How to keep track of your files on your computer for the electronically challenged

If you’re like me and have trouble finding the on button on your computer, you may one day be faced with the challenge of trying to find a file someone (it wasn’t me!) has “hidden” on the computer. Seriously though, keeping your files organized on your computer from the beginning is the best solution to avoid pulling your hair out looking for it later. So how do you do that?

Saving all your files in one folder such as the document folder is a little like trying to stuff all your clothes in one drawer. It’s confusing, and if you have as many clothes as I do it’s crowded!

If you have a newer version of Microsoft Word you have an “Office” button in the upper left corner of your screen.(It won’t say office until you hover over it.) On older versions it just says “file”. Click on the “Office” button. A drop down menu will appear, select “Save as”.   A screen will come up. In the upper right corner of this screen will be several icons. Scroll over the icons until you find the one that says “create a new folder”. Click on this icon. A box will come up on this screen asking you to name this folder. Give your folder a name that makes sense to you and click save.  You have now created a new subfolder in your Documents folder. Each time you make a new document that belongs in this folder you can add it. Just browse for the right folder and save it to that instead of the default documents folder. For instance you can have a folder titled finances and all financial documents can go in here. You may have another folder titled “articles about essential oils” like I do and all your essential oil articles can go in there. Isn’t that neat?! It makes wading though all those documents so much easier!

So what is you already have a thousand word documents and need to organize them into folders? Here’s what you do. Click on the start button. Choose “My Documents”. Choose “file” in the upper left corner. Some versions say organize. A drop down will appear choose “New”. Then choose “folder”. A new folder will appear on the right in your documents list highlighted in blue. Just start typing the name of your new folder. (When you’re in word and an area is highlighted you don’t need to click on it you can just start typing. If you make a mistake and click on it just click on it again, highlight it and then start typing.) Your file name will show up as you type it. When you’re done click outside the box where your new title is. Look on the left column. You will see all your files. Your new file will be there listed alphabetically. Now you can drag and drop your files into the new folder. To drag and drop just click on the document you want to move and drag it to the left onto your new file. Then drop it. Wa-La! Your document is now in your new file. If you make too many files and need to delete one like I did while writing this article, just right click on the file you want to delete and a box will come up. Pick delete. Just be sure you really do want to delete it!

Now you know how to organize your files! If I could just find that on button I’d be in good shape!