My quest for the perfect planner and system for paperworkOctober 3, 2017
I am a fluid woman; free flowing. I am a persistent woman, I carry on. However, there is a third quality I believe a woman needs in her arsenal, consistency. I think she should use this quality to a lesser degree because consistency can lead to frustration because there is no perfection. On the other hand, I have determined, I must become more consistent in two areas that fall under the large banner: ORGANIZATION.
I am upset, frustrated and overly annoyed with myself because I lack an organized system both for my 1 million papers and a daily calendar to keep me on track to avoid time management problems. I am exhausted from dashing out the door seven minutes late before I even arrive at my destination. But like everything else, thank God, this lack of organization did not enter into all the nooks and crannies of my lifestyle over 50 just my calendar and my paperwork.
So for today, darlings, let’s talk about a system for our 1 million papers so we no longer feel crazed and a calendar that affords us the ability to manage our time.
“The hardest part is making the decision to conquer the unavoidable. The easiest part is the tenacity to carry on and the ability to flow freely through the process.” –Honey Good
We have all heard the saying, “keep it simple.” That is my goal because I know the more complicated system I establish the harder it will be for me to stay consistent. I know myself, darlings, and I am tuned into many of you.
Organizing my paperwork
As of now, I have file drawers filled with folders in alphabetical order that I rely on when in need. I have been home in Chicago, in my apartment in the sky, since May 5 and have never opened the drawers! Immediately that tells me file drawers are for longterm organization and I only file papers after I have organized them.
In the digital space, I have a Dropbox account where I store my passwords, my 1 million musings, my photos, the book I am writing, my contracts, etc. My drop box needs organizing. I have my google docs where I store many other folders. It is in disarray. My Google drive needs organizing. I have my desktop where I keep important folders. My desktop needs organizing. So, my darlings, you can see I am trying.
We will discuss my drop box, google docs and my desktop on Friday under the topic: Survive: Organizing an office on my computer and instead; hiring a sales manager.
How the paper chaos starts
I gather up all my papers in my arms and begin to put them in folders in my mind, sorting through them and lining them up in piles on my desk. I am so frustrated. At this time I have important printed business and social emails whose piles need piles, charity events that need checks and answering, notes of what I have to do and notes on who I have to call, a few magazine articles to read, bills to pay, checks that need envelopes and stamps and return address stick ’ems, social dates and all other appointments to put onto one of my two calendars. Before I can file them away or send them out I have to organize them. Leaving them on my desk in piles does not work for me.
My orgnization solution for paperwork
I went to a Container Store and bought three containers (handsome trays) because I read on a different organizing topic: we, darlings, only need three of anything (three white shirts, three pairs of black pants, etc.) because we wear 20% of what we own and leave 80% hanging!
- A “TO DO” tray
- A “TO READ” tray
- A “TO FILE” tray
Anything that did not go into one of these three trays went into my waste basket.
There is a site I like with organizing tools: See Jane Work.
Organizing my time: The perfect calendar
I use my calendar on my computer. I had been keeping it on “month at a glance” (I could not see all my dates) so yesterday my granddaughter, Skylar who is visiting with my daughter, Jenny, told me to use the “week at a glance.” Much better darlings. Every date is visible and color coded.
I tried two other methods of keeping my calendar. I used my computer for business and a hand -written calendar for social engagements. This did not work at all. Why? Because when I wanted to write down a social date I was sitting at my computer and when I wanted to write a business date I was not near my computer! I did not trust myself so I investigated. I read that one calendar is better than two.
I bought many calendars and journals this year for experimentation. I choose most of them because I loved their covers; the color or pattern. My favorite was Week at a Glance. The calendar was the least expensive. I purchased it at Home Depot. I did make a small error; the calendar is too large for my needs.
DARLINGS, I DECIDED THAT BEING TERRIBLE AT SOMETHING IS THE FIRST STEP TO BECOMING GOOD AT SOMETHING. I call that ‘walking on the sunny side of the street.’
How do you go about organizing your time and your paperwork, dear readers? Share your favorite ways to keep on track in the comments below or on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.