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The Zen of Inventory Management


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I was feeling anxious and depressed earlier today. I went into SL as Alycia, picked up some hunt items, then started sorting her inventory a bit while standing in a quiet Premium sandbox. I had already turned off group messages from the stores I don't want to shop at right now, then closed the windows for other groups. Only one friend had IMed me, but he wasn't bothering me. I realized after an hour or two that I was no longer feeling anxious or depressed. I find organizing and getting rid of stuff to be relaxing, in SL even more than in RL because it's so mentally focused. I thought, I wish I could feel this kind of calm focus toward my RL problems and tasks.

I think there are 2 reasons why this calms me in SL. First because sorting inventory doesn't have the emotional baggage that RL worries and tasks have. There is no one to judge whether I did a good job or not. There is no serious consequence to whether I do it or not. It makes me feel better, but it's something I do only for my own peace of mind and personal sense of accomplishment. 

The 2nd reason why this is calming for me is that I use rational systems for how to sort stuff, so once I've decide on what rule I'm following, I don't have to think too much about what I should or shouldn't do. Following rules that I make up for myself, takes away the worrisome part of decision-making, the part where you keep rethinking the possible consequences of doing one thing or another. Clothing goes in the Clothing folder. If I haven't decided which sub-folder yet, then it goes into the "! Clothing & Accessories to Sort ! folder. I wish Real Life rules were this easy to figure out. 

I started this thread to share ideas for a positive view of inventory management, but if there are other things you do in SL that bring you a similar peaceful state of mind, please share those too. 

In RL I've also come to enjoy a job that others might find mind-numbingly boring. I have a BS in Biology and a 150 IQ, but at this point in my life I want a job that's easy, reliable, and low stress, rather than one that's highly challenging and competitive. I can Zen out on a packaging line and not feel bored, as long as I entertain my mind with positive or neutral thoughts.

 

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When my father was slipping away last month, I found that sorting my inventory had exactly the kind of effect you describe. I didn't want to socialize or talk to anyone: I wanted a relatively mindless task that was, at the same time, somewhat satisfying. Sorting socks probably would have had the same effect. So for about a week and a half I'd log in for the evening, put on my don't disturb autoresponse (which most people respected), and, well, caught up on a lot of inventory sorting.

The other thing I find satisfying, weirdly, is playing around with lighting.

I love socializing, and do chat a lot in-world normally, as well as going to clubs, but it also sometimes frankly feels like work. I have to be in a mood to undertake that. And sometimes I just want me time.

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I'm basically not a crowd person. I come in world largely to enjoy me time.  I have many long-time friends in SL, and we do spend hours each week dancing and chatting.  I wouldn't miss my time with them for the world. Even so, I am most relaxed when I am by myself.  I putter around, making mindless improvements to the landscape, retexuring a rock or wall, tweaking a script, or just sitting on a log somewhere and listening to the birds.  It's all very restful. 

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I have mine to where I can let it go for a week or so, then find a little time to sort things out from my recent tab..

I have it to where it only takes me about 30 minutes now.. Where before I would look at it as this thing I had to take care of one day.

For me it just feels good knowing I have it under control and it won't eat up a day or two.. It's kinda zen just knowing it's always in reach of finishing as long as I keep it that way.. hehehehe

 

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In sl and rl we all owe ourselves peace and happiness.Stress is no good for anyone.We should not worry what others think or their judgment of us.I am very guilty of this but working on changing.Being satisfied in one's workplace is one of the keys to happiness.It does not matter what you do as long as you are happy doing it.I don't have a glam job,pays the bills,absolutely love it even after 10 years.I am treated with respect and I matter.

I love sl,sometimes just want to be by myself too.Usually listen to tunes dancing in my living room.Love the inventory ideas,only way to find stuff is to have a home for it.It doesn't take long to collect a lot of items.Like playing lost and found sometimes in that overstuffed closet of mine.I have even got as far as clothing for different occasions folders.Sure I could have been wandering around meeting nobody lol.Wonderful day all.

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I have an inventory that is currently somewhere around 165k.  I could probably mass delete 90% of it and never even notice.   I hate the sorting - not at all soothing to me.  If it were possible, I'd gladly let someone have some zen with my inventory.

