Video: While organising and arranging cables behind your media centre or brand new computer might give you a rush of adrenaline, untangling said cables after you add, remove and rearrange the stuff in your life is always a hassle.
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"So many books, so little time" might be an eye-rolling slogan slightly worse than "Keep calm and carry on," but it's also literally true. As is "so many books, so little space." When you have too many books, how do you decide which ones to get rid of? We asked authors, publishers, and booksellers (all notorious book hoarders) how they keep control of their home libraries.
There comes a time when enough is, quite simply, enough. I had been putting off the task of organising my sprawling Gmail inbox for months, if not years. But when Lifehacker told me that we were going to have a Spring Cleaning week, I knew it was time. And I wasn't going to waste precious hours trying to find apps or tools to do the task for me. I needed to Ron Swanson my inbox -- roll up my sleeves, jump in, and manage the mess manually.
When you're a geek with preferences on USB cable construction materials and a penchant for buying more than a few directional adaptors, organising the yards upon yards of wiring you've accumulated can be a bit daunting. Instead of learning enough knots to compete with the boys at the local yacht club, I turned to the old hook and loop fastener you might know as Velcro. With a single roll of cable-friendly straps, a pair of scissors, and somewhere to put it all, you can organise the tangled web of black cables you've woven around your keyboard or TV.
For everyone subscribed to the philosophy of GTD, myself included, task managers are essential to managing the process digitally. Of course, they're only useful if you actually use them, as evidenced by the trail of task managers I've left in my wake as I search for one with the right combination of cross-platform access, easy task management, and a little bit of sharing functionality. It would also help if it were in a place I wouldn't forget about (or avoid) such as my web browser.
In my first post-university employed position, I worked for a boss who loved Excel spreadsheets. She thought nearly everything could be put into "boxes and rows", and after my first year working there, I was officially a convert. I'm big on organisation anyway, and those spreadsheet cells called to me, luring me in with their promises of order and clarity. Event planning logistics? I had a spreadsheet for that. Airline and hotel reservations for the office directors? Spreadsheet. Goals for the new fiscal year? Spreadsheet.
Last year Instagram introduced Collections, a way to organise your pictures within the app into different curated groups. It's a feature that's been around for roughly a year now, but it's one that most people don't realise is even there.
The sponge is possibly the grossest thing in your house. I say this as someone who regularly comes home from holding a train pole and immediately eats finger food (it's builds character!), but still the sponge disgusts me. It is, by nature, a festering cesspool of germs, a wet thing used to clean dirty things that you let fester in the open while also sucking up all the bacteria in the air. The smell of a dirty sponge is one of the worst household odours, one that lingers on your fingers and leads to me obsessively washing my hands after every single sponge contact. It's like cat urine or black mildew - it's the smell of bad housekeeping.
A while back I decided my apartment looked like a teenager lived there. Video games were front and centre, comic books were lying all over the place, and there were toys strewn about for no reason. So I made my place look a little more sleek, organised, and "grown up" - without sacrificing the things I loved.
Exciting news: There's a new organisational how-to in town. Look out, Marie Kondo, and make way for The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family From a Lifetime of Clutter. The author, Margareta Magnusson, who is "somewhere between 80 and 100," started the process of cleaning out her home and organising her affairs for her heirs, and found it so rewarding that she wrote a book about it.
In iOS 11, you might find yourself tapping and touching apps to find out what new features lay hidden just beneath the force-sensitive surface. If you're one who likes to start fresh whenever you get a new OS upgrade on your device, you're probably going to spend some time arranging apps on the homescreen to your liking.
On earlier versions of iOS, organising apps was a slow and time-consuming process. iOS 11, however, brings with it a simple and welcome change that makes rearranging your apps a little easier.
Honey, syrups, and bottles of oil tend to get drippy and sticky over time and, if you store them upside down (as I do my honey), they can spill all over your pantry, turning your shelves into a tacky mess. Luckily, The Kitchn has a very elegant solution to this: Just store the bottles and jars in a ramekin.
When it comes to household chores, it's nearly impossible to remember what you started, who's supposed to be doing what, and what's still left to do. So you end up with a half-cleared out freezer, a vacuum that coughs out dust clumps ("Wasn't Bob supposed to empty this thing?!"), and a general feeling that everything is always awry.
For years, my morning routine included one or two trips back into the house to grab stuff I'd forgotten to add to my bag. Then I realised the obvious solution, one that could also save me the dreaded walks from one end of my cosy apartment to the other: Just buy another copy of everything. While some instances of this are obvious -- tissue boxes, lip balm -- there's probably some extra item that you could double up on to improve your life. Here are the Lifehacker team's favourites.
For those of us who live in abodes with less-than-sprawling kitchens, counter space is a precious thing, and it can be hard to decide who gets to hang out in the open. Basically, your countertops are a work space, which means you need space to work, and having each and every appliance out can get kind of crowded.