The blog

Previous article

Next article

16 Sep

To not see what you do not need, until you need it

Datum: 2009-09-16 23:35

Are you drow­ing in piles of paper on your desk? It may be piles of doc­u­ments that you do not need at the moment but can’tthrow away because you know that you will need it lat­er; next week, next month or next year?

The solu­tion to this is called the tick­ler file”. 

My tick­ler file has helped me to always have a desk emp­ty of paper and at the same time have easy access to the doc­u­ments that I need today. As it has done won­ders for me, I rec­om­mend the tick­ler file as often as I can. Even so here.

The tick­ler file

The tick­ler file is 44 sus­pen­sion file fold­ers in a box. 31 of the fold­ers are marked with the num­bers 1 to 31. 12 of the fold­ers are marked with the twelve months and one fold­er is marked Next year”. 

If I face the front of the box, the fold­er clos­est to me is marked with tomorrow’s date fol­lowed by fold­ers rep­re­sent­ing the remain­ing dates of the month. The fold­ers there­after con­tain the fol­low­ing 11 months and after the fold­er Decem­ber comes Next year”.

Today’s set­up

Let me give you an exam­ple. Today, it is the 16th of Sep­tem­ber. In prop­er order the box con­tains the fold­ers 17 – 31, Octo­ber, 1 – 16, Novem­ber, Decem­ber, next year, and then Jan­u­ary until September.

How to use your Tick­ler file

To clear my desk I have been stor­ing away all the papers from the piles where they belong in the sus­pen­sion file fold­ers in the Tick­ler file box. The invi­ta­tion to a sem­i­nar is placed at the date before the last day for sign­ing up (since I want to decide lat­er whether I am attend­ing it or not). The agen­da for the next board meet­ing is placed at the date the meet­ing will be held et c. In the fold­er August” I have put the receipt for some­thing I have bought, as the war­ran­ty runs out then, but not sooner.
Every morn­ing I pick up the doc­u­ments that are need­ed dur­ing the day from today’s file fold­er. Then I put the fold­er after yesterday’s fold­er, which now rep­re­sents the same day num­ber, but next month.

The mate­r­i­al you need and still an emp­ty desk

If you have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to try a tick­ler file, I rec­om­mend you to do so. It is an amaz­ing feel­ing to have an emp­ty desk and at the same time be cer­tain that the mate­r­i­al I will need tomor­row will appear” automatically.

How does this work for you?

Send me an e‑mail with your expe­ri­ences of using a tick­ler file and if you have more sug­ges­tions on how to use it. You can always reach me at {encode=“” title=“”}. Most cer­tain­ly, I will share your ideas with oth­ers and I know they will be grate­ful to you for sharing. 

Lis­ten to this post.