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Finding it When You Need It

Eye Glasses • Keys • Felt tip Markers • TV Remote Control
• Scissors • Batteries • Matches • Rubber Bands • Light bulbs

What do these items have in common? These are items people often can’t find when they need them! Can you relate? Welcome to the club of the frustrated!

storage drawer There is nothing so frustrating as running late for an appointment and not being able to find the car keys or knowing that somewhere you have a battery for the clock but not knowing where you put them last time you bought them.

Some of these items are supplies (such as the batteries) while others are tools (such as the remote control). Supplies are consumable items and tools are non-consumable items you use to do a task.

Here are some tips to help you from losing those easily lost items:

• Decide on a location to keep each item. Once you’ve decided on a home for the items, decide if you need to put them in a container and find or buy an appropriate storage container.

• Label the tool with the location of where you want to store it and label the container with the name of the tool or supply that belongs in it. For example, you would write on a blade of scissors the word “kitchen” if they belong in the kitchen. And you would label the container that the scissors belong in “Scissors.” Every time you see those labels you are unconsciously reinforcing in your mind where items belong.

• Create a habit of putting a tool away. If you find yourself not putting it away, repeat the entire sequence of events with the correct conclusion. For example, if you don’t put your car keys away, go back to the car and re-enter your home and put the keys away. Doing this will help teach you the pattern involved in unconsciously putting your keys away.

• Buy extras tools as emergency backups. Have an extra key made for your car, label it and put it away. It should be kept in a different location than your regular keys and it should be used only in emergencies when you can’t find your original set.

• Keep your supplies stocked. Decide how many AA batteries you want to have on hand. When you open the last package, put it on your shopping list. You could even have a system where you put a post it note that says “Buy 60 watt light bulbs” on the last bulb so that someone could pull off and put on the shopping list.

• Involve your family. Teach the concept of cooperation in putting away tools and restocking supplies so that all members of the household can find what they need when they need it.

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