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How to Stop Losing stuff?

Updated on December 28, 2015

Help to Stop Losing Things!

Where is it?

It's hard to be one of those people who regularly wastes time looking for your stuff, so perhaps it is time to look at a couple of tactics and tips you could use to prevent the situation from happening so often.

Losing or misplacing articles apparently happens on average 9 times a day to most people. Cellphones, keys, remotes, sunglasses, and paperwork top the list. Obviously there are many frustrated, folk out there wasting precious time on something that is relatively simple to fix.

Here are a few tips to help you!

The right place: Strangely enough, they could be in their rightful place - so have a good look there. Perhaps it's under some papers, fallen down the back, or underneath something else.

Mindfulness: If you are misplacing the same items constantly, think consciously about what you are doing each time you put an item down e.g. I am putting my cellphone down on the dining room table. That way your memory is invoked and you’re less likely to forget where you put it.

Hotspots – for lost items: Pay special attention when leaving the following hotspots that you have everything you brought with you. Taxis, restaurants, restrooms, shop or office counters, public transport and planes.

Bars: Alcohol is a cruel mistress who elevates the possibility of losing something when you have too much of a good time. So ensure you have a remote wipe app placed on your phone if you are apt to drink too much and tend to get sloppy in the process.

How to find things you Misplaced - Hypnosis Session to Help You

What are you Looking for?


If keys are something you misplace on a regular basis – ensure you have one place at home and one place in the office where the keys are placed. When you walk in the door, that is where the keys go if they are used again, put them back in their place.

If the keys are in constant use, say at work, then clip them on your belt or on a lanyard around your neck. Less likely to leave them lying around if you’re used to having them on your person.

Everything should have a home

Putting something, be it the hammer from the garage, the sticky tape out of the desk drawer, the nutcracker from the kitchen whatever it is, when you have finished with it put it back where it belongs. It may take 10 extra steps now to put it away, but can save hundreds of steps and plenty of time later, when you need it again and cannot remember where you left it.

Get hooked on hooks - if you can put it on a hook, hand it up.

Clutter Causing the Problems?

Where ever there is clutter, your hall table at home, the side table in the office, clear it up and designate it a ‘clear zone,' where anything put on it is cleared away before leaving the office or before going to bed.

Check the clutter daily, and throw out what is not needed, file what is necessary and put the important stuff in the ‘to do’ box for tomorrow. If you do it daily, it’s a small job, which takes a few minutes, better than hours or a whole weekend to clear the build up of clutter.

It is remarkably freeing to clear clutter, it’s amazing how much stress it causes and the relief you feel when it is no longer lying there nagging!

Throw it out immediately if it's not needed again, and if you have an item that you haven’t used or worn in two years – donate it or get rid of it, as obviously you don’t need it.

All about losing things.
All about losing things.


Clutter creates stress and makes it so easy to misplace things.
Clutter creates stress and makes it so easy to misplace things.

How to get organised

Papers and Piling

Piling is not an organization strategy, even if you know exactly where everything is. It really says, “I can’t be bothered to put it away."

Most paper that comes in you won’t need to look at again, so bin it. The 5% of papers you do need try to go paperless as far as possible by scanning and then backing up your papers.

Opt for e-bills, and file your e-documents via Evernote or Dropbox. If you must store paper, use a filing system and file daily.

If you genuinely have a lot of paper that requires attention, have different carriers for them, e.g. receipts in one carrier, accounts in another, and contracts in another. That way they are not a pile on your desk; they are in the correct places awaiting your attention.

Losing Information

Receipts – the last major purchase you made may need a service call, can you remember where it is. There are many online services and great apps that will help you capture your info, or take a picture with your phone and file it under Receipts.

Personal Info – A secure app to keep your credit card numbers, health data, passwords, insurance info – so that it’s all in one place in an emergency.

Solutions: If you find yourself addressing the same issues repeatedly – capture those solutions so you do have to spend time solving the problem twice. (e.g. fix the particular TV problem, replace the fuse in the oven, the data to input to fix your website wobble.)

Information: If you find that you are looking for specific information often, find a method to capture each type of data. The next time you need to refer to it, it will be easily accessible for you.

