Every time I load my washing machine and press the start button I say a little “thank you” to God that I don’t have to spend my day beating dirty clothes against a rock down by the river. You can imagine how excited I get about the resources available at the click of a mouse via the Internet. Every time I need a recipe, want to know the lyrics to a song or have to find a moving company for a client, I say a little “thank you” to Google.
I’m in my mid-40s, which means that I graduated college before computers were in every home, let alone wireless and portable. But as a writer/perfectionist, the savings on Wite-Out and the promise of turning out flawless documents convinced me to find my way around a computer as soon as I could get my hands on one.
I remember clearly a venerated wine writer who refused to get a computer and continued to turn in articles written via typewriter well into the new millennium. Today, someone without computer skills is practically unemployable as a writer (but perfectly acceptable as a politician — just ask Rod Blagojevich). There’s nothing morally or artistically superior about not using a computer and it’s healthy for the brain to learn something new. I encourage my clients to continually sharpen their computer skills, which are vital to being organized and connected in today’s world.
If you need to get organized, or just want to get the latest gadgets and tips, the internet is an amazing resource. Here are some of my favorite sites to give you an idea of what you can find:
• www.organize.com: A site full of great organizing tools.
• www.tsa.gov: The Transportation Security Administration, where you will find important updates and recommendations for traveling. If you’re wondering if you can pack three ounces of shampoo in your carry-on, this site will have the answer.
• www.davidco.com: From the Day Timer to the iPhone, David Allen has been on the forefront of the personal productivity industry and was my initial inspiration to get into organizing, back in 1998 (I turned pro in 2006). For me, there is no better methodology for achieving your goals than David’s “Getting Things Done.”
• www.scandigital.com: So many of my clients want to know how to get their old VHS or 8mm film digitized. This is a useful site for finally getting rid of those bulky video tapes.
• www.wikihow.com: Want to know how to convert cassette tapes to CD? That and so much more is available on this incredible site. A “wiki” is a site that can be instantly updated or edited by users with no programming knowledge required. www.wikipedia.org, an online encyclopedia, is another astonishing resource—but unless you’re still living offline, you knew that.