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24 October 2008

Free for all Friday, No. 17

First of all, thanks everybody for your great comments last week.

Good to see some of you coming back to commenting after a while away. I want to answer some of your questions, but have not yet done so.

When you comment, Blogger gives you a chance to sign up for email notification of anyone commenting on a post after you. Take advantage of it—it doesn't endanger your email address, and it ensures you don't miss out on the full discussion.

—Inky

33 comments:

  1. I am a new poster.. but read this site regularly. I am from the UK (live in London) and came across this website because of my obsession with my filofax... I don't even use mine for work - just for me and I literally cannot live without it.

    Anyway, I just wanted to say that I have decided to make a filofax-based New Year's Resolution come January... it's going to be to try to make an effort to be more neat in my filofax, cos my diary pages are a mess of colours, crossings out etc etc etc.

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  2. I totally agree with you, I need to neaten up my handwriting and the layout of my daily spaces. Things are getting lost in the mess, and I'm starting to not notice things I've written in because of the jumble of what's written into each daily space. I am constantly trying to tweak my diary pages (using week + notes) to make things more visible and organized. My latest trick is to draw a line down the middle of my schedule page to separate each day into morning (left side) and afternoon/evening (right side). I was writing things in this general pattern anyway, but sometimes things lopped over onto the other side a little, adding to the confusion. Hopefully this method will keep things tidier and in better view!

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  3. Hello everyone. I'm Joffrey and I have a Filofax obsession :-)

    I would like to share some of my views on being organised:
    - Don't worry about being "disorganised". As long as you can make sense of your own system then that's good. Everyone processes information differently.
    - Being too organised is a bad thing.
    - Your system, like your life, will constantly evolve. A little disorganisation is ok and is normal.

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  4. I find that I am constantly 'sorting' my filofax. I have just brought a new one, and I have decided that I wanted to emlininate the tabs I had at the top of my pages. I still need them, to define sections within sections, like in my list section I have four sections - movies to get, authors, books and wish list. I am going to add a music/song list and web list to this section, but Iam going to cut the pages themselves like what you get when you buy an a-z book, except I am going to put them across the top of the page. I think this will go a long way to making my filo sections neater.

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  5. I think I am going to move from the page a day calendar to the week on two pages calendar. I was worried about having enough room for to-do lists, but I am going to keep my todos on a ruled piece of paper and just move it from week to week. Rather than rewriting the todos I don't get done from day to day.

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  6. I would really like to hear how this works for you. I am constantly battling with the issue of not enough space per day, but also needing to see more of a broad view than a page per day allows. I have moved up to an A5 size and have tried various formats of week to view in an effort to balance the need to write lists and appointments, but still be able to see what is coming up later in the week.

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  7. I'm constantly battling with the same things Laurie is—do strikeouts make me feel disorganized? Can I keep an overview without seeing it in my Filo each day?

    But I think Joffrey is on to something: "A little disorganization is OK and normal."

    I just hate getting caught short when someone asks me a question or I don't get something done.

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  8. Annonymous how do you use your filofax such that you can't live without it? What do you keep in it? does it go everywhere with you?

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  9. I'm back to a filofax after a summer afair with clairefontaine notebooks. I thought they'd look a little less stuffy than my filofax but really, they just don't work for me. I need to be able to separate things into sections and remove pages that I no longer need. I just spent the day getting everything back into my filofax and I'm feeling much more sane and together. Still need to make some dividers and add some personal touches. It's nice an neat now but I'm looking foward to it developing that nice well-used, slightly messy look and feel about it.

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  10. My Filofax is a mess too, but i like it this way. it's like me, in my head it's messy too;-)

    But i still need to reorganise my tabs and add lined and plaine white paper.

    For a good overview in the diary section I use a red pen for appointments and blue for everything else. I also have a post-it sticking on the current week with things i want to buy, but will have to wait.

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  11. I have a new leather filo and I am wondering if anyone has advice on how I can protect the leather. It is quite soft leather and lovely to touch. Over time I think it will absorb oils and such from being handled and used, which I think will add character to it. I have a leather conditioner that is a cleaner conditioner and waterproofer in one wipe on buff off cream. Can anyone advise me on this?

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  12. Silver_elixir - My filofax goes literally everywhere with me... to the shops, to work, to friends houses everywhere!! I've come to realise that I simply cannot remember anything unless it's written down in my filofax! My boyfriend also now relys on it as well before arranging anything!!