Summary - Of Lost Things

1. Have logical places to keep things especially keys, remotes etc.

2. Throw unnecessary papers away immediately - scan and store the rest on something like Dropbox.

3. Regularly get rid of clutter

4. Have one of the many apps to store your important information for emergencies.

5. Practice mindfulness, when you put something down you are working with, consciously think, "I'm putting this file down on the boardroom table, while I go to fetch the others."

Follow a Routine

Create and follow a routine will help you avoid losing things and is an immense aid for recovering those misplaced items, as anyone who has retraced their steps will tell you.

Losing Your Mind

“Of all the things that I have lost, I miss my mind the most!”

Last two tips if all else fails!

  • Relax, take a deep breath, and look under stuff, the keys may be under a newspaper, the wallet kicked under the bed. It will eventually turn up.
  • If you are an incorrigible loser of the things, ensure you marry someone who is well-organised to balance your life and help you find things.

George Carlin's funny take on Losing Stuff


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    • CyberShelley profile imageAUTHOR

      Shelley Watson 

      4 years ago

      swilliams, when I haven't lost anything and therefore not annoyed and frustrated - it can be quite funny to sit on the outside and look in and chuckle at the antics we go through to find that darn thing.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Lol!! I love the 'Beautiful South singing "Losing Things" Good Stuff. You wrote about my life. I loose stuff when I'm in a hurry or late. I like this advice Relax, take a deep breath, and look under stuff, the keys may be under a newspaper, the wallet kicked under the bed. It will eventually turn up. Voted up and tweeted out!

    • CyberShelley profile imageAUTHOR

      Shelley Watson 

      4 years ago

      JulieMProvost. Hi Julie, thank you for dropping in. It's amazing how just little things can make a huge difference to our lives.

    • JulieMProvost profile image

      Julie Provost 

      4 years ago from Tennessee

      I am terrible about forget where I put things. I was so excited when we put in a key hook because now I never lose my keys. I always put them up right when I walk in the door.

    • CyberShelley profile imageAUTHOR

      Shelley Watson 

      4 years ago

      peachpurple, Hello - thank you for reading my writing and commenting - much appreciated.

    • peachpurple profile image


      4 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      great tips, i m always forgetful

    • CyberShelley profile imageAUTHOR

      Shelley Watson 

      4 years ago

      billybuc, Hello Bill, I am the finder and replace in the proper place person in my house! Thanks for the visit, and hope you enjoy your weekend!

      Sandra Eastman, Hello Sandra as you can see I'm the tidy one in the house, it's hard for others to change - although I've got everyone putting keys in the one container! Have a great weekend!

    • Sandra Eastman profile image

      Sandra Joy Eastman 

      4 years ago from Robbinsdale MN

      You wrote an article just for me. We've only just became "friends" and you know me so well. Seriously this fits for a great many. Thanks for writing it.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I never misplace things. My wife, always. I'm passing this on to her in hopes it helps in some I don't have to search for her cell phone again. LOL Thanks, Shelley!

    • CyberShelley profile imageAUTHOR

      Shelley Watson 

      4 years ago

      janshares, Hello Janis and thank you for stopping by. I hope you find your doc, soon. I know I sometimes take things to read in bed, if I haven't had time during the day. Thanks for the votes.

    • janshares profile image

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      4 years ago from Washington, DC

      Boy, do I need this hub, CyberShelley. I will have to come back and read again with paper and pen to take notes. I just received an email requesting I send back a hard copy signed doc; I don't know where it is. I can sooooo relate to this. Thank you, voted up and useful.

    • CyberShelley profile imageAUTHOR

      Shelley Watson 

      4 years ago

      Hello Devika, so glad you popped in. Yes that when we tend to lose things, when we are busy and our mind is somewhere else.

      goodnews11, Glad it was useful, in your work I'm sure misplacing things is very irritating.

    • goodnews11 profile image


      4 years ago from CHENNAI

      I always miss place important things. Thank you for the tips.. Helpful.. voted.. up .. interesting..useful..

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Great tips here to help one from not misplacing stuff. Sometimes so much to do and all just gets lost.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image


      4 years ago from USA

      I have married a stacker and a piler. He used to misplace his keys, but now he carries two sets. Helpful stuff here, Shelley.


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