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Reflections

Slimming your wallet

by , June 17, 2010

costanza

There is no excuse for a Costanza wallet. It gets in your way, it cramps your style, and it broadcasts an inability to control the details.

If you are suffering from a brick of a wallet, or know someone who does, we’ve collated the 5 key steps to losing the bulge. Please read on…

1. Start with the right wallet
The two wallets pictured in the header image are holding exactly the same number of cards and notes. It’s a radical difference, and if you’re starting with a huge wallet, you’ll find a way to fill it. We’ve rated some nice wallets here. And we’ve also listed the top 5 things to look for in a wallet. Go and treat yourself now, and then come back ready for point 2…

2. Choose your most frequently used cards
These are your top 2 or 3 cards, that get used every week. It’s usually a credit card or two, maybe a security card, an ID or perhaps your VIP card to that special club you frequent. You need to put these in your main access slots, ready for quick retrieval.

3. Choose your infrequent but important cards
These are things like an organ donor card, health-care cards, additional bank cards or business cards. These should be stacked in a more efficient way, usually together in a flat section of the wallet.

4. Collect all the other cards
Club and store cards, membership cards, frequent flyer cards and mementos. These are the ones you’re going to have to remove from the wallet. Any that are just numbers should be stored in your phone contacts (eg: Contact: Singapore Airlines, Number: 666 666 666). If you’re really fancy, take pictures of the cards and store the images in Evernote with appropriate tags.

5. Lose everything else
Photos belong in your phone. Receipts should either be processed and removed each night, or if you are feeling ready for it, read the appendix below. Notes are needed, but coins should stay out of your wallet because they add huge bulk and destroy cards. Coins can go in a regular pocket, in your coin pocket, in your bag, or just give a better tip and lose the schrapnel.

Shedding wallet bulk feels like cleaning your work desk. It frees your mind, and makes anything seem possible. You really should go and do it now…

Appendix:
Black belt receipt management: If you want a really good way to deal with receipts, Evernote is now making it possible. Every time I get a receipt I need to process, I take a photo of it with my phone, email it to a custom Evernote account email, and then throw away the receipt. I later go in and process all the receipts virtually, with easy tagging and word recognition for any quick retrieval. It works a treat.

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