Sunday, July 31, 2016

All I needed was a little motivation

 

Let all things be done decently and in order. (1 Corinthians 14:40)

Ouch! I read this Bible verse and was immediately convicted. I have a file folder on my hard drive simply named, “Genealogy.” This folder is a catch-all for everything I don’t want to deal with at the moment. I keep hoping that everything will just magically process itself.  I have been pretending that since I have this folder organized with nice subfolders that I was handling the materials effectively.  Nope.  I was just procrastinating big time. 

I read two good books this past week.  I bought them specifically to try and get myself motivated to clean all this stuff up.

Even though I am a seasoned researcher I found both of these books very helpful. They are not just for beginning researchers.

So far it is working. I have processed more than half of what I have in this folder. Funny thing is, some of it I was able to just delete.  It was taking up needless space and making me think I had more to deal with than I actually do. 

My error is that I don’t deal with things immediately as they come in which is a major workflow problem. When you have a lot of things coming in at the same time on different projects it is just too easy to just throw it all in a folder with the intention of getting to it eventually.

I was already using Evernote but I needed to do some serious cleanup there too. I have Evernote all nice and tidy now. One thing that I needed to move from my Genealogy folder to Evernote were all of my reference materials I have been collecting, things like e-books, PDFs of cemetery surveys, PDFs of document indexes, class syllabi, etc.  What’s nice about Evernote is that the contents of these files are now searchable which saves me a ton of time.

There is a lady that pulls documents for me at the Family History Library.  She names the files with everything I need to create a full citation.  Because of that, I can park these files in this folder and not worry about forgetting what they are or where they came from.  I have quite a few that I need to rename, save to my main Media folder and link to Legacy.

With DNA being the big thing right now I have a ton of DNA stuff in this catch-all folder which I need to sort through.

I want to have the folder empty by the end of weekend so that I can start fresh on Monday morning and I think I will meet that goal.  Thanks, Drew and Kerry.

Next time I will tell you what my #1 favorite feature of Evernote is.

 

Copyright © 2016 Michèle Simmons Lewis

4 comments:

  1. Very inspiring Michele. I've been creeping up on organizing piles in my office. How in the world do these piles happen? Yes, just like you, I'll look at them later. I don't create paper, however, I have some cousins who don't "do" digital and they are kindly mailing me large stacks of information. Like you, only much worse I'm sure, is my Evernote folders need straightening out too. Maybe I can get these done before fall? Wish me luck.

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    1. Paper is the worst because it takes even more effort since you have to scan it too.

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  2. My to-do" folder is my Desktop both in the real world and on my PC. My overflow folder in the real world is called "Arm Chair". I think I'll make a folder on my PC with that name as well

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  3. LOL! I'm guilty of doing exactly the same thing. Researching is so much more fun than organizing!

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