Consider this scenario: You need an important file from your table immediately. You know you have dumped it somewhere, but just when you need it most, you just cannot remember exactly where. Time is running out and you are shuffling through hundreds of folders with hundreds of files. Your table looks like an avalanche has swept over it, making the search more difficult. Can you relate to the frustration? How long exactly does it take you to sift through your files to retrieve an important document?
Review your home filing system. How do you go about filing your bills, mails, receipts, and other documents? Do you know what papers to shred and toss to the garbage bin and what to keep? A cluttered desk requires you to spend more time, effort and energy sifting through the clutter every time you look for something, but having a simple and organized home filing system can save you from all the trouble.
The best home filing system is a system that meets your needs and grows to adjust to changing needs. A home filing system should allocate a place for everything such as mails, bank statements, bills, receipts, advertising fliers, etc. A home filing system should put an end to the seemingly endless struggle to find papers. Find a space in your home — like a filing cabinet or a drawer — to organize paperwork in your home filing system.
Use folders in your home filing system. This will allow you to categorize your papers. You can put all business and financial related documents such as bank statements, receipts, tax returns, etc., in a folder. Other categories should be placed in other folders. For example, personal documents like birth certificates and medical information, should get their own category and folder.
You can also put a document in the top folder that guides you to where you placed your files. This would help you to save time going over a whole folder full of documents. Remember to keep your home filing system simple. Use categories that are broad enough so that you’re not using one document per folder – otherwise you may end up sorting through hundreds of folders instead of hundreds of documents.
Label everything in your home filing system. This is most helpful to spare you from groping your way through the chaos. You may remember what you put in the folders now, but tomorrow, you will forget. Once you get the hang of a home filing system, you can easily access files.