Never Lose An Important Item Again

My Long History of Lost Items

When I was a kid, I lost lots of important items, not just once or twice, but on a daily basis.  I lost lunch boxes, umbrellas, hats,  gloves, and sweaters.  You name it and I lost it.  I left things at school and was made to walk back to get them.  My grandmother used to say, “When your head forgets, your feet have to pay.”    As an adult, I still lost things, causing myself  a great deal of stress.  I kept four complete sets of keys in case I lost the set I was carrying.  I gave spare keys to every neighbor who would take them.  I lost a checkbook and a wallet, both of which were returned to me by kind people who would not accept rewards.  If you have ADD, you understand because you’re more likely to lose things than people who don’t have ADD.

Things got even more complicated when I got my first cell phone, auto makers started making anti-theft keys, and  far-sightedness forced me to begin wearing glasses.   These are expensive-to-replace items.  When you lose a phone, you have to pay a deductible, even if the phone is insured.  Same with glasses.  Then there is the inconvenience of it all, the hours it takes to replace one of these items.  I was forced to come up with solutions and to follow them or go broke replacing things.

What I Did That You Can Do Too

I did four things that made a difference:

  •  Made a habit of  “scanning the area” every time I leave a place.   I can go to a restaurant and place my phone and glasses on the table or my coat on the back of my chair because I know that I will be “scanning the area” when it’s time to leave.  I rarely have that “sick” feeling when I’m half-way home and realize I’ve left something important behind.
  • Placed a basket beside the front door and began  tossing my keys into it every time I came in the front door.  I even suggested to babysitters that they place their keys and cell phones in the basket if they wanted to so they wouldn’t have to hunt them down later.
  • Designated a place on each level of our three-story home where I could place my glasses and my cell phone and made a habit of placing them there when I put them down to do other things.  Having these items in one of three places saves me from a lot of panicky “mad searches.”
  • Stored important items in my bag all the time so I don’t forget to take them when I go out.  It saves me from reaching into my bag and discovering that I don’t have my phone or, if I do, I can’t see it because I don’t have my glasses.  It goes without saying that there is a designated place for my bag on each level of our house.

My Life Today

Life is not perfect.  I do have to rummage through my bag to find things, but at least I know they are there.   Sometimes others move things.  That’s life in a family.

Taking the actions listed above has allowed me to spend less time hunting things down and less money replacing them.  Running through the house like a maniac screaming, “Somebody call me quick so I can find my cell phone,” happens occasionally, instead of several times a day.