Organized Everyday Carry

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Everyone’s got their take on EDC (Everyday Carry), from firefighters,  to stylish guys’ gear,  to moms on the move, to designers and photographers. I thought I’d add my two cents to the conversation with an EDC for organized people.

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What makes a Cult of Organization EDC different from all the others out there? Two things – how the items you include can help you stay organized, and how to organize the contents of the bag.

The bag itself is a MOUNTAINSMITH Network Messenger bag. It’s got a ton of different pockets and compartments, including a padded sleeve for a laptop, large central pocket, front pocket filled with little dividers, and mini pockets on both sides. This makes it a great bag for every day carry, since you can easily separate out items of different sizes and different uses. For example, items I access daily are in the two main pockets, while items I use less frequently are in the smaller front pocket.

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Photos from ems.com

You can take a look at a pretty comprehensive review of the bag itself here. Let’s dig in to the bag contents.

 

MUST HAVE MISCELLANEOUS

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  • Wallet: Contains cards, cash, ID, blank checks, one sheet of postage stamps, and personal business cards. Wallet zip pocket also contains lip balm, mini pen, and tiny Moleskine Volant notebook. Mini notebook is where I put my weekly grocery list, in addition to any notes that need jotted down while out and about.

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  • Planner: Includes monthly planner pages and blank pages for note taking in meetings. Along with planner, I also keep some pens (for emergency color coding, obviously).
  • Sunglasses
  • Keys, with nail clippers and gym membership in tow.

 

CLOTHES

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  • Headband, for winter wear.
  • Gloves, great for cold weather or car odds and ends, like checking the oil.
  • Spare socks, in case shoes/socks get wet from weather.
  • Small lightweight windbreaker: This zips into its own little pouch. Other clothing items can be stuffed into the jacket pouch to make a compact little pack within the EDC bag.

 

TECH STUFF

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  • Phone charger: Surprisingly handy. Cord detaches from 120V wall adapter, letting me plug into a computer for file transfer or the car USB adapter for charging on the go.
  • Laptop charger, accompanies laptop (not pictured).
  • Headphones, packaged with a binder clip to prevent tangling.
  • Flash drive, handy for small file transfer on the go.

 

FOOD

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  • Bars: Yup Brands protein bars are a personal favorite snack. Epic protein bars are great for carrying along, since they don’t melt or mush in the bag. Both of these bars are low sugar and make a great car snack – I’d definitely recommend to everyone, and especially people with a commute to and from work. I’ve avoided many a hanger-related road rage incident by having these in my EDC.
  • Water bottle: This bottle from Clearly Filtered can filter out chlorine, fluoride & more from tap water. It’s stainless steel, so you don’t have to worry about the junk that leeches out of plastic bottles. It’s fairly lightweight, too (though not as light as a plastic bottle).

 

TOOLS

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  • Mini Tape Measure: This might seem like an odd item to carry, but it’s by far the tool that I end up using the most in daily life! A cloth tape measure could do the same job, but I like this one since it coils up into its own case and takes up so little space.
  • Lighter: Great for lighting candles, melting the ends of cords/ribbons, and lighting impromptu fireworks. Those scenarios sound implausible? We must have pretty different lifestyles, then…
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New Year’s Eve, Cult of Org style
  • Multi-tool: Includes pliers, little scissors, screwdrivers and a few other useful attachments.
  • Headlamp: You could carry a flashlight instead, but this backpacking headlamp is extra bright and super convenient for nighttime hands-free car repairs.
  • Tweezers, Nail File: For personal grooming emergencies, including stray eyebrows and hangnails. Probably also useful in emergency situations, though I’m not sure exactly what.
  • Spare keys: I’ve found it unlikely that I will lock my keys AND my bag in the car all at the same time. Carrying a few spare keys has prevented several smashed car windows.
  • Quarters: For anything you need quarters for, from putting a little air in your tires to raiding the vending machine at work.
  • Odds and Ends: Sewing kit for fixing a tear or re-attaching a button, safety pins, duct tape, Band-Aids, etc.

 

COSMETICS

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  • Lip balm: Great for dry lips.
  • Lip balm (backup): Inspired by this WOWEE acronym.
  • Spare contacts: Awful to have to go all day blind in one (or both) eyes because you messed up your contacts. I wear daily lenses, so I always keep some spares in my bag.
  • Hand lotion, toothbrush, toothpaste, comb, eye drops, concealer, lipstick: Grooming emergencies, continued.
  • Bobby pins & hair clips: For hair emergencies.

 

Joking aside, these are all the items that take would-be emergencies (whether it’s car trouble on the way home, or running out of laptop battery power in the middle of an important meeting) and downgrade them to manageable situations. Organizing items by function as well as frequency of use means I always know where things are and rarely feel caught off guard in daily life – just another example of a system that can keep things running smoothly.

What do you keep in your EDC & why?

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