For a category like HOME, which may have a number of collections of information within it, that may look something like the image at right.
The key is deciding what labels or tags make sense to you and then repeating them consistently everywhere you store information.
We can naturally break these down further, if desired, as shown below. After the structure is created, filtering individual files into the proper folders is easy!
For more information about tools that professional organizers love, another perspective on managing your work inbox, or just a funny video, check out the links below. Happy organizing!
We Love Messes - best filing products
Lifehacker - five folder system