Electronic devices make our lives easier (and more entertaining) in so many ways… except for one: those annoying cords and cables. Whether they belong with toys or your personal and business electronics, the tangle of cords, cables, chargers and adapters is a part of your digital life. The challenge is figuring out how to control them instead of letting them fill up every spare drawer or looking like Medusa’s head hanging down behind your desk. Here are five solutions to put you back in “charge.”

  1. Cords and Cables Box. You know I love the simplest solutions and this one qualifies! For years in my home, I’ve kept two boxes dedicated specifically for cords and cables and they’re labeled (you guessed it!) CORDS AND CABLES. One box is for extra cords we sometimes need. This includes extension cords, extra cable TV connectors, power strips and the like. The second box is for cords and cables we use regularly, including camera chargers, USB cables for phones and iPod connectors. Instead of letting them live all over your home, give the entire cords and cables family one place to live and you’ll always know where to find one when you need it.
  2. Bongo Ties. These handy little babies are one of those products that when you see it, you think, “Why didn’t I think of that???” A sturdy rubber band tied to what is essentially a modified golf tee, Bongo Ties are an inexpensive, simple way to keep wrapped cords manageable.
  3. Velcro® Brand One-Wrap Straps. I like the One-Wraps, because unlike some hook-and-loop cable ties, these have hooks and loops along the entire length of the strap, so you know it’s strong and you can secure it anywhere as opposed to just at the end of the strap.
  4. Cable Zipper. This clever product is for controlling the impossibly ugly tangle of wires that hang off the back of your desk or behind your television and stereo components. Cable Zipper comes with a tool that allows you to literally “zip” a group of cables into one thick bundle without even unplugging anything!
  5. Q-Knot Reusable Cable Ties. Oooh I love these little toys and use them myself. The silicone material is easy on your fingers, they’re easy to use and they come in three sizes, with each size a different color. Unlike most other zip ties, Q-Knots are reusable. Typical zip ties are single use, requiring cutting to remove them. Once a Q-Knot Cable Tie is on, you can easily adjust it to add more cable, or remove it all together. No more cutting; you just pull the tie apart and reuse it!

What are your favorite ways to wrangle that tangle of cords in your life?

Monica Ricci is an Atlanta-based Certified Professional Organizer®, Productivity Expert, speaker & author who founded Catalyst Organizing in 1998.  A leader in her field, and winner of the NAPO Founders’ Award, Monica is passionate about teaching people to create simple, joyful, powerful lives.