Filer or Piler?

This is a great question, are you a filer or a piler? When it comes to the letters, papers, magazines etc coming into your home do you file them away or do they languish in a pile?

There is encouragement everywhere to set up a good filing system, but some of us just can’t quite get there. We start with good intentions and manage a few days of filing everything neatly away, then slowly but surely, the piles creep back. Some items might be needed soon, some bills might need paying soon, school information needs to be to hand, sound familiar?

Well apparently us pilers shouldn’t try try too hard to become filers as it won’t work, we just revert to type. According to Houzz contributor Alison Hodgson:

“I read an article in a magazine years ago that changed my life. In an interview a professional organizer essentially said, “There are filers and there are pilers. Too often pilers try to turn themselves into filers, and they shouldn’t.” I was astonished. Cue the heavenly chorus; it was as if I’d been given permission to be myself after years of trying — and failing — to organize my papers…”

What a relief to read that! I suddenly feel lighter and not so guilty!

Alison has found her own solution to the piles of paper which accumulate, read the article below to find out more….

Has this happened to you? You need to find something fast, maybe a permission slip or a receipt for your taxes. You know you have it; you’re just not sure where exactly. Is it in the pile of papers by the phone? You paw through them, heart racing. No. OK, what about the stack on your dresser? Shuffle, shuffle, shuffle. Adrenalin is pumping. No. OK, OK — the dining room! Shuffleshuffleshuffleshuffleshuffle! No! The agony! The shame! Nooooooo!

Searching for something under duress is awful. Even though it always left me demoralized, I did it far too often. I tried to change. Ask anyone who has lived with me; I was always trying to get organized. I bought a filing cabinet and on too many occasions, spent hours getting all my papers filed. But I could never seem to sustain it. All too soon papers were heaped on top of the cabinet and in my favorite stashes around the house. I felt like such a loser.

And then — wonder of wonders — I learned I was a piler, which gave me the hope to figure out something that worked for me.


My name is Caroline Sutton and I'm a wife and mother of 3 children, passionate about food, keeping me and my family healthy, gorgeous interiors and shopping! I have a degree in Biochemistry and Pharmacology and continue to be interested in the science behind diet and drugs. I also have a Diploma and City and Guilds in Interior Design and for the last 17 years have run a property company which develops, redevelops and manages rental properties: Sunlight Properties Ltd.

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