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When I feel stressed (which is all the time anymore) I love to come into SL and like everyone else, I sort my inventory, adding folders, deleting folders, it calms me because it's mindless and you don't have to be worrying all the time about whether or not, someone is going to tell you, you aren't doing that right. I also love to busy myself around my house and land, moving something from the corner forward to the center or adding a wall here or a bush there. I'm an introvert, so I truly do enjoy my alone time when I'm in SL and by the time it's time for me to return to RL, I find that I am much more calm and focused and I can go back to dealing with all the hassles that RL throws at me.

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One of the best investments I ever made in SL was to get an Inventory Manager (I use CTS Wardrobe with the optional Archive).  I have spent endless hours of fun making getting dressed as easy as possible using the provided tools.  It's utterly pointless in the end, but soothing, and like all great hobbies, a perfect waste of time.

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Great topic!  My inventory was a real disaster area for years and years.  I just didn't have time to keep up with it and so I had "to be sorted" folders scattered throughout my main folders.  Then at the beginning of the covid epidemic, my real life came unglued.  I had planned to retire in March of 2019 and move from California to New England.  All my plans went on hold and I kept working until July, then decided to take the plunge and go ahead despite the lockdown.  My desktop went into storage and I was homeless for a few months.  I went from logging in daily for hours to sporadically logging in once every couple of months.  My inventory just sat there in the unkempt state I'd left it in.

Then I got sick.  Real sick.  In the hospital and facing end stage renal disease.  No time for SL.  Life went on, my health became more stable.  No longer homeless.  My desktop didn't survive the trip and the months in a hot dusty storage facility but now I have my desk with my laptop and my big monitor hooked up and a space where I can log into SL again.  But I'd lost the habit.  I had retired from my SL job hosting and I just didn't know what to do with myself in SL.  The last thing I wanted was to look at my inventory mess.

Through out all the turmoil, I still would check into the forums.  You guys are my people, I like the way you think. And I happened to see the thread about inventory changes to come and it inspired me to log in and just see where things were.  Suddenly I had something to do in SL again.  Putting my inventory in order is strangely satisfying.  There's the fun of discovering cool things I had picked up and forgotten about. 

There's the pleasure in following simple guidelines.  If it's not clothing, it's stuff.  Stuff gets broken down further:

image.png.4c689219601a1f6df4f7de04c69e7f55.png

There's the exciting thrill of realizing I don't want something, that I'll never want it, that I can delete it. There's a place for things I don't want or know what to do with, but am not ready to delete, my WTF folder.

For the past few days, I've been playing in my Furnishings folder.  I had so much fun, it inspired me to play Game of Homes again.  I successfully managed to return my trad in Sweetmarsh and then turn around and get it back again under my alt.  Changed house styles and redecorated. Now I'm house hunting and picking up content creation packs for all the home styles I haven't lived in before.  

I've even done a little bit of shopping!  And my new stuff is already put away in the proper folders.  I still have more work to do with my accumulation of stuff to be sorted:

image.png.d1d00518c81e1350f3581f1b483e4983.png

2017 was quite a year for acquiring stuff, there's over a thousand items in that folder, and I've already put away hundreds of things. 2018 is another 2,000 plus items. 

Inventory management is like dirty dishes.  There's always going to be more to do.  But right now my sink is clean and it feels good.

 

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15 minutes ago, kali Wylder said:

image.png.d1d00518c81e1350f3581f1b483e4983.png

2017 was quite a year for acquiring stuff, there's over a thousand items in that folder, and I've already put away hundreds of things. 2018 is another 2,000 plus items. 

Inventory management is like dirty dishes.  There's always going to be more to do.  But right now my sink is clean and it feels good.

 

I LOVE "plunder" folders ❤️  Kindred spirit.  Cleaning the sink, as it were, right now meself.  Happy Sunday.

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Inventory sorting and categorizing is also super peaceful for me, as well. I don't have a ton of things to sort and order nowadays since I tend to keep up with it, but when I was first setting it up it was a structured safe haven to sink some time into. I can't keep anything together usually, but I keep my inventory vaguely sorted.

