Be honest with yourself. When is that last time you logged in to your Ancestry.com account for the sole purpose of working on those records you’ve saved to your shoebox?
Your shoebox is a holding bin for those items you find, but don’t have the time at that moment to scrutinize or figure out where to put it. A nice touch, I think, because I use it A LOT. But, if you’re not self-disciplined enough to come back to them regularly for clean-up, you’ll find your shoebox may be overwhelming! Not to mention, you may be missing a key piece of information which could help you with your research.
Generally, these are not my direct-line ancestors or I would tackle them right away and not save them here for later because I like to stay on task and not be distracted by another find, though there are some exceptions.
Once in a while, I set aside time to go to my shoebox and work exclusively for a specific period of time. I usually set a timer for an hour, for example. Otherwise, it’s never getting done. After an hour, the timer goes off, and I can come back another day. But at least I’ve given an hours time to working on something that I would otherwise put off entirely because I don’t think about it!
Practice self-discipline to tackle those things that you don’t want to have to do – some people call it “eat your frog”. I keep a list of long term or ongoing projects like this called “Current Initiatives”, inspired by the book by Mark Forster called Do It Tomorrow and Other Secrets of Time Management. I address these projects a little at a time knowing that I am making progress on all of them. That gives me the satisfaction of knowing that I am not neglecting them or forgetting to work on them at all.
Did you know you can also go here to find items you’ve downloaded or printed? Look at the image above at the tab behind the “saved records” tab. I really like this feature for going back to a history of what I was working on last.
So, have you worked on your shoebox items lately? How do remember to go back to it? Maybe this post was just the reminder you needed!Copyright © 2010 Joanne Schleier