Organizing Your Paper, Spaces & Time 

Organized & Productive 
April, 2014   

Now that Easter and Passover have come and gone, we are heading into the thick of one of the busiest times of the year - graduations, weddings, sports play-offs, first communions, spring fairs, parties and the like, and all of the joy and stress that surround them. Staying on top of your time and your space becomes even more crucial to staying in control and sane! Getting organized helps, a
Lisa S. Griffith 
it only needs to take a few minutes every day.

Sometimes, though, we get lost in the  
details and the preparations, and we forget to live in the moment. As you find yourself getting swept up into the whirlwind of activity, take a pause, take time to reflect, and just savor each moment as it comes.

"Happiness, not in another place but this place...not for another hour, but this hour.  
                                                ~ Walt Whitman


 Banish Paper Piles Forever! 



As spring FINALLY gets underway here in New England, the paper piles in our homes and offices get bigger and bigger with each new mail delivery, each new batch of papers your kids bring home from school, and each office meeting, conference and memo delivery. If you are overwhelmed with dealing with the paperwork in your home or office and want to find a way to keep it all under control, try setting up a Command Center.


To get your Command Center started, you will need:


Trash/recycle basket

Hanging file folders

Desktop hanging file box 

2 Paper trays or baskets or bins labeled FILE and ACTION 

For home: a wall pocket or paper tray or basket for each member of the family who receives mail/paper  


Once you've assembled your materials, just follow a few easy steps, and you're ready to go:

  • After you've sorted through the day's mail, incoming paper work, and the papers your kids bring home from school, take a few minutes right then and there to shred, throw away or recycle any junk mail. Keep a shredder close by to make this easy. It takes about 2 minutes to do this on a daily basis. This keeps paper from piling up, and keeps the important stuff from getting lost in the shuffle!
  • For home: when you've gotten rid of the junk mail, delegate any paperwork that someone else needs to take action on to them by putting it into their labeled basket/tray/wall pocket. 
  • Papers that need to be kept for the long-term but do not need an action taken on them should go into your "FILE" tray - to be filed later into your filing system (tax info, insurance policies, etc.)
  • Papers that need to have an action taken on them (bills, etc.), or need to be kept close at hand for short-term reference (schedules, directories, etc.) should go into your "ACTION" tray. This is a temporary holding spot so that you can sort incoming paper quickly and take time to deal with action papers a bit later. 

Those "ACTION" papers will make up the contents of your Command Center:

  • Label a hanging file folder for every area in your home or work life that you receive paperwork for that you either need to save for the short-term (directories, schedules, reference materials, etc.) or on which you need to take action.
  • Put the labeled files into your desktop file box. These are your "action files".
  • Sort the contents of your "ACTION" tray into these action files.
  • Keep your desktop file box in an easy-to-access place near where the mail/incoming papers/school papers come into your home or office. In your office, this is usually right on your desktop. In your home, some great places are your kitchen counter, the bottom shelf of an upper kitchen cabinet, or a kitchen desk.
  • Now everything you need will be at your fingertips, easy to find, and not cluttering up your desktop or kitchen countertop!

Each Command Center will look different, with action files that pertain specifically to you, your work, or your family. Here are some categories that my clients and I have found useful:

At Work: 
Boss (name) 
Assistant (name)
At Home: 
Kid's Activities 
Medical (for school physical forms and upcoming medical test slips) 
Order (tear out page from catalog and save here for future consideration)
Sports team name 
Name of child (for papers concerning them)

For Both Work and Home: 

To Pay  (bills)

To Go  (events - mark on calendar first!)


Data Entry  (info that needs to get into your computer - addresses, etc.)


Waiting on Response

Current Projects  (insert a labeled file folder for each project into the hanging file.)

Read  (keep these papers in a file folder which hangs inside the hanging file, so you can carry it with you on the road.)



Any paper that comes into your life, whether at home or at work, that needs to have an action taken on it, or needs to be kept at your fingertips for the short term, should have a place in your Command Center. This gives all of those papers that clutter up your desk and your countertop a place to live, and makes them easy to find when you need them. Think of the time and energy you will save when you can put your hands on exactly what you need when you need it - and banish those paper piles forever!


Like us on Facebook

Good things come to those who "like"!   
Check out my Facebook page for 
for up-to-date organizing tips, new products, workshops and events. Click the "like" button and become eligible for special offers only available to fans. Share your organizing challenges and successes with others and stay on top of what's new in the world of organizing!


Organized & Productive



 View our profile on LinkedIn Find us on Facebook  

Help Me Spread the Word! 
Your referrals are my best advertising. Do you have 3 friends who would enjoy this newsletter? If you do, take a moment to forward this to them and help me spread the organizing word! 

Reduce, Re-use, Recycle

Earth Day Shredding & E-Waste
Recycling Event
Saturday, April 26, 2014
9 am - noon
East Bay Chamber of Commerce 
16 Cutler St. (next to Tom's Market) 
Warren, RI

Bring up to 4 boxes of documents* to be shredded and old electronics to be recycled to the East Bay Chamber this weekend. All services provided by Doc Shredding Corp. of Wrentham, MA.  

Suggested donation - $2.00 per box

New Ways  
to Get

Pick My Brain + Package
Are you a busy individual with a challenging schedule?

Do you like to tackle projects at your own pace and in your own time?

Would you like to have a written plan and follow-up support to help you achieve your goals?

A combination of a 1 1/2 hour on-site consultation, written action plan, and 3 follow-up phone consultations, the Pick My Brain +  package offers you flexible, expert organizing solutions that you can implement any time, any place, at your convenience. You will get the opportunity to "pick my brain" for my organizing expertise and get solutions tailored to your situation that will fit your busy schedule. Click here for more information.

"Take Back the Office" Day
A full- or half-day interactive workshop custom-designed for your business or organization, combining large group presentations and one-on-one, or small group coaching. Lisa will come into your office and work directly with your staff to implement organizing tips and techniques that will leave your spaces uncluttered, functional and efficient. In just one day, you will be able to "take back the office" and boost your team's productivity in their newly organized and well-ordered workspace!


In order, in joy, 



Lisa S. Griffith
The Organized Way
Organizing & Productivity Specialist/Speaker 
Phone:  (401) 289-0042
Website: www.organizedway.com  View our profile on LinkedIn  Find us on Facebook