File Organization and Desktop Decluttering

A while ago I decided to try out a new way of organizing my files, which basically consists of having five shortcuts on my desktop where all my stuff goes. This is more of a way to get rid of my Work-In-Progress folder that I never ever looked at, and of exchanging my always cluttered but rarely cared about New Stuff folder.

The system I use now is described at and tells you to have the following folders:

0. Inbox
1. Actions
2. Incubate
3. Current Projects
4. Archive

After a few months now I find that I only ever use 0. Inbox and 4. Archive. The Archive has shortcuts to all the important folders on my hard disk. You know, if I go to D:, I can see all the other folders, too, that I don’t usually need, like Programs and system folders and stuff. So Archive is convenient, but I’ve been using the simple program Everything a lot lately to find my files, so that’s also why I don’t use Archive as much as you’d think I would.

Actions, Incubate and Current Projects are very similar, so I never know which folder I put something in that I wanted to work on. I suppose this might be a lot more obvious if used at work, while I use this system at home. I don’t really have any real projects at home, except that maybe I want to go through my folders to look for digital photos I should print for backup purposes (is that Actions? Incubate? Current Projects?) or images for a future blog post that I’ve been too lazy to write as of yet (Actions?). I’m considering changing the structure to:

0. Inbox
All the stuff that comes in during a day, so I could empty this every weekend and spread it to my archive folders.
With another urgent title I’ll never pay attention to. This should be all the actions I want to do really soon, so ideally this would be empty at the end of every day. Well, in a perfect world.
2. Incubate
Projects I’ve had in my head for a while, like a blog post I want to write, or the photo backup project, etc. When this gets too full or I get too bored, I can start doing those things.
3. Archive
This stays the same it is now.

I will report back on how this will work out for me then. Maybe one day there will actually be someone who cares to read about it. :)

2 Replies to “File Organization and Desktop Decluttering”

  1. The Action “replying to your email” as been sitting in my “Incubate” folder for so long I shall move it to the “Today” one ;)

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