Organize Your Files Week — The third week in April. Eileen Roth, author of “Organizing for Dummies,” recommends these quick checklists to get organized.

Use W-A-S-T-E to decide whether something’s worth keeping:

  • W — Worthwhile. If the item isn’t worth saving, toss it. If it is, move on to the next four questions.
  • A — Again. Will you use this item more than once?
  • S — Somewhere else. Can you find it somewhere else or borrow it if you need it?
  • T — Toss. Will anything happen if you throw it out? If you need it for tax or legal reasons, for example, keep it.
  • E — Entire. Do you need the whole thing, the complete catalog, for example, when you only want to order from one page? If not, keep what you need and toss the rest.

Use R-E-M-O-V-E to clear off your desk:

  • R — Reduce all the distractions on your desktop, such as knickknacks or this morning’s mail. Put them on top of a file cabinet or bookcase instead.
  • E — Everyday use. Only keep things you use often on top of your desk.
  • M — Move items to the preferred side, whether you’re a “righty” or “lefty.” Put the phones, pens, pencils and pads within easy reach. Put the telephone on the opposite side so you can write with your preferred hand.
  • O — Organize like items together so you can find them easily.
  • V — View your time. Keep an organizer and clock on your desk.
  • E — Empty the center. Clear off space in the middle of your desk so you can work on the project at hand.

Use R-A-P-I-D Response to sort mail and create stacks for each category:

  • R — Read. Magazines, newsletters, etc.
  • A — Attend. Notices and invitations for seminars, workshops, meetings.
  • P — Pay. Bills.
  • I — Important. All unknown incoming mail that needs sorting.
  • D — Dump. Mail you know you won’t read or need.