The One-Minute Organizer Plain & Simple

The One-Minute Organizer Plain & Simple by Donna Smallin is a small format book that jams 500 tips into 282 pages. The tips aren't long and drawn out. They are short, sweet, and to the point. So you get a tip like "unclutter your mind. Get in the habit of writing things down rather than tryign to remember them." Obvious? Perhaps - but oh so useful! I keep a notebook in my purse, one by my bed (with a glow in the dark pen) and a pad on my desk. That way if something comes to mind I jot it down, and don't forget it.

How about "shred receipts for items you no longer own." Certainly that cuts down on paper clutter! But I go even a step beyond on that - I have an easy to use receipt scanner and I scan all the recipts, then recycle them. That way there's no paper clutter at all in the house, and the receipts are always there for tax and other purposes. I've yet to find someone (the IRS, a manufacturer, anyone) complain when I produce my scanned copy as proof I bought something.

The tips are common sense but many people - as we know - sometimes forget about common sense. One tip is "always fill your gas tank wen it gets down to one-quarter or one-half full." I do this religiously. My boyfriend doesn't - and he's run out of gas. It's like the scouts say, be prepared. If you plan ahead, you generally don't get caught in an annoying situation.

So many of these tips are just right. "Don't worry about coming up with the PERFECT organizing system for bills or filing. Done is perfect." At some point it wastes your time to further obsess about how you're doing something. If it's working smoothly, focus on the areas that need help.

So, with my praise for this book, are there any complaints? I find the small format hard to use. I imagine it's so you can carry it in your purse and scan it randomly for ideas when you're out waiting in line, but it's too big for my purse. So it's too small to read comfortably, and too big to tote. I'd rather just have a normally sized book that I can read.

Also, the categories are a little iffy. You have "clearing clutter" in one spot and "clutter control" in another. Those are separate from "home management" (my house is full of clutter). I think some work on the categories would have helped me flip through to find what I need help with.

Still, a very useful book with some great tips! Even if you know and follow some of the tips, you're sure to find others that help you improve!

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