February: Create a Hot File

Paper and mail everywhere?

With piles of papers and unopened mail on every surface, you feel overwhelmed by all the tasks you need to complete. A better solution is a set of Hot Files or Action Files to hold papers which require action so you can address them in a timely manner.

Set up your personal hot file.

• Set up a bin with select hanging files on or near your desk. Label your files including “this week, next week, to pay, to do, pending, events.” If you have a lot of advance events, projects and appointments, you can set up folders for each month of the year. This simple tickler system is the key to managing paper.

• Use an in-box for the daily mail and papers you collect until you sort and process them. Block time in your calendar weekly to empty the in-box and work on administrative tasks. • I use another box for “to read” as these materials pile up with bulky catalogs and magazines.

• Process the mail. Recycle window envelopes and ads. Shred sensitive materials. Staple multi-page documents. Add bill pay dates and appointments to your calendar and drop papers into their folders. Now you can easily find bills and information for appointments.

Save time, money and stress.

• Cultivate the habit of using hot files daily to keep control of action items. It takes a month to set a habit, so don’t give up.

• For added motivation, indulge in attractive supplies. One saved late fee will more than pay for a beautiful hot file bin and inbox.

• Studies show the average person spends six weeks a year searching for misplaced information. What could you do with that time? You’ll also avoid the stress of missing appointments and payments. You’ll be reinforcing healthy habits.

Need help?

If you’re overwhelmed with a backlog of paper and don’t know where to begin, I can help. As a Professional Organizer, I simplify the process so we handle the piles, boxes, bags and clutter, and set up simple systems custom tailored to work for you.


I offer a complimentary consultation on the phone to discuss your project. If you refer a friend who schedules a four-hour session, you earn a free hour added to your next organizing session. I welcome your emails and calls.

No comments: