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My Own Organization Tip & Techniques

Posted by on Jan 10, 2013

I ended up barely spending anytime at home yesterday, between doctors appointments and prescription pickups and just lots of errands in general.  So I didn’t make too much progress with the letters and storage bin, as I have only been working on that in the house.  But I did take my computer with me and was able to start on some organizing within the computer, and I’m pretty happy with what turned out.  Below are some of my favorite organizational (semi-digital) projects that I have been working on and wanted to share with you.

My 2013 Budget Sheet

My 2013 Budget Sheet

Jeremy’s mom send us a copy of her own budget sheet at the end of last year, and one of my goals was to actually use it daily and record every transaction.  So I started using this simple Excel sheet, and just fell in love.  I make sure to record in detail every transaction; and with the set up of the sheet, once I insert a number into the withdraw or deposit columns, it automatically adds up the total in the balance column.  So easy to use and fun to use, and it has really helped keep track of our finances.  (I have Jeremy write down all of his transactions in a mini notebook and at the end of the day we go through it as I enter the numbers into the spreadsheet.)  I love it so much, that I recently created two separate sheets (under one file, but two tabs): one for my debit card and the other for cash transactions, which has helped us organize our money even more.

A Pink Sunset worksheet

A Pink Sunset Worksheet

One of my main goals for the beginning of the new year is to organize and keep track of important information regarding A Pink Sunset.  I wasn’t sure the best way to keep track of the everything, as there was so much information that I wanted to record.  After some thought, and the success I found with using Excel to manage our finances, I decided to begin to record the information into a spreadsheet as well.  As you can see, today is the first day I am using this so it looks pretty blank (I just created it yesterday while driving around in the car), but I can already tell it is going to help me keep my goals and stay up to date with what needs to be done.  This sheet will help me keep track of important things, such as time spent on things such as website maintenance, writing posts, and advertising through other websites.  I have a few goals, such as Tweeting a certain amount of times per day, which is what the bird symbol represents (so far I have Tweeted once today, which is why there is one bird).  Any any large amount of information that is to be added to any of the boxes, can be added as a “note,” as seen above in black and white.  This is handy, useful, and I have some high hopes that this will improve my organization and tasks that need to be done.

 

Computer File Organization

Computer File Organization

One of the most useful things that I have been doing for quite awhile now is taking special consideration into labeling and profiling the files and folders that I have stored on my computer.  I do this for pretty much all of my folders, and most of my files.  It is a fast way to identify a specific folder and it gives hints if I am looking for something specific but can’t remember where it is (and it gets rid of those ugly blue default folders!).  I highly recommend this technique, and it is super easy to accomplish!  To change the icon of a specific folder or file, all you do is right click the file or folder and click “Get Info.”  Next, a small window will pop up with information about the file or folder, and in the left corner there will be a picture of the current icon (probably the blue folder or something representing the type of file it is).  What I do next is find an image that I want to represent the folder and I open it in either Preview or Photoshop.  I select an area of the image (I try to make it as square as possible), just copy the selection (no need to save the image) and return to the “Get Info” box.  Click on the current icon image (on the top left) and then paste your new image on top.  Then you should be good to go!

 

My New Favorite Task Manager - Workflowy

My New Favorite Task Manager
via WorkFlowy

Since starting my blog and trying to be more organized (and not forget!) things that need to be done, I have been trying out sooo many different task manager & to-do apps that I can’t even begin to tell you how many.  For awhile I was decently happy with EverNote, which a friend totally loves and recommended it to me, but I after awhile I realized it wasn’t for me.  Maybe it was not quite as simple as I wanted (since I like to write a to-do item down as soon as I think of it and not have to click through a bunch of folders to get there) or maybe it just had too many features that I just didn’t need.  (Too many features?  Is there such a thing?  I’m kinda thinking so…)  Anyways, I was recently doing some research and found a program called WorkFlowy.  At first I was pretty hesitant: it had a weird name, the set up seemed weird and a little hard to understand, and unfortunately it doesn’t come as an actual app for your computer.  But I watched the introductory video on the main page and decided to give it a shot and I love it!  It has really allowed me to make goals and actually accomplish them.  I’m not going to go into too much detail on how it works, as you can learn that from the website if you are interested, but I will tell you some of the fun aspects of the program.  As seen on the far right of the photo above, I have several Categories, and under those are the bulleted things I need to do.  All categories can be minimized, so there is less clutter on your homepage, or you can click and be directed to a single category page.  What’s really cool is that your to-do items, can have to-do items attached to them as well.  For example, on the far left of the image above you can see the gray circle surrounding the bullet point next to “create MAIN category pages.”  If I click that (or extend it on the main page) I get the list of main pages that are on my to-do list (the top center in the photo above).  And what’s really fun, is that when you complete a task you can select “Complete” and it puts a line through the task, and it really makes me feel accomplished!  And, shhhh, but I actually even move my completed items from it’s original category into my category titled Past Accomplishments so I can see how much I have gotten done!  All in all I definitely recommend you give it a try!  It’s free, and although you can only access it through the internet on your computer, it does have apps for several phone types that instantly sync with your computer!

Also if you would like any of my spreadsheets to download for yourself, just send me an email or comment below and I’d love to share with you! :)

 

I also want to ask for your thoughts and prayers, especially for my grandmother.  Today would have been my grandpa’s birthday.  Three years ago my mom held a big family party for him because he was finally feeling better from previous health complications.  That following Wednesday he suddenly passed away, and a week after celebrating his birthday we were at his wake.  We all miss him tremendously, and I ask that you say a special thought for my grandmother, as her life has changed so drastically since she lost the love of her life.  Rest In Peace Grandpa B.
We miss you Grandpa!
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