I know many people who move through life with ease get stuck on what to do with their family photos. It’s like there is a well-believed myth that there is a “right” way to organize photos and if you didn’t learn it, or instinctively know it, you’re somehow a lesser human.
Your mom, sister, best friend, mother-in-law tried to teach you, tell you, show you the right way to do it but you could just never get it right.
You hired someone to organize your photos and she told you how you “should” do it but alas you could never keep up with the system.
It all feels like a huge mess that you’ll just never get the gist of.
For the record: I’m a life-long organizer, a Certified Photo Organizer, and Queen of the bossy pants. Let me set you straight…ahem….THERE IS NO RIGHT WAY!!!
And anyone who tells you how you “should” do it is full of malarkey and you have my permission to say so.
Here’s the truth. There are many, many ways you COULD organize your photos. Some of the ways are easier, some more complicated but none of them is the way you SHOULD do it. If it doesn’t work with your photos, your life, your circumstance, the way you think, or the way you live it will NEVER work for you. It just won’t. Accept that and move on to what does work for you.
When I tell you how to organize your photos what I’m giving you is a framework, based on what we know now, about the best way to sort and protect your photos. These are industry norms. They work for most people and their photo organizing needs. A consistent system, a central location, and a reliable/flexible platform are really the basis of all photo organizing.
Does that mean it will work for you? No. I’d say it’s a good place to start.
All that being said, don’t be afraid to listen to advice. My goal main goal is to protect your photos for generations. I will always tell my clients to digitize their photos and store them in a cloud service. There are a lot of people who do not want to do that. They want to touch their photos, hold their photo albums, and think the cloud is a data mining conspiracy theory. Who is right?
All good organization starts with your organizing needs and incorporates your individual circumstances. Never be afraid to say what won’t work for you. There is no right way but there are better/easier ways. In the end, the right organizing system is the one you feel most comfortable with and only you can know that.