One of our readers recently submitted a organizing challenge: “It would be great to hear how to organize papers when working on different projects. I currently have four things I am working on and am in the process of decluttering and re-arranging my space, so any tips along those lines (with photos for inspiration) would be great!”
First, thanks for submitting your challenge! Secondly, I know exactly how you feel! Since I run two businesses, I often find myself working on multiple projects at the same time, each with their own trail of paperwork. I am also a very visual person – if I were to put this paperwork into a hidden filing system it would disappear from my mind, and thus never get finished. For people who need stuff out where they can see if, hanging wall filers are a great option. Here’s how I organize my own projects:
These hanging wall file holders are great, and they come in several different styles and colors. I believe I bought mine both at Office Depot and Staples, and I would guess they are available at just about any large office supply store you would choose. One thing to note, sometimes I wish I would have bought all solid colored ones instead of the clear ones – I like for my paperwork to be easily accessible and visible, but sometimes the clear ones annoy me because I can see TOO much.
If I have multiple categories within my bigger project file, I simply break them up with labeled manila folders:
This makes it super easy when I have a new project I’m working on, I just erase the label and start over! I would like to note that over the past year or so Label Once has changed something about these labels, and I’ve found that the eraser provided doesn’t work as well as it used to. I did however find that using the Target generic version of Mr. Clean’s Magic Eraser works far better than the eraser provided.
Just use whatever permanent marker you have, then when you’re ready to relabel, erase with the Eraser product and you’re good to go!
There are also plenty of other options for organizing your projects. Here’s another one I really like – clotheslining your project.
Although this picture shows hanging kids’ artwork, this would also work great for all kinds of different projects, some of my artist friends in particular come to mind! Ikea has the hardware you need to set something like this up. The two product lines to check out are Deka and Dignitet You could also get creative with what you have available around the house and just make a clothesline from rope or nylon string if you’re on a tight budget.
Do you work from home or at an office where you constantly have multiple projects going on at the same time? Have you found a great way to stay organized with those projects? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!
Holistic Professional Organizer and Clutter Coach at Synergy Organizing, LLC
©Synergy Organizing 2012
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