My furniture and home stuff is a disaster-in-progress though. For some reason my patience and enjoyment doesn't extend to trying to label and move random dressers and chairs. Couldn't even explain why.

As for other zen-inducing SL activites I enjoy, parking my avatar in a nice location while I muddle around on an art program or read something seems to be calming. But only if the sim is empty. Because anxiety reasons.

Edited by cariboustag
Thought I had a post without typos. I was sadly mistaken.
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1 hour ago, Lewis Luminos said:

I have no problems sorting clothing, body parts and home/garden stuff.

It's everything else that I struggle with. Especially textures. A huge chunk of my inventory is textures.

 

I just put all of my textures and photos on a note card and drop my inventory down from however many items to just a few note cards.

If I ever need them I just send them to my inventory from the note card.

Just have to make sure the note card is full perm and drag and drop them textures and photos onto them.

Edited by Ceka Cianci
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14 hours ago, Anna Nova said:

One of the best investments I ever made in SL was to get an Inventory Manager (I use CTS Wardrobe with the optional Archive).  I have spent endless hours of fun making getting dressed as easy as possible using the provided tools.  It's utterly pointless in the end, but soothing, and like all great hobbies, a perfect waste of time.

I have the wardrobe, but haven't gotten around to trying to figure it out, I think it would stress me out even more if and when I try to get a handle on it. lol

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9 hours ago, Annie Nova said:

I have the wardrobe, but haven't gotten around to trying to figure it out, I think it would stress me out even more if and when I try to get a handle on it. lol

There are some great videos about it.  Starting: 

 

 

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you know, your get tricked by your mnd to perfectly organized your inventory.

THE FACT ia sl inventory system is sxck , not your fault. so

I tell you this,

dont  care about invenyory system its useless, eatup your time, . beside tons stuff in there will be outdated..

so deleted half of them , with closed eyes.. and enjoy your SL

 

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On 6/11/2022 at 9:36 PM, Persephone Emerald said:

I was feeling anxious and depressed earlier today. I went into SL as Alycia, picked up some hunt items, then started sorting her inventory a bit while standing in a quiet Premium sandbox. I had already turned off group messages from the stores I don't want to shop at right now, then closed the windows for other groups. Only one friend had IMed me, but he wasn't bothering me. I realized after an hour or two that I was no longer feeling anxious or depressed. I find organizing and getting rid of stuff to be relaxing, in SL even more than in RL because it's so mentally focused. I thought, I wish I could feel this kind of calm focus toward my RL problems and tasks.

I think there are 2 reasons why this calms me in SL. First because sorting inventory doesn't have the emotional baggage that RL worries and tasks have. There is no one to judge whether I did a good job or not. There is no serious consequence to whether I do it or not. It makes me feel better, but it's something I do only for my own peace of mind and personal sense of accomplishment. 

The 2nd reason why this is calming for me is that I use rational systems for how to sort stuff, so once I've decide on what rule I'm following, I don't have to think too much about what I should or shouldn't do. Following rules that I make up for myself, takes away the worrisome part of decision-making, the part where you keep rethinking the possible consequences of doing one thing or another. Clothing goes in the Clothing folder. If I haven't decided which sub-folder yet, then it goes into the "! Clothing & Accessories to Sort ! folder. I wish Real Life rules were this easy to figure out. 

I started this thread to share ideas for a positive view of inventory management, but if there are other things you do in SL that bring you a similar peaceful state of mind, please share those too. 

In RL I've also come to enjoy a job that others might find mind-numbingly boring. I have a BS in Biology and a 150 IQ, but at this point in my life I want a job that's easy, reliable, and low stress, rather than one that's highly challenging and competitive. I can Zen out on a packaging line and not feel bored, as long as I entertain my mind with positive or neutral thoughts.

 

I have found a different Zen with inventory management, and I believe there are multiple Zens. And I totally appreciate the Zen you indicate of what should seem like a boring sorting job of the type we did more of in the 1970s in RL. There is something soothing about putting things away and deleting packaging, and it gives one a feeling of accomplishment, although this is illusory because it doesn't matter; people dying in Ukraine matters. 

