My office declared Aug. 4 to be “Clean-Up Day.” I spent most of the day cleaning out my working file folders. These are intended to hold just current projects, but they were overflowing with old information and completed projects. It’s difficult to set aside a whole day for weeding files, but so energizing that it’s worth it to make the time. I already feel that I have a better handle on my current projects.
Have you tried working file folders? It’s a flexible method that minimizes relabeling as your projects change.
Just label some folders in sequence, using numbers, letters, or a combination. I use F101, F102, etc., where F stands for folder. Then jot down the folder numbers and what each contains. This is your index. I created a paper form for my planner and list the contents in pencil, but you could also use a spreadsheet or a table in a word processing document. At first, you’ll need to refer to the index frequently, but soon you won’t need it for the files you reach for the most.
When you’re finished with the information in the folder, either toss the papers or file them in a permanent file. Erase your index entry too. Then reuse the working folder for another project.