Lots of programs exist to help businesses get lean and not spend wastefully but we as anglers don’t often think about it. So let’s think about it now: Organization can save you money.
In the business world and specifically the Toyota Way, the organization process puts everything in its place and only the amount you need. That’s also hard for us fishermen. I am guilty of not putting things back where they go when I am done and especially guilty while on the water. I’ve changed my organization methods in the last few months and it has resulted in a significant savings. So much in fact I was able to purchase a St. Croix rod for an upcoming trip!
So how did I do it?
First, you need an organization system that is transferrable to multiple applications. This method I used for my saltwater gear but it can be used in fresh as well. I like to wade fish a little bit and of course kayak fish when down at the coast so I need a box or bag that can hold multiple boxes. I found a soft sided bag that took the same size boxes as my wading belt did at Cabela’s. I mapped out how I wanted to organize them (hardbaits, softbaits, shrimp, leaders, etc) and then got to work.
The sort is the hardest part. When you haven’t been organized and you are moving that direction, it can be slow. This project, for just six small boxes, took about two and a half hours. I was able to give each box a purpose. Only things of that style go in. Each thing in that category has a special spot. If it’s empty, I need it. If it’s low, I need to look for a good deal. If it’s full, I need to quit buying it. Before the project I was under the impression I needed white jig heads. So much so I bought them on three different occasions. After the sort, I know I have way too many. I have been into fishing stores a lot since the sort and have spent no money. The cash I had set aside for terminal tackle and hard baits I didn’t need. I found a good deal on a St. Croix rod yesterday and was able to buy it with funds saved this way over the last few months. Without the sort, it wouldn’t have been possible!
Another important thing to think about past the boxes in the bag is additional storage places. When in the salt I carry Boomerang Snips, a pair of bait shears, two pairs of pliers and a bunch of pre-rigged popping corks in addition to everything else. So what am I saying? I need pockets! And lots of them! I had it in the back of my mind as a secondary concern and luckily it panned out.
The final thing, and possibly the hardest, is staying organized after the fact. My plan is that when I cut something off the line, it goes back in its spot. My reward if I do this is saving cash by not buying multiple or unneeded items. My second reward is buying cool gear I do need with the saved money. I am determined to stick to the budget but still want cool gear. This is a new way to do that (at least for me).
How do you get organized? Let me know in the comments!