So I want to point to a different method I found, which is truly Zen. You don't sort inventory inworld, endlessly clicking on and trying to keep the second inventory open, and experiencing all the jumps and lags and frustrations that go with this inworld folder wrangling.

Instead, you sort your record of purchases online, which is clean, fast, non-laggy, and straightforward. So you put your Linden purchase page back 3 months and refresh, then methodically go down the days, finding purchases, whether on the MP or inworld, and then searching for that precise item in inventory and moving it. You can also opt to ignore it and let it sink to the bottom.

You will be amazed at the discovery of things you forgot you bought and which would never have been found again! Or things from hunts or free gifts. Some of this you can delete sight unseen; some you can come inworld and deal with. The great thing about this method is that you can be in a Zoom meeting and manage the purchase pages and the inworld inventory while remaining stationery in SL and not having to do too much hunting and clicking.

While it seems as if this might take much longer, in fact it doesn't; you find something and immediately put it away or delete it.

If there is a lot to deal with, and there is for me, you make a "Quick Sort" section at the top of the inventory that stays on top, like #AAAQuicksort -- then make 6 folders with general categories like "houses" or "furniture" or "art works" or "scripts" or whatever you need. Shovel everything into those 5-6 folders which remain on the top, so no scrolling is required. Then after awhile you work out of one of those quick sort folders, which is now easier as it has been pre-sorted.

 

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18 hours ago, kali Wylder said:

Great topic!  My inventory was a real disaster area for years and years.  I just didn't have time to keep up with it and so I had "to be sorted" folders scattered throughout my main folders.  Then at the beginning of the covid epidemic, my real life came unglued.  I had planned to retire in March of 2019 and move from California to New England.  All my plans went on hold and I kept working until July, then decided to take the plunge and go ahead despite the lockdown.  My desktop went into storage and I was homeless for a few months.  I went from logging in daily for hours to sporadically logging in once every couple of months.  My inventory just sat there in the unkempt state I'd left it in.

Then I got sick.  Real sick.  In the hospital and facing end stage renal disease.  No time for SL.  Life went on, my health became more stable.  No longer homeless.  My desktop didn't survive the trip and the months in a hot dusty storage facility but now I have my desk with my laptop and my big monitor hooked up and a space where I can log into SL again.  But I'd lost the habit.  I had retired from my SL job hosting and I just didn't know what to do with myself in SL.  The last thing I wanted was to look at my inventory mess.

Through out all the turmoil, I still would check into the forums.  You guys are my people, I like the way you think. And I happened to see the thread about inventory changes to come and it inspired me to log in and just see where things were.  Suddenly I had something to do in SL again.  Putting my inventory in order is strangely satisfying.  There's the fun of discovering cool things I had picked up and forgotten about. 

There's the pleasure in following simple guidelines.  If it's not clothing, it's stuff.  Stuff gets broken down further:

image.png.4c689219601a1f6df4f7de04c69e7f55.png

There's the exciting thrill of realizing I don't want something, that I'll never want it, that I can delete it. There's a place for things I don't want or know what to do with, but am not ready to delete, my WTF folder.

For the past few days, I've been playing in my Furnishings folder.  I had so much fun, it inspired me to play Game of Homes again.  I successfully managed to return my trad in Sweetmarsh and then turn around and get it back again under my alt.  Changed house styles and redecorated. Now I'm house hunting and picking up content creation packs for all the home styles I haven't lived in before.  

I've even done a little bit of shopping!  And my new stuff is already put away in the proper folders.  I still have more work to do with my accumulation of stuff to be sorted:

image.png.d1d00518c81e1350f3581f1b483e4983.png

2017 was quite a year for acquiring stuff, there's over a thousand items in that folder, and I've already put away hundreds of things. 2018 is another 2,000 plus items. 

Inventory management is like dirty dishes.  There's always going to be more to do.  But right now my sink is clean and it feels good.

