Adulthood Lesson #1: Maintain a Personal Information Worksheet

5 Apr

To a child, every event, every move seems unforgettable.  And Teens can’t imagine every forgetting the name of that annoying boss at the deli who makes them work on Friday’s date night.  But eventually you grow up and life moves on, taking you with it.  

By the time you’ve gone to college, started a family, worked 5+ jobs, and have a home phone, family phone, cell phone, and skype phone, you’ll start realizing that keeping all that old information separate in your brain gets more and more difficult.  

However, eventually you’re probably going to find that  as you start looking for work, taking important tests, filing taxes, getting licenses, etc. that you will often need on hand a lot of that information from your past.  Some forms may ask you for the name and address of every company you’ve ever worked for (i.e. Certification Exams).  Maybe they need a list of all your home addresses for a background check (Law School).  Maybe you need to have on hand your ex-husband’s SSN# for a government form (i.e. if you’re audited).  

It’s a lot easier to keep track of all that information if you do it as you go along.  So for simplicity’s sake: 

Keep a Record Of All Your Important Work/Personal Info

Maintain an Excel or Word spreadsheet that has all of your important work, education, and personal information.  Keep it up to date; as soon as you marry add the date and county where it was registered into the form.  When you get divorced, go stick the date and presiding county name in your worksheet.  When you start a job add the date; when you quit, add that too.  A good list of things you might need to have on hand includes:

  • Your Personal Information
    • SSN#
    • Passport #
    • Home Addresses (for everywhere you’ve ever lived including dorms).
    • Dates of Residence
    • List of Information relating to any legal trouble you’ve had (including arrests, tickets, citations, etc.)
  • Family’s Personal Information
    • Spouse/Ex
      • Full Name
      • SSN#
      • Date of Birth
      • Date Married/Location of Certificate
      • Date Divorced / Location of Decree
    • Children
      • Full Name
      • SSN#
      • Date of Birth
    • Parents
      • Full Name
      • SSN#
      • Date of Birth
  • Educational Information
    • Name & Address of your High School/ Graduation month and year)
    • Name & Address of any Community Colleges or other such schools/ Dates of Attendance / Graduation Month & Year
    • Name & Address of any Undergraduate Colleges You attended / Dates of Attendance / Graduation Month & Year
    • Name & Address of any Graduate Colleges you Attended / Dates of Attendance / Graduation Month & Year
    • List information relating to any academic problems you’ve had (Probation/Expulsion/Discipline)
    • Important Test (ACT/SAT/GRE/GED) Scores / Dates Taken
  • Employment Information
    • Name of Employer
    • Name of Supervisor
    • Job Title
    • Description of Job Position
    • Address of Employer
    • Dates Employed
    • Name / Address / Contact Information for Potential Recommendations
  • Additional Information
    • Clubs, Organizations, etc. That You Are A Member Of / Dates of Membership
    • Honor’s Awarded 

I’ve drawn up a sample of the Word worksheet I use and uploaded it to Dropbox.  You can find it here.  

While it’s a good idea to have this saved in writing or on your computer, remember that it is all confidential information (and likely the answer to many security questions for online accounts) so don’t share it with other people.  Keep it in a very safe place!

Finally, A Toast To Making Life Easier!

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