Closed September 2017

Clutter Video Tip: How to Organize with Sticky Notes (and How NOT to!)

Do you have a post it covering every inch of your computer? Do you write each and every important reminder on a post it note? Has your home office become a sticky notes shrine? Watch this video and pull down all those pieces of paper.

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Hi I’m Lorie Marrero, creator of the Clutter Diet book and on-line program, and today we’re going to talk about ways not to use sticky notes. I’ve seen a lot of workspaces and a lot of offices, and there are good and bad ways to use sticky notes. So let’s look at some of the clever, good ways first – maybe you’ve thought of some of these already yourself – but obviously quick reminders are perfect for this. Writing notes to other people; quick reference information, like postage rates or graphic design numbers that you need to have handy on your computer monitor, very frequently; and of course temporary labels that you need to make, very quickly; and even things like driving directions that you can write down and stick directly onto your steering wheel while you’re driving. If you have a really large file that’s really thick and you need to sub-divide that, you can quickly and cheaply make tab dividers with sticky notes. And my favorite is bookmarks. I have my friend Aviva’s recipe book here that I frequently use, and I have bookmarked the pages that I want to go to often. I can actually write the name of the recipe right on there and go to it very fast. My friend Dane uses a clipboard with sticky notes on it for his errands and shopping lists. He has a sticky, as you can see here, for each store where he keeps a shopping list and then when he’s ready to go out the door, he grabs the sticky for that store and he’s on his way.

So those are some of the great, clever things you can do, but what you don’t want to do is use stickies, especially on your computer monitor or your desk, for sensitive information like passwords or financial information, like your credit card numbers. You also don’t want to use stickies as a permanent solution when there might be something better, like a piece of software that will remind you digitally on your computer instead of having it on your monitor, or using a label maker to make a little notification for yourself rather than constantly having this worn out wrinkled sticky that you look at every day.

You also don’t want to use sticky notes as wallpaper. I’ve seen workspaces with a dozen, or 20, or 50 sticky notes all around the monitor and the wall and those really lose their effectiveness quickly. If you’re going to use a sticky note as a quick reminder, like this – “pick up dry cleaning” – that works because there’s an element of surprise and novelty to that. You’re not expecting to see it. But if you have wallpaper all around you with sticky notes, that is not going to be very noticeable.

You also don’t want to use stickies as your primary time management system. A lot of people might write a note here or there, and they have these loose pieces of paper and stickies everywhere, and that is a recipe for disaster. If you want to have a notebook, if you prefer paper, try to have all of your “to do’s” and tasks written down into this one notebook in one place instead of loose and flying around on little bits of sticky notes.

If you need a better reminder system, especially for some of those really difficult reminders, like the recurring things – dog’s medication every month, or the air filters that need to be changed, or the water filters – we have a tool for that in our Member Area. It comes with your Clutter Diet membership, and you can find out more about that at

See you next time, and may you always be happy and grateful for having more than enough.

You may have been searching for functional reminder tips or uses for sticky notes.

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