Place a stacking tray (preferably an integrated tray with at least five or six slots) atop the filing cabinet to centralize all items to be filed. Label each slot with the labels of the filing cabinet drawers.

Bills

Keep all bills to be paid in one place (perhaps in the desk sorter where they can’t be overlooked).

If paying all bills at the same time, designate a “Bill Payment” day to be used consistently each month.

Set a monthly or bi-monthly recurring “Bill Payment” task with a 30-minute reminder.

If paying bills as they come in, place the bill stub in the respective filing tray and file it on the designated filing day.

A software program such as Quicken, or a simple spreadsheet may make bill tracking easier. However, time to learn the program should be considered.

Part II – Using Microsoft Outlook to Stay Organized

Microsoft Outlook incorporates email, calendar, contacts, tasks, journal, and notes, and allows drag-and-drop between functions. For example, you can drag an email message into the task folder to generate a new task, or drag a contact card into the email inbox to create a new email message. Outlook also allows the user to categorize every entry, creating the ability to sort by category. Some of the key features of Outlook are listed below.

Mail

Outlook’s email program can be used alone or with Microsoft’s MSN Network, Yahoo! and other Internet programs.

Monthly cost for the service ranges depending on what package is purchased.

Calendar

Create, edit, share and move appointments and events.

Set reminders so you’ll never forget an appointment.

Drag and drop appointments to different days.

Set recurring appointments or events (i.e., birthdays, anniversaries)

Contacts

Detailed electronic business card that also includes fields for up to 3 email addresses, web site, home and business addresses, and information about the contact person.

Create a new email message, letter, meeting request, appointment, task or journal entry from within the contact card.

Call the contact by phone or computer from within the card.

Tasks

Detailed task list that includes fields for subject, start and due dates, status, % complete, reminder, notes, date completed, total work hours, mileage and billing information

Set reminders ranging from minutes to months.

Check off tasks as you complete them, and set an option to view completed tasks.

Journal

Automatically record user-selectable journal entries, including Microsoft program files, contacts and all entry types).

Includes fields for entry type, start time and duration, company and notes.

Automatically track the duration of phone calls.

Notes

Create electronic “post-it” notes.

Outlook Folders

Create and rename Outlook folders and subfolders.

Invaluable for sorting email and other Outlook messages.

Use like an electronic filing cabinet.

Drag and drop items from the viewing screen (right side) into the Outlook Shortcut folder (left side).

Outlook Today

An at-a-glance view of your week.

Includes calendar entries for the next 7 days, message count and tasks.

Outlook Today can be set as your default so that it is the first screen that opens when Outlook is opened.

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