20 October 2009

Using Separate Filofaxes: Work vs. Personal

Michele had a question in her comment on my Where Did I Read This? post asking how people use separate Filofaxes for work vs personal use.

For those of you who do this, can you please give us details on how you decide what information goes into which Filofax, is there any/ very much overlap (information that goes into BOTH the work and personal use Filofaxes), and perhaps most importantly, do you use separate diaries/ planners for work and personal use? If you do, how to you manage both calendars and avoid scheduling conflicts (such as scheduling a doctor or dentist appointment at the same time as a work meeting, because your work Filo is at work and you only have your personal one with you)?

What are some difficulties you have discovered with having two operating Filofaxes, and how do you get around these? And also, how does having separate work vs personal Filos make things easier to manage?

Or, have you tried this method and found it just didn't work for you, you have to have everything in one book?


  1. I tried, but it was too much work to keep calendars and stuffs synced and not conflicting.

    Besides, my job isn't the kind you can switch off at precise hours or at specific days. I enjoy not having any "hard" schedule, but it means I don't have "hard free time" either ;-)

    Now, looking back in my archives, I like beeing able to see both personal and business events close together, it helps to see relations between things. This is really how I imagine a log book is used on a ship: everything that happens is in there ;-)

    The only thing I still have is a Personal Filo (soon to become a Slimline ;-)), in my backpack, with a copy of my calendar. But it is exactly the same as the A5, so no worry.

  2. I do use two separate calendars for work and personal, though the one for work is not a Filo. Most of my work stuff I keep on the computer - we use Google Apps for our email and calendar system, so this is where I keep my running list of things to do - whenever I'm doing things at work, I'm usually in front of the computer, while at home, I need something that does not rely on the computer. But I also need something that is portable at work for meetings and general reference.

    For work I use an At-a-Glance month-in-view for my calendar - I work for a non-profit so what my organization buys for us has to be low-cost. In here, I keep my work meetings and programs (which also go into my personal Filo, and any other work appointments that affect me directly) and other programs that I need to know about when I'm there but that don't affect me personally (these programs do not go into my personal Filo - I don't need to know about them when I'm not at work).

    The main challenge with this is keeping up with two separate calendars - I do have to double check a lot of things, but to me it's worth the extra effort. My Filo is my main calendar and my work calendar is a bare reflection of my Filo. All work items go in my work calendar, whereas ALL meetings and programs that I'm involved with go into my personal Filo. My job is one that does not come home with me, so other than the appointments and programs, I only need to know about things when I'm there.

    I also use my Google calendar (via my iPod Touch) for an on-the-go glance for those times when I do not carry my Filo (though these instances are rare). This I update on a weekly basis and again is only a reflection of any appointments listed in my Filo. I don't generally add anything to this calendar without first putting into the Filo - the Google calendar is just for reference only, so that eliminates cross-booking there.

  3. I tried this at one point too, but found it too much work to make sure I wasn't double-booking my time.

    Currently I use a two color ink system (since there are 2 pen holders...) using black ink for work items and blue ink for personal/home items. I do this both on my daily diary and on my to do list.

    Formerly, I used separate to do lists for work and home, but simplicity got the better of me there as well and I switched to the 2 ink system.

    Works very well and keeps the Filo uncluttered and more streamlined.

  4. My work overlaps a lot with my personal life so I put both in one.I have to synchronise my calendar with three at work (one central office schedule and two for conference room bookings. I also have to carry my A5 Filofax with me all day as I go from meeting to meeting and then do the shopping on the way home so more than one Filofax on the go at any one time would absolutely and totally do my head in.

  5. I've always been in love with the filofax. But it's only now that I've started using one on a daily basis. I've always felt I'm not using it right or to it's full potential, so to speak.

    Now I'm just using one personal size for work and personal items. I prefer the personal because I can carry it in my bag. I use it mostly for notes and info since appointment usually go in blackberry.

  6. I have to use the one Filo for both work and personal lives. I have highlighters to alert me to "important stuff", i.e. blue = work, pink = uni, orange = personal, yellow and/or green = family appointments, and then everything else is scribbled in.

    I have a specific order for my Filofax (you've given me an idea for a blog post) and if anything is in the wrong order, I panic!!

