Harry Wolff

You can't escape my laugh.

Spring Cleaning

March 28, 2010
Read time 2 minutes

wpid-fileCabinets.6PUCdTGyg2BO.jpgThe importance of keeping things organized is a time consuming act. I like knowing exactly where my belongings are. I get great joy from being able to tell someone with complete certainty if I have the item they want and exactly where it can be found.

This type of organization and categorization doesn’t happen overnight. I spend a lot of time making sure that everything belongs somewhere. If something doesn’t belong somewhere then I invent where it should be belong. Sometimes I pick the wrong place and have to revise my categorizations. Usually I kick myself for lacking the proper foresight to predict with absolute certainty where something belongs, but as the old saying goes, “Hindsight is 20-20.” So I try and leave my behind as kick-free as possible.

This weekend I cleaned up my digital media collection. I like keeping a digital copy of all my media and having them as organized as possible makes my life easier and more enjoyable. This wasn’t the first time that I’ve organized my media, nor was it the second. I force myself to clean up the organization of my media as my library grows. As I add to my library I do certain low-cost organization tasks that make my eventual batch cleanup easier.

This batch clean-up process took almost my entire Thursday evening. I had been putting it off for longer than I usually do and as a result when I sat down to actually clean-up my files it took a lot longer. However it was worth it. Now my media is neatly organized and I can locate the exact file I want very quickly.

Organizing digital media is a very time consuming process, one that should be out-sourced to a third-party if you can. For example, I think it is much more efficient and practical to pay for Netflix’s On-Demand movie streaming service. Not only do you get access to their large library but it is also neatly organized and categorized, making the entire movie choosing-and-viewing process easy and enjoyable. Compare this to sitting at home and spending time creating a copy of the DVD’s you own, importing them into a digital media server, and then categorizing each digital DVD copy. It’s a boring and monotonous process that isn’t for everyone. Unfortunately for me I like inflicting this type of punishment onto myself (also I am highly particular in the organization of my media).

On the complete flip side of the coin some people love being lost in their mess. I love the idea of an organized mess. To me it sounds like beautiful chaos that I appreciate aesthetically but find functionally broken. However it works wondrously for some people.

So with Spring approaching take some time one evening to organize a part of your life that you use frequently. Get it neatly categorized and understand why and how things go where you put them. I think it’ll make your life easier. If it doesn’t then it’s very easy to undo. Just hit Ctrl-Z.