Keys, phone, wallet. Keys, phone, wallet. You repeat this mantra to yourself before you leave the front door, but it doesn’t work for very long. Soon enough, you’re frantically rummaging through a bag to answer a call before it hits voicemail or you’re patting your pockets on your doorstep, swearing you had your keys in there moments ago.
If you’re tired of misplacing or flat-out losing these three essentials, here is what you can do:
Leaving your keys in different jackets, bags or pairs of jeans will make them easy to misplace. The moment you change outfits, you’ll wonder where they’ve gone and look through every piece of laundry you own until you find them.
One of the ways you can avoid losing your keys is to give them a designated drop-off point that is clearly visible — it can be a bowl on a nearby dresser or small hook on the wall. Make it the official spot where you place your keys while you’re in the house. Before you head out the door, you don’t have to look through pockets, coats or bags. You’ll just pick them up and go.
If you don’t trust that this new home organization habit will be enough, you can use tech to help. A Tile Mate is a small tracking device that you can attach to your key-ring so that you can find it in a hurry. Using the gadget’s free app, you can send out a signal for the device to ring out. Any keys sitting under cushions or stuffed inside purses will be a breeze to find.
If you lose your keys outside of the house, the Tile Mate’s app will show you the device’s location on a map so that you can retrieve them.
It’s easy to lose your phone in plain sight, especially if the sleek chrome, white or black design blends into your furniture. That slim device could be sitting on your couch or slipped between throw pillows, and you wouldn’t even know it.
To prevent this frustrating scenario, make sure your phone can’t camouflage itself. There are a number of iPhone skins that actually look good in eye-catching colors like purple, yellow, orange, blue and red. You won’t miss a bright yellow rectangle resting on top of a dresser or sitting inside of a cluttered bag. A high-quality 3M vinyl skin is simple to apply with a hairdryer and a microfiber cloth, and it can be removed when you feel like swapping it with another design.
There is a difference between forgetting your phone in your bedroom and dropping it at a nightclub. If you’ve truly lost your iPhone, there is a way to retrieve it. All you need to do is use the Find My iPhone app on another device so that you can track your phone and control the data. The app will show you a map of your phone’s current location, so you can quickly get it back.
If you believe the iPhone was stolen, don’t confront the perpetrator. This is not an action movie. You can use the app to lock your phone with a passcode or erase your data to keep the thief out of your personal information.
The great thing about the Tile Mate is that it works with your wallet, as well. If this device doesn’t interest you, there are other Bluetooth trackers that will save you from constantly misplacing your essentials:
- TrackR bravo Generation 2
- XY3 3rd Gen Item Finder
- Chipolo Card
- Orbit Card
Another way to stop losing your wallet is to do away with it altogether. You can turn your smartphone into a mobile wallet, using apps to manage your banking, make in-store purchases and send money transfers. It’s a great idea if you’re running out for a coffee with friends, but you should know that the whole world hasn’t embraced the tech just yet. Many establishments require physical forms of ID and you may find roadblocks with app-payments.
Rest assured, the alternative wallet is going to gain popularity. Cities are allowing commuters to use their mobile wallets and apps like Google Pay to pay for public transit services. Colleges are allowing students to use digital ID cards to get access to their dorms, dining halls and gyms around campus.
Try to break the bad habit of losing your essentials by making them impossible to forget. Cover your iPhone in a bright skin, put your keys in a designated spot and merge your wallet with your phone. As a backup plan, use tech to help you find your items. It’s better to be safe than sorry.