I've been telling this story, over and over and over since, um, October of last year, in almost every blog entry about decluttering. Of which there have been more than a few. The story goes like this, basically. Finally, both my kids had school placements that they liked. I did my taxes (you know, 6 month extension means they have to be filed by the middle of October). And then I started decluttering. Not emergency disaster mitigation decluttering, for real, make it look the way it should decluttering. We had previously had a bunch of work done around the house (making the closets not have white wire racks in them, but actual wooden shelves and so forth, type of thing). I got everything that shouldn't have left Seattle back to Seattle, out of the basement. I got rid of a huge number of books. I replaced a bunch of furniture. The house was painted (inside). More furniture was moved out of the house. I donated clothes and shoes and toys and Other Stuff. Somewhere fairly early on in this process, as I was purging the overstuffed (couldn't file more things) filing cabinet, I noticed that about ten years ago I made an effort to get all my bills online, and in the following years, that had undone itself and new accounts weren't online. And I thought about it and realized that was because I kept forgetting passwords. So I said, fine, I'll get a password manager and My Life Changed for the Better. Honest. Get one. They are Amazing.
Every day that the mail is handled in under a minute (to R.'s pile or recycling of those advertising cards that I haven't figured out how to turn off yet), I thank MailStop and CatalogChoice, and LastPass, for enabling me to sign up for new accounts without worrying about forgetting the username and/or password. Every day that the mail is handled in under five minutes, including filling out a form and/or writing a check, I smile. And when there's no mail at all, I do a little happy dance.
At one point, some months ago (I want to say January timeframe, could have been a little earlier or later), I had the remains of what I had left in Seattle shipped out to me, which meant I had a bunch of old files to deal with: tax returns and similar financials, for the most part. I've been on and off shredding them, but the shredder only runs for about 15-20 minutes before it says it needs a break, which makes it the kind of project that, once interrupted, I abandon for weeks. But I'm starting to really notice empty space in the filing cabinets. Big empty space. Not just, can easily file space, but might be able to get rid of a filing cabinet empty space. Hmmm.
And here is where iTunes Match comes in. Because it is now dead easy to download anything from my medium sized music collection to my phone or other mobile device, and I have bluetooth headphones, I can now, on a whim, pick out music I haven't listened to in about ten years (thank you, Push Stars and Spandau Ballet. I had forgotten how much I loved you all. Also, Steve Miller's Book of Dreams), and quite happily work through each file folder, removing everything that is no longer relevant, or really should have been recycled long ago (return envelope never used, type of thing). And now, there is even more empty space in the filing cabinet.
And that's how iTunes Match helps me be more organized.