25 September 2013

Combine Work and Personal Organisers?

Do you use separate organisers for your personal life and your work life? Or do you combine them in to one organiser?

How do you keep the information if you combine them in one organiser?

Share your tips in the comments below.

29 comments:

  1. For years I used to be a two- binder person. These days I have one planner. I have week on two pages and there goes everything "business-like", if I make notes they usually are on post´its and will be removed when they no longer are used. This weekly is opened at meetings and needs to remain looking very professional. There also is the timetable for my worker (I employ one person) and I make sure to make notes when to deal with her taxes, salary etc.
    Then there is a day per page in which I write my daily to- dos, reminders, whatnots, mealplans, cleaning schedule. On the opposite page there is a Chronodex in which I update everything. It is just visually so much more clear to see everything happening, especially when there are days when several things take place with people everywhere. My son, myself& meetings, my employee. So basically it is two pages per day, including Chronodex and that is the place to throw ideas and collect notes and plan.
    It works like magic!

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  2. I always struggled a bit to keep my work and home life in one personal sized binder - but just about managed when my job did not require much notetaking or many deadlines.
    I recently went back to the career I had before kids, and although I work part time and from home, there's no WAY I can keep all the information I need in one small diary. I could if it were A4 - but I can't carry around an a4 on non work days! My workloads varies wildly week to week, so I do have to keep track of whne work will impact more on my personal life.

    I keep an a5 week to view as my personal / home / family / life diary. I use an A4 month to view to track work deadlines. WHen I have work deadlines which will mean a heavy week for work, I highlight along the side of my personal a5 diary, so I know not to volunteer for anything or arrange much socialising that week. I use frixion highlighters which work really well.

    I keep my personal a5 in my bag, and my work a4 on my desk - the work a4 is smart and professional, so I can take it to meetings etc. I use a Staples Arc for both these planners, which means I can just swap pages or task lists from one to the other. I keep a running work task list in my A5, so if something occurs to me or a get a work phone call when I'm not actually working, I jot it down there and then transfer it when I'm next at my desk.

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    1. What filofax are you using, and when you say you use a Staples Arc, can you fit it in the filofax? How big is it? How do you tuck it in? Thanks for your tips!

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    2. No Filofax right now - after 10 YEARS of being a very happy filo user I recently swapped to the arc system as an experiment and am loving it so far. I just could not carry my lovely a5 finchley on a daily basis, and my personals were getting too cramped for tracking the plans of a family of 5 + a part-time job in academia.

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    3. Thank you for the info. I just went from a personal Osterley to an A5 Arc for my planner and I love it. Great idea to use the A4 for work. :)

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  3. I used to keep everything together in one planner. But that got to be too much. I moved all of my work tasks online to Wunderlist. I have a ton of repeating tasks that we're just too much to rewrite everyday. This has worked well. All of my appointments -- whether work or personal -- go into my planner. So everything except my work tasks are written in my daily planner.

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  4. I have EIOB! (Everything In One Book) And I love it! No more worries about taking the right planner anywhere. With my EIOB, it's always the right planner, and it goes everywhere with me, because it's also my journal, capture pages, and wallet. Of course I need ginormous rings for that, so I'm thankful I found such rings (1.75 inches to be exact) in Franklin Covey.

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  5. Maryanne, do you sometimes find it harder to 'switch off' when you are not at work, if you have work tasks etc in your home planner?

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    1. Hi! I don't find it hard at all. When not at work, I simply don't look at the sections related to work. I write in my journal, I doodle some designs on my Etsy section, I draft posts on my blog section, or when I'm reading on my Kindle, I write down ideas on my capture pages.

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  6. Jealous that Maryanne's Franklin Covey has 1.75" rings--I thought I was doing great because mine had 1.5!

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    1. Don't we just love giant rings? Hahaha!

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  7. I use two planners - an A5 for work and a personal size for the rest. There is some overlap of information - but I make sure to have all work info in the A5. I like having the two separate - otherwise I'd be thinking about work when I'm not working and vice versa!

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    1. yup, I agree laurie. There's also some work info I just don't need when I'm living the rest of my life!

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  8. All in one book here. I've tried maintaining bifurcated systems a couple of times but it always becomes massively frustrating. It also adds an element of worry to my planning because I never am fully confident that every single appointment and deadline was copied into both, potentially leading to double booking or a missed deadline. I like to open my ONE planner early in the morning and see the whole day in its entirety. I see that folks are concerned about having work on their minds when not at work, but I actually find the opposite to be the case; if a work item comes to mind I just write it into my planner (which is typically in arm's reach almost always) and then trust that I will take care of it when I'm back at work. I used to think of a work item when not at work and then worry about it and worry about potentially forgetting about it. Much worse! I scan over my task lists and only work on personal tasks when away from work and only on work tasks when at work. I also find that many things have some element of intermingling; run an errand on my lunch break or make a call to schedule a plumbing repair or a haircut during the work day. When I had two planners items like these were a huge problem as they would be written into my personal planner and if I didn't look at it during the work day I'd forget all about them. I honestly have trouble wrapping my head around how people can use two or more planners as a regular thing!

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    1. I get round the problem of remembering work stuff when using my personal planner by having a 'work' task list which I then move to my work planner when next at my desk.