    I've got lots in mine...it's a green Finchley (personal size), and in it is:
    card section at the front with stamps, vouchers/tokens, loyalty cards, the local gym's exercise class timetable, a weight-loss chart(!), some old payslips. then i have a business card section with anything and everything that I pick up from restaurants, shops, people etc, then a tube map and central London map (INVALUABLE!!), then the info pages from filofax, then my messy diary (I sellotape or staple in tickets and invitations and stuff in here as well... and there is no colour scheme really - just whatever pen i've got to hand - although i want to change this to having one colour for work, one for appointments, one for personal, so it's easier to tell what i'm doing each day), oh and i also note down how much weight i've lost or put on each week (currently on a massive diet!)
    Then I have my 'projects' section which has timetables for work, a work to-do list, a personal to do list, an ongoing list of books brought and read,same with CDs, a wish list of stuff to do or get, reading lists for my counselling course, lists and addresses of lovely bars, pubs and restaurants i've been to and want to remember.
    then my notes section which has: recipes, newspaper cuttings, general scribblings and doodles, the rules of poker from when i once played with someone, lists, directions, packing lists for festivals, camping and holidays, a list of my load repayments, things that a fortune teller once told me, eating/food lists, general info, committee meeting notes.
    then my address book where no one ever gets deleted,
    then an info section with important codes, passwords, local hospitals, council, numbers, websites, emergency numbers
    then a birthdays and anniversarys list, and finally, a compact mirror and USB in the back zip!!!

    THAT is why I cannot live without it!!!

    sorry for waffling on...

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  13. Laurie: I won't know how using a page of ruled paper for my todos in the middle of a week-view diary will go until next year (if I go this route, I haven't bought the 2009 diary yet) but will let you know.

    I keep thinking, which is better, to have the week view but not enough room for todos, or the day view, with plenty of room for todos but you have to flip around a lot more.

    Filofax might think of offering a compromise layout, like Planner Pads.

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  14. I don't know how people manage WITHOUT a Filofax (or similar binder-organizer). Okay, I can see having an address book, and your daily planner in a different book. But what about lists? Financial info? Other reference? Where do people keep information like airline miles numbers, medical reference, insurance policy info, etc? I guess many people have a filing cabinet at home where they keep this stuff. I am on the move so much that I have to have these things with me along with maps, addresses and numbers of pretty much everyone I know, and basically my entire life, in my Filo! I have attempted to function without it and it always results in disaster.

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  15. Anonymous (the one in the 4th anonymous comment): Thanks for your detailed comment! I can just picture your beautiful, well-used Filo from your description. I keep my retail, club, and other cards in a little card case (from Levenger). I keep my driver's license, insurance, bank, and major credit cards in my Filo itself. If I had larger rings, I'd keep all cards in the Filo.

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  16. Thanks annoymous for all the detail about how you use your filo. Mine is progressing to being a like yours, although I am currently streamlining it and updating all my old lists and info. I am hoping I will be able to use it as a way of making some necessary life changes in the coming year - things like money management and health improvement and getting projects off the ground by actually allocating time to do them!! thanks for the insight and inspiration!!!

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  17. In regards to the week on 2 pages - this is what I use mostly. There are days when I wish there was more room for to-dos as well as appointments. I do use the lined version, which helps me to keep most of it organized. On the days when I have too much to write in the small space provided, I will then use a daily page and stick it in the middle of the week. It also helps to reorganize events and tasks - if a space gets too cluttered with things, I can then reorganize it on a daily page and I feel much better about it - it's not so cluttered, yet I can still see my week at a glance. I like the idea of the daily pages, with actual time slots for appointments, but I have to agree that it doesn't allow me the long-range view that I need - for the most part, I do weekly planning and the daily pages make that very difficult.

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  18. kanalt, I have the exact same problems with needing the space and details of daily pages but the overview that the weekly pages provide. I moved up to the A5 size this year hoping it would solve this problem, but I am still battling with this issue. I have tried a couple of different formats and still don't feel like I have the perfect solution. I tried the week as columns, which was great when I had a lot of appointments but it left me no space for my weekly lists. Now I have the week + notes and am having the opposite problem: an entire page for lists, which is great, but not enough space each day! I'm considering getting the horizontal week format for 2009, because there is a space at the top of the left page for notes and more space per day than the week on one page gives. Does anyone use the horizontal week view format in the A5, and if so how is it working for you?

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  19. I just realized that I actually have this format for the rest of 2008! My new A5 came loaded with the horizontal format for July-Dec 2008, and the vertical column format for 2009. So I can try out the horizontal format immediately, and if it works for me I'll get it for 2009. Yay!

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  20. I am not overly busy so I use the week to a view with one page of notes. This allows me to note down any appointments and then I tend to fill in things retrospectively. I have an idea for those of you that are having touble with the weekly overview but not enough room for notes or other info. I thought of using a bigger post it note to record any 'extra' info or whatever is needed. For example at the start of the week it could be stuck on the TH to SU pag, either ovr the days or to the edge of the page and folder over so that any info is still visible. It could then be moved to the MON to WED later in the week. It could be placed to the edge of the page to allow other info seen, or it could be used as a task list that does not need to be kept. I hope this idea makes sense! If not I could take some pics to demonstrate the idea.

