Why You Have More Space in Your File Cabinet Than You Think

The term “thickening agent” generally refers to paint and food products, but you might be surprised at how many thickening agents are in your file folders. Unlike gumbo, however, your files are much better off without these thickening agents. Here are six examples:


The Secret to Why You Still Can’t Stay Organized

Being organized requires a balance of three limited resources. The first two are time and space. Much has been written about how to work within the limits of time and space, but there is a third resource that attracts less attention. That resource is energy.

It is possible to clear your space, organize your time, and establish sensible systems for both and still not be able to stay organized, because you lack the energy to maintain those systems.

Don’t Waste A Beautiful Day On Owners Manuals

If you are a true minimalist, toss all your owner’s manuals. You can get that information online.  End of post. The rest of us are not so comfortable with that approach, but would still like a simple solution for organizing owner’s manuals. In my experience as a professional organizer, I tend to see one extreme or another.  Either there is …



As I see it, the whole point of getting organized is to make life as easy as possible so that you can get to the things that matter most. Your organizing energy, therefore, should first go to the items you need to find and use the most.

Homes for Orphan Items

If keeping a tidy home or office seems hopeless, part of the reason may be that not EVERYTHING has a home.  Some categories are obvious – clothes go to the closet, books go to the bookshelf, and used coffee cups go to the kitchen sink – but what about  that spare switch plate? After years of organizing homes and offices, …

Perfectly Disorganized

Originally from Matt Baier’s Organizing Works Newsletter, February 2007


It often takes 50% or more of the total effort to squeeze out the last 10% or so of quality or whatever it is perfectionists want out of a situation. Not a good investment of time. -Jeff Olson, The Agile Manager’s Guide to Getting Organized, 1997