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  9. I keep an A5 for work and Personal for personal. My job requires a lot of documented conversations so I like the space offered by the A5. The Personal size is more portable and fits in a bag better (and is lighter) than an A5. I also keep a separate Personal size planner for animal records (dogs, horses, goats, cats and chickens!) that generally lives in the tack room in my barn.

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  10. I work for the government and use their cheap green fabric record book as my work planner. It is letter size and I use Meetings, To Do List and Notes written in each day. It stays at work. For my personal planner I have a personal Malden, Kensington, Finsbury and Osterley that I use. If Josh keeps flashing his red Winchester on videos, I MAY have to get one of those too! :)

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  11. I have an A5 at work that stays at work and a personal for everything else. After reaching near-meltdown a few years ago, I really need to keep work and home separate. If I suddenly think of something I need to remember for work when I'm at home, I either write it on a sticky and paste that in my personal (my personal is always with me; only my work binder is fixed!) or I email myself at my work email. I have tried to combine into one binder, but now that I have very set days (and end-times to the day) I'm a) happier and b) find it easy to work from two binders.

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  12. has a planner for home (massive Franklin Covey classic size brick) and one for work (compact size FC Day One), but this is mostly an excuse to have an extra planner--could probably get along with one. Not to mention the Filofax Mini I'm using as a wallet.

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  13. I combine both in one and simply use a colour coding system that separates work tasks from personal tasks :) It is much easier than having to faff about with two different planners/books.

    I have a more detailed post about this on my blog if anybody is interested in reading more: http://everything-ib.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/my-new-colour-coding-system.html

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  14. One life, one planner. That is to say, I only have one Filofax in active use and all my to-dos and such live in that one. I also have one calendar, but due to the (snarl!) limitations imposed on me by my employer, that lives in work Outlook which is peppered with many private appointment details. I also make heavy use of Outlook categories with colour coding to identify what's work and what isn't. Trying to operate two calendaring systems in parallel is a recipe for disaster in my book. The closest I get is to print out my weekly calendar on A5 (usually at the end of the week rather than the beginning) and punch/insert it into my Filofax. Manually syncing a paper system with an electronic one is not my idea of a good way to spend my time!

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  15. Well I don't really have any 'work' things that I need to organise, but I do use one organiser for my personal stuff and university stuff. I just have my regular diary/notes at the front, and a university calendar/notes at the back!

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  16. When I was working full-time, I had a planner for my personal life and a spiral notebook and Outlook for work. I worked as a legal assistant in a law office so I could not combine the two. The work information was confidential and not appropriate to have in my personal planner. So I really didn't have a choice.

    I'm no longer working outside the home but do write daily for my blog and do my husband's bookkeeping (self-employed one person business). All that goes in one planner. I can't function with two. With working at the law office it was easy to have two, especially since I never brought work home with me. My work and home were completely separate.

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  17. Also, There's no way I could have used any size planner for my work at the law office. I had SO much to keep track of that no planner was large enough. I kept everything on the computer except information from meetings, phone calls and conversations. I carried a spiral notebook around with me everywhere and wrote things down as people told me (they told me anywhere and everywhere!). I transferred information from the spiral notebook to the computer. The computer allowed me to keep track of massive amounts of information and do a variety of sorts.

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  18. I'm firmly in the 'One life, one planner' camp here. GTD doesn't really distinguish between work and non-work projects and tasks (although I sometimes keep two lists within the same section of my Filofax), so I'm able to track both work and non-work projects and tasks within one Personal size Filo

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  19. Great comments and thanks so much for posting this Steve! I am totally a one planner girl but like SF I work for the government and am unable to keep confidential information in my personal planner. I use the spiral bound "government issue" planner now for work stuff that I leave at work and since I don't have a lot of appointments, I can keep just a section that is highlighted with certain days/times I need to know in my personal without having any confidential information in there. So, now when I'm doing a personal you tube or something about my planner, I don't have to worry about confidential information showing up in there. I'd love to have them both in one, but practically it just doesn't work.

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  20. It probably won't be a surprise that I'm in the one planner camp aswell. I'm self employed, my office is in my home and personal and work time and tasks seem to interleaf anyhow. I have all of it in a personal sized planner and it really works out great! I do Need a Two pages per day format....!

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  21. I'm in the multiple Filofax camp. I have an A4 on my desk at my regular 9-3 job, I have an A5 open in the kitchen as my home and colour coded family diary and I carry round a mini as a 'just in case' backup version.

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  22. I don't use a Filofax for my daily planner. I have a pocket moleskine for that and it rides quite well in my purse. I am self-employed and work from home, so I don't have many appointments to keep.

    I do keep separate Filofax binders for different tasks that I track. They all stay home on my desk. I have a Crimson Personal Malden to track my writing blog, work flow, and a new section to track stories I'm submitting. Another is a Pocket Apex that tracks my medical information. A new Filofax will be an A5 that I intend to turn into a jeweler's journal, a place to keep my personal jewelry design recipes. I want to draw the designs with watercolor pencils and handwrite the recipes. I keep them online in Evernote at present, but I'm finding that it doesn't work well in my studio when I'm making things.

    I like keeping all my various "hats" in a dedicated space. None of the information is duplicated in the binders, so it seems to work for me.

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