When summer comes and the weather gets warm, we all know what to do – put the long pants and heavy coats in storage, and bring out the shorts and t-shirts! Easy enough, right? But what about the things that are not quite so obvious – your information and your paper? These things have transitional states of their own, and by managing them you can make your life a lot easier. Here are a few ideas:
Toss and delete. Open your file drawer. Are there outdated insurance policies, unwanted or unneeded statements or bills, or a folder overflowing with grocery receipts? Take this opportunity to get rid of all that stuff that is outdated or that you just don’t need. The same is true in your folders on your computer. While it’s not as easy to see clutter there, keeping unwanted or unneeded files on your computer takes up space and more importantly, makes it harder to find the documents you actually DO want.
Archive. Once tax season is over, free up space in your home office by sealing up your completed tax return and supporting documents and putting them into storage. Chances are that you won’t be accessing them very often, so moving them out of your prime work area will free up space for other things you need more often. Build a habit of moving this stuff out of your main area once a year when it’s completed. Just make sure to label it clearly so you can find it easily later!
Update or create. You’re keeping those all your emergency documents together in one safe spot, right? Oh, you’re not? This is a good time to gather all your key documents together and organize them into a binder that you can grab in the event of an emergency. If you already have an emergency binder, use this time to update it with any new or changed information.
What do you do when the seasons change to help keep your information and paper organized? Sound off in the comments.