I had a hidden agenda in becoming a Philofaxy blogger...hidden from even myself. Accountability. Like many people who've made a transition from digital to analog, from one career or workstyle or lifestyle to another, or taken on any kind of shift that involves a change in organizational system, I'm guilty of endless tinkering and tweaking. As soon as I get all my information, notes, projects, schedules, and plans into one system, said system's flaws become immediately apparent -- and unbearable. So I tinker. I buy more Moleskines, index cards, or Circa refills, thinking I've finally found the answer to it all.
I must confess, no sooner had I posted this entry announcing that I had finally transcribed everything into my newly acquired 'faxes, that the itch returned. Once my desire to have everything in one place, on one (OK, two) interchangeable paper sizes was satisfied, all of a sudden it was all wrong. Now that I could carry everything I needed with me all the time, all of a sudden I didn't need or want to. It was cumbersome, burdening. And the perfect configuration -- personal A5, work A5, Pocket as PDA -- was suddenly all wrong. How well was my system working if I was I leaving the house with three -- count 'em, three -- 'faxes in my bag every day?
Could I abandon this blog and start over? Those new 18-month 'skine diaries look pretty darn cool. Or what about the minimalist route -- index cards, plain letter-size paper, and manila folders? But no. Accountability. I've finally and fully accomplished a solution that I thought I wanted. Give it time. Figure out what's working and not working. Maybe all I need to change is what's not working. Behind the Notes tab, I started keeping Filofax notes. A few pages later, it became clear that I was overpopulated by one Filofax. So I made the adjustment and kept going.
Now I'm noticing something cool. Instead of recopying information, I'm adding to it. For example, behind my Ideas tab, I have a page labeled Blog Ideas, containing some notes on blogs I admire, things I'd like to put on my own blog page, hosting ideas, and today, when I found out about something called Pro Blogger (a blog about making money with a blog), I simply added it to the existing page. An idea that might have gotten lost without being written down at all, or ended up many pages away from related information, is now right where I'll see it when I use it. And I can see my ideas develop over time.
Because I have a running book list for more than a year, I can clearly see which ones are going to be worth reading (Warlord, by Ilario Pantano) and which were just a fleeting notion (The Healing Diet, by Gerald Lemole, M.D.). In other words, my Filofaxes are helping develop my thought processes. Or at least, they're not distracting from them. Now that I'm detaching from tinkering, there's more time for the thoughts themselves.
Now for what's not working: That Filofax storage binder. The post spine doesn't let me easily read my archived notes. Does anyone know where I can get an A5 ring binder in the States or at least in North America? Anyone in the U.K. willing to ship me a few fairly inexpensive ones? (I'll include a few pounds over so you can have a pint or two on me.)