 

I have "My Creations" too. It's funny how you follow the prompting of all these platforms that have "My" this and "My" that, although really it's "Theirs". And of course with SL inventory, "you can't take it with you". But I was really glad when I got at least the "My Creations" sorted, although it got so gigantic with so many sub-sub-sub categories that I started new folders like just "Eggs".

219,280 items

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I am on the fence about inventory management being Zen-like.

It's true that I can spend hours sinking my consciousness into the task. But it's all shot to heck when, after my latest shopping trip, and unpacking and sorting the plunder, my inventory size is larger than when I started.

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On 6/12/2022 at 12:18 PM, Ceka Cianci said:

 

I just put all of my textures and photos on a note card and drop my inventory down from however many items to just a few note cards.

If I ever need them I just send them to my inventory from the note card.

Just have to make sure the note card is full perm and drag and drop them textures and photos onto them.

I have to redo this because I messed up.. It won't let me edit that post for some reason so i'm gonna fix it in this one.

I meant the photos and the textures need to be full perm before dragging them to the notecard.

I just knocked down 2,458 items to 15 note cards putting my photos and textures on note cards.. The pain in the butt is setting all the permissions on the photos and textures..

That took a good while..

I know darn well they'll be set to full perms from here on out before I let them collect up like that again ..hehehehe

Edited by Ceka Cianci
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I used to be able to quote the definition of "Quality" from The Zen of Motorcycle Maintenance. (That definition something like, "Quality is a characteristic of thought and..", and ends something like, "..is a product of [rigid, formal] thinking, quality cannot be defined.")

Is there a parallel here? Maybe I missed a post.

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My personal Zen in SL is setting up and decorating my home parcel. I think sorting my inventory might do the opposite for me, since it seems like such a huge, chaotic task. I haven't taken proper care of it in over 11 years.

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On 6/11/2022 at 8:36 PM, Persephone Emerald said:

I was feeling anxious and depressed earlier today. I went into SL as Alycia, picked up some hunt items, then started sorting her inventory a bit while standing in a quiet Premium sandbox. I had already turned off group messages from the stores I don't want to shop at right now, then closed the windows for other groups. Only one friend had IMed me, but he wasn't bothering me. I realized after an hour or two that I was no longer feeling anxious or depressed. I find organizing and getting rid of stuff to be relaxing, in SL even more than in RL because it's so mentally focused. I thought, I wish I could feel this kind of calm focus toward my RL problems and tasks.

I think there are 2 reasons why this calms me in SL. First because sorting inventory doesn't have the emotional baggage that RL worries and tasks have. There is no one to judge whether I did a good job or not. There is no serious consequence to whether I do it or not. It makes me feel better, but it's something I do only for my own peace of mind and personal sense of accomplishment. 

The 2nd reason why this is calming for me is that I use rational systems for how to sort stuff, so once I've decide on what rule I'm following, I don't have to think too much about what I should or shouldn't do. Following rules that I make up for myself, takes away the worrisome part of decision-making, the part where you keep rethinking the possible consequences of doing one thing or another. Clothing goes in the Clothing folder. If I haven't decided which sub-folder yet, then it goes into the "! Clothing & Accessories to Sort ! folder. I wish Real Life rules were this easy to figure out. 

I started this thread to share ideas for a positive view of inventory management, but if there are other things you do in SL that bring you a similar peaceful state of mind, please share those too. 

In RL I've also come to enjoy a job that others might find mind-numbingly boring. I have a BS in Biology and a 150 IQ, but at this point in my life I want a job that's easy, reliable, and low stress, rather than one that's highly challenging and competitive. I can Zen out on a packaging line and not feel bored, as long as I entertain my mind with positive or neutral thoughts.

 

Organizing has always been such a zen thing for me. In RL I can be ok as long as my closets are organized and the pantry etc. I have to be able to see everything at once, like in the fridge or kitchens. I used to work in kitchens, they have a term, mise en place, everything in its place.

I've probably spent a good portion of my SL existence organizing my inventory. I thought just last night as I was inword playing with new and old friends I met how nice that I could go to inventory and just choose an outfit. Took lots of time to make that happen but that's life, right? Take the time to do it right now so when you need it in an instant, there!

Anyways, great post. I love your thinking.

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