You’ve resolved to pare down. How do you now decide what to keep? Choose the question that speaks to YOU and ask it of every item:
- Does this serve me in my life today?
- If I were shopping right now, would I pay full price for this?
- Would this be worth packing up if I were to move?
- Does it lift me up or drag me down?
- Am I keeping this out of obligation?
- Would someone else enjoy this more than I do?
TIP: Listen to your gut. It always answers you immediately.
Low-maintenance, self-purging filing?
It’s possible with FreedomFiler’s color-coded system, which dictates how long files are kept: RED = permanent, ORANGE = remove/replace, BLUE = current tax documents, GRAY = active files, INDIGO = 10 years’ tax archives.
TIP: Use GREEN monthly folders = 12 for ODD year and 12 for EVEN year which hold receipts, paid bills, etc. When each new year begins, as you file new papers in folders, skim those inside (that are 2 years old now) to confirm their shred-worthiness.
FreedomFiler triggers you to purge your files so you never need a file clean-out day.
Visit My Resource Page to watch a 3-minute FreedomFiler video or to watch my KUTV organizing segments.
If you want accountability to accomplish tasks, yet hate dictating every moment of your day into calendar time slots, consider an option author Julie Morgenstern recommends:
TIP: Write down areas of your life in which you want to spend a certain amount of time on within a week (exercise, learning a new skill, practicing an instrument) and draw boxes, each signifying e.g. 15 minutes or 1 hour. As you devote that chunk of time, check off the boxes to easily reach your goal.
Here is mine that I use to keep me on track with practicing piano:
Visit My Resources Page to watch my 3-4 minute KUTV organizing segments.
If you look at an unread stack of books that you intended to read long ago, and feel “bad”, pass the pile along. If you are “happy” at the prospect of reading them, keep the books.
Our belongings elicit emotions. Our emotions dictate how we feel about ourselves, how we treat others and how effective we are.
TIP: If you say “I should keep this”, it may signify you do not really want to save it.
- For items you “can’t” get rid of yet, box them up with a post-it reminding you to open the box 1 year from today.
Does this sound familiar – you need to keep an email for a while yet not forever so it sits in your inbox and you constantly scroll through your emails asking “Can I delete this yet?”
Instead, after responding to an email, drag it into a folder titled the current year “2016”. Don’t waste time agonizing over whether to save or delete. Your computer’s search function can find it anytime needed.
- What remains in your inbox are emails needing response.
TIP: Treat the folders like tax archives – as the newest folder is created each January, delete the oldest.