We keep a bag hanging on the back of a door for unmatched socks, and when it gets full I go through it to look for matches. It is an oddly satisfying activity. Last night I must have found 10 pairs of socks in there. The feeling of accomplishment that comes with that feat is real.
We need structures for work that is unfinished. For years I’ve used a “Needs Action” email folder; I triage emails to it that I can’t deal with in the minute but that deserve a reply. At least once a week I set aside time to empty it out. Having a place to put those emails manages my stress when they come in. Making time to deal with them keeps me accountable to the people who sent them.
At some point an unmatched sock has to go, though. I find socks at the bottom of my bag that I have attempted to match so many times I can’t accurately say how long they’ve been in there, so I throw them out or re-purpose them. The fantasy that something I have not completed for months and months is going to somehow magically become completed does not serve anyone.
What’s your unmatched sock bag?