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  21. Hi, all. I use the vertical week/columns format, but I ignore the times that are printed on each day. I use mine along the lines of Planner Pads (mentioned by anonymous). Each week I divide off 3 sections by drawing 2 horizontal line across the Mon-Fri columns, leaving me with upper, middle and bottom sections.
    - I don't have many appointments so I use the top/upper section for timed events and appointments,
    - the middle section for things that have hard deadlines or require follow up that day, and
    - the bottom section is flexible for various lists of realted items or tasks.

    I don't work on Saturdays and Sunday so I leave those 2 days as is, plus they don't have printed time slots so they are perfect as is. :)

    For things relevant to the week but not pinned to a particular day, I adhere a large sticky note (like silver elixir says) which is 4"x6" with lines. I use a sharpie to write WEEK OF 10/27-11/2 across the top of the sticky note. That sticky note just gets placed on the page that isn't covering up today's column. This alleviates my "not enough room for my lists" feeling.

    So, at the start of each week when I draw the lines and set up my new "this week's" sticky note, it gives me the time to plan for my week, and really see what's coming up.

    I heart my Filofax and this site!

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  22. Hi Laurie,

    I have the one week on two pages the horizontal one too. I really like it. It has enough space for all my things.

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  23. I use a layout similar to the Filofax week with notes, A5 size. This gives me more than enough room for telephone calls and other notes that come up, although it wouldn't be enough if I listed tasks on that note page.

    Then, since I have certain recurring tasks that are very important for my business, I have those on a monthly checklist. And I have extra lines on that to write in the miscellaneous tasks that come up during the month.

    This keeps tasks completely separate from appointments, but I keep my task list in my planner as a bookmark for the weekly pages. During the month it gets moved to the next week and tasks are crossed off and dated as the month goes by.

    This gives me a record of when I did something and I also can update my printable task lists so that if those miscellaneous tasks will need to be done again, they will be on the printed list the next time. For example, I'm adding "Get a Flu Shot" to my October list so it will be there next year.

    It's taken me five years to work out a good way to keep up with all this and try different layouts and ways of organizing tasks and appointments. It's great that Philofaxy has these discussions so we can see how others manage and what alternatives there are out there. There are so many tradeoffs and considerations, and I want to make my life as simple as possible and not have to think about these things so much! On the other hand, it's also great fun!

    Thanks so much to everyone and to Inky.

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  24. Laurie -- I've switched to the horizontal week in my A5s. I'm all horizontal, all the time now. There's so much room to write! I put appointments and other announcements down the left side of each day, and to-dos down the right side. It's cool that you got 1/2 year's worth to try!

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  25. Muse924: I love your solution. Thanks to all for the great ideas.

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  26. I had a brain wave last night that a sticky note could be stuck to the page finder ruler to use for extra writing space. Or a piece of paper could be stuck to the top of the current day/week pages and flipped up with notes on either side... Just some ideas...

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  27. Inky I like your idea of appointments on the left and tasks on the right. Even though it's only been a couple of days, I am feeling very comfortable with the Horizontal format. Part of the comfort factor might be because this is the same format I used when I used my Personal size Filo. I moved up to A5 because I wanted more writing space and also specifically because I wanted the week with days as vertical columns. But then when I finally used that format I didn't like it because it seemed to "businesslike." The Horizontal unlined spaces seem friendlier. Ironic that I ditched this format for the vertical, didn't like it, and have now come back around full circle! Although I do have to say, the A5 size makes all the difference. I agree, there is so much more space to write, it's really nice. I'll be ordering the Horizontal week view for 2009. So now for 2009 I will have: Vertical (which came loaded in my new Filo), Week + Notes (which I have been using for the last few weeks without much success) and Horizontal! I guess whenever the mood strikes me to change my format, I'll be set for the entire year with whatever format I want!

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  28. I wonder if someone (Laurie, Inky) who is using the horizontal format in A5 could tell us how big each day's section is? I had not thought of using this format but it might fit my needs better.

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  29. I measured the day spaces with my handy-dandy page marker/ruler. Each day space is about 14 cm wide (horizontal) and almost 5 cm tall (vertical). The "This Week" space at the top of the left page is the same size. Every day, including Saturday and Sunday, are the same size too. So the pages are symmetrical with four spaces per page: This Week at the top left with Monday-Wednesday below on the left page, and Thursday-Sunday on the right page. Hope this helps!

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  30. Laurie, Can you please post a pic of your diary page on flickr? Would love to see it...

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  31. Here is an image of the Horizontal Week on 2 pages diary page layout:

    http://www.filofaxusa.com/images/products/refills/line/68516x.jpg

    I'll spare you all my boring diary entries like "call maintenance man" and "peel grapes to make 'eyeballs' for haunted house!"

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  32. thanks Laurie, very helpful. I think I'm going to try that format for next year.

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  33. Well, I'm not putting any eyeballs in a jar this year, but my Filofax did help remind me to buy Halloween candy in advance this year!

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