Label Your Items|Organizing

5 Amazing Ways to Label Your Items

hanging labels say like

Label Items
(freedigitalphotos.net, freedooom)

When you label your items you make life so much easier. One of the benefits of organizing is that you don’t have to label everything. Check out my previous blog: “Tips For Storing Items.” One of the points that I make is that if you store items in clear containers it may greatly reduce the need to label. Consider the W’s of labeling:

  • Who
  • What
  • Why
  • When
  • Where

Labels are intended to be functional and serve a purpose, not just look pretty. As your San Diego Professional and Personal Organizer allow me to share these organizing tips and my 5 Amazing Ways to Label Your Items:

  1. Who needs to know what is in there? Do you live or work alone? If it is just for your information then you have an easy way to get organized and label things. What if you are organizing for other family members, roommates, or coworkers? Consider shich makes more sense to use… words or pictures? You can assist others with independence and easily finding and storing things when you are labeling appropriately for children, second language learners, or elders’ needs.
  2. What is in there? Use simple one word labels whenever possible. Don’t make your labels complicated.
  3. Why are you labeling the storage container or folder? It is an efficient way to store and retrieve what you need, when you need it. Do you really need to put a date on the label? Include dates only when necessary such as distinguishing one tax year from another.
  4. When do you label? Only label when the contents are not obvious. Easy solutions include clear containers, colored storage containers for seasons and holidays, etc. Also, don’t get hung up on whether you use a label maker or print the labels by hand.
  5. Where do you place the label? It seems obvious however there are considerations. This is especially important when you are planning a move. I highly recommend that when it comes to hanging files and folders within that you place the labels in the same place every time. For instance, the tab on the hanging file should be aligned left or right; be consistent so that they eye doesn’t have to waste time and travel. When you label the manila folder inside of the hanging file, the label should always be on the opposite side of the hanging file tab. This makes it easier to see. That brings me to another Professional Organizer’s recommendation; use single cut tab folders rather than 3 or 5 cut. What about labels for boxes and bins. These larger types of storage containers may need labels on 2-4 sides so that if they are moved or not put back the same way you can still identify what is inside.

Some final notes…Avoid labels that say “confidential documents”, “important papers”, “financial records” to maintain security and confidentiality. A file that says “passwords” can be a big problem. Also, utilize labels that are erasable, washable, and/or easy to remove. It you are labeling big rubber tubs, find extra-sticky labels that don’t fall off.