Thanks for coming back, I’m excited to show you how to move your paperwork from broad categories (see posts 1 – 6) into the next level of organization without having you break out into a sweat! To review, you’ve taken the piles of paper and sorted them into very broad categories like medical or house or financial. As new papers continue to arrive, you can keep adding them to the relevant box to stop those piles growing again. Now, let’s dive deeper and pick a category to work with. Your choice – what’ll it be?
Financial? Great, let’s take the financial box (or boxes, depending on how much you found) and see what’s in there. We’re trying to make smaller categories, so look for common threads. You might have some bank statements, some credit card statements, some credit card offers, some old checks, some investment records, some tax papers. Those are the usual suspects but you’ll probably have a few extra categories of your own too.
Take the papers out of the money box and sort into those categories – put all the bank statements together, all the receipts together, all the prospectuses together. If money was the broad category, what’s the next level in?
Again, don’t get stuck in the weeds trying to separate out every thing by individual category. if you have a bunch of paid bills, that’s one category – if you separate it out by service, you’ve suddenly got at least five and they’re all basically the same thing. We can sort further later, but to avoid overwhelm – always the goal – keep those categories fairly inclusive.
Put these smaller categories into the file folders you got yesterday. Label the tab with that fine-line marker pen so it’s easy to see at a glance what in there.
Don’t forget to use your timer and work in twenty minute increments. Take as long as you need to sort your big box broad categories into more specific – but not ultra specific – categories and then come back for the next step tomorrow. You’re doing great!