4 May 2021

Who’s that girl?




Hey there! It’s April, again. You probably know that I’m the girl behind Ilios Digital Organizing, but is that all you know about me? 

I’ve been running my own business for the last 10 years – first as Life is Now Organizing Solutions, then starting in 2016 as Ilios Digital Organizing.

More than bringing me joy, organizing calms my anxious mind and makes me feel like I’ve got control of my world. I can always tell when I’m stressed – the clutter comes back out and the late night panic returns. You know what I mean, that moment right before you fall asleep when you suddenly realize you can’t remember if you sent that email you promised. Yeah, that feeling.

Avoiding that feeling is one of the reasons I try to stay organized. And helping others achieve that peace of mind is why I started Ilios Digital Organizing.  I love being able to teach others about organizing, helping them improve their productivity and get that peaceful easy feeling that comes when things are where they’re supposed to be.

I was born and grew up in Iowa, lived in Missouri for school, then San Diego for fun, and now am a resident of North Texas. I’m excited to be closer to family, but not too sure about the cold temperatures we had this winter.

Fall is my favorite season, red my favorite type of wine, and I believe there are no bad cookies. Not even oatmeal raisin, although I’ll admit they aren’t my favorite.

And yes, I love cats. I’m that crazy cat lady you’ve been hearing about. #NotSorry #catsrule

If you want to talk cats or Midwest eccentricities or how I can help you get organized so you can gain peace of mind and increased productivity, message me here or set up a Discovery call using the link below.

It’s nice to meet you, and I hope we get to chat soon!

~April

24 March 2021

Coffee and Filters




Coffee, emails about upcoming sales, and Google search results. What do these three things have in common? They’re all things that can be filtered!

I recently worked with a client who subscribed to a lot of mailing lists. Lists for continuing education courses, lists for sales and promotions, and lists for professional chatter (forum activity). She received so many of these emails that her action item emails were getting lost in the mess. Because she didn’t want to unsubscribe – but didn’t need to see these emails right away – filters were the best answer.

Filters allow you to take a specific type of email – from a certain person or company –  and have it skip the inbox, going instead into a designated folder. The email is still there and marked as unread, but it isn’t competing with more urgent action emails in your inbox.

Each email system has its own method of setting up filters or rules as they are sometimes called. It takes a little bit of work on the front end to set up filters, but the resulting increase in productivity makes it worthwhile. Once you have those relevant but not urgent emails in their own folder, you can read them when you are ready. 

If you are a Gmail user, your email may already be doing some of this if you utilize the multi-tab – Priority, Social, Updates, Promotions, and Forums – approach. 

If you need help setting up your email filters, let’s talk! Schedule a Discovery Call and together we’ll figure out the best approach. 

13 January 2021

Do you have a digital storage unit?




For those of us in the digital world, external hard drives and extra USB keys full of old documents equate to a packed storage unit. Many of us use an external drive as a backup drive – utilizing Time Machine or Windows Backup. But what about all those drives that are sitting on our shelf, collecting dust, full of documents we’ve forgotten about? It might be time to review and weed, then purge the files you no longer need.

Don’t worry – you don’t need to sort everything in one day! Just take it one file folder at a time. If you want help, call me up – I love file organizing! Schedule your Discovery Conversation and we’ll take it from there.

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3 November 2020

Comparing apples to apples




Everyone loves choices. Plain Oreo’s or Double Stuff. Oranges or orange juice. Salad or brownies. (Let’s be honest, that last one isn’t really a choice).

Sometimes instead of an easy yes or no answer, there can be too many options to compare. Then you have to figure out, are you really comparing apples to apples? That’s a common question when looking at the big three online document management services – Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive. 

All three offer online document sync, storage, and easy access to items when you need them. Google Drive will give you the most storage for free, true, but that storage is also spread out over your Gmail, Goggle photos and other Goggle services. So is it really such a bargain? OneDrive works seamlessly with Word and Excel documents, but what if you use Pages and Numbers on a Mac? Dropbox offers storage, but not document creation options.

When you’re making decisions about which online document sync service to go with, some questions you want to ask yourself include:

  • How much storage do you really need?
  • Are you willing to pay for storage, or do you only want a free option?
  • Are you planning to collaborate with people? More people use a Goggle account in comparison to either Microsoft or Dropbox.
  • Do you just want to store/access documents?
  • Do you want to create documents?

Figuring out which online document sync option to go with isn’t necessarily an apples to apples choice. For help with asking the right questions, and making a decision with less confusion, let’s talk! Schedule your Discovery Call today!

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27 October 2020

Well of Lost Files




A follow up to last week’s question about where your old files are!

20 October 2020

It’s 10 pm, Do You Know Where Your Documents Are?




In the 70’s and 80’s there was a public service announcement (PSA) that would come on each night at 10 pm, right before the news. It would ask, in a serious voice, if you knew where your children were

The goal was to remind parents to keep their kids at home rather than let them wander the streets. I don’t know if it was effective or not, but the phrase has become part of our social history. And it got me thinking…it’s 10 pm, do you know where your documents are?

No, we’re not trying to keep your forms and letters off the street, but one of the first steps in organizing is figuring out where everything lives. For some people, it’s an easy question to answer – all their documents live on their computer. But for others, the question is more complex.

I held on to some old 3.5 ‘floppy’ discs for a long time before I was able to transfer the data. Right now I know there are used external hard drives and USB drives with files on them collecting dust in my closet. And that doesn’t even get into cloud storage. How many different services are you using to store, share, and access your documents?

When you organize your files, documenting where everything is helps you figure out where everything is going. It’s great to want everything in one place, but that only works if there is room there. And what about those documents that need to be shared? Those usually have to stay in cloud storage until the sharing is done (if it ever is!)

If you’re ready to organize your files, take a moment to think about where everything is. When it’s time to move your documents, we often suggest using the same file structure regardless of what platform/computer you are on – same file setup in Dropbox as on your computer. This makes it easier to file things when you’re in a rush.

Don’t forget, once you’ve got everything organized, it’s time to make sure your backup plan is in place to keep all your files safe! I recommend using an online backup system like Carbonite or BackBlaze.

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Ready to get your files organized? I can help with that! Set up a Discovery Conversation call today and we’ll get started! 

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