  7. Nickie, I know I speak for us all when I say we would LOVE for you to detail how you organize your Filofax! How do you keep it all straight?? What size Filo and diary format do you use? We would all love to know.

  8. HAHA!!

    Well, you asked!!


  9. Wow wow WOW!!!! Nickie, that is AWESOME!! Thank you for that!!

    I LOVE the photos that ZOOM out at me! I will take some time to study your post!!

    Thanks again!!

  10. Nicki, your filofax is absolutely amazing!!! Wow!!!!

  11. *blush*

    You people understand me... I am amongst my own here ;-)

    Thank you for the lovely comments :)

  12. Nickie you are definitely among friends here. As my sister says it, "Filofax: the OTHER crack!"

    Ha ha!

  13. I use a black personal bridle for appointments, meetings, tasks, notes, reference and adresses. Both office and private. All my peers use an iphone...

    My second filofax is a black personal savannah. I use it for hobby only. Amateur radio. It is always at home ob a shelf where children cannot reach it.

  14. Hi There
    So can I ask what your amateur callsign is? I'm G8SFR but soon to become F/G8SFR/P

    You might be interested in this template I've recently published:

    Steve G8SFR

  15. Ohh... about 7 years ago I had a brown personal bridle filo - it was gorgeous. I had JUST bought it when I found out I needed surgery. As I was nervous about bills I returned the filo to the store - I still think of it - it had 2 pen loops!

    My dad was into amateur radio all his life. We had his system set up in the room next to the garage. All the neighbors used to bang on our front door because the frequency of the radio was affecting the frequency of their baseball & football games on their televisions. He once chatted with the late King of Jordan,and we knew about results from Olympic games held across the other side of the world long before the internet. His call letters were
    W2MCP and he finally was able to get his call letters on the license plate of his car. Just before he past away from cancer in 2001 my mom wept as he signed off and retired his call letters. I don'y know what he did with his radio diary, but if I could find it maybe I'll transfer notes to my filo.

  16. This world gets smaller and smaller - I'm an amateur radio operator too!!! My call sign is M3NJO and my husband is 2E0MPO. We're both based in the UK.

  17. So my filo friends, guess what I did yesterday... In anticiation of my newest filo arriving next Friday night and wondering how I was going to manage 3 filos (black finsbury personal slimline, red finsubry personal, and now a pocket green panama) when I'm used to just one (ok, I do have a orange pocket dorset in archives that I always reach out for Christmas Card addresss)... I decided to do a noble deed. Down the road there is a popular 2nd hand charity store that does very good business w/ both donatations and buyers w/ limited $$. So to hopefully help someone and put a smile on a face as well as introduce the filofaxers' lifestyle... I took my Personal Red Fins and stuffed all the unused notepapers, dividers, etc. Since this filo erroneously was delivered w/ only a 2009 calendar, I took the 2010 cotton creme I bought at Harrods last August and put that in the red filo. As I still had the box it arrived in (via colleague at work I bought it from when she ordered the wrong size), I emptied my beloved slimline of its contents, and slipped the empty slim it into the box w/ the red personal. I then put these treasures into a plastic bag w/ some old stuffed toys and dropped it into the bin at the charity store.... So now my thoughts are of some young person opening the bag and just being amazed especially when they see the all brand new inserts inside....So for this week, I'm carrying the next week, plus my finance page, phone #'s in an empty filo plastic envelope. Next Friday night when my boyfriend comes home from UK w/ my new filo, I will happily be spending the weekend bonding w/ my new pocket filo. Please my filo friends keep me in your thoughts this week as I manage 5 days without any beloved book, sidekick, best friend at my side! ;-(

  18. Michelle
    That was a very kind thing to do. I hope who ever gets both organisers enjoys using them. I hope you don't have second thoughts this week!!

    I wonder if you thought to pop a card in to each organiser with the address of Philofaxy on it? I'm sure we would welcome a new reader in to the fold....


  19. Michele - that was a lovely thing to do and no doubt your lonely 5 days will set you in good stead to use just the one Filo when it arrives :)

  20. You go Michele! I imagine it feels really good to release the Filos you're done with to good homes and start afresh!

    In order to coordinate my 4 Filos (work, personal, household, and fitness), I create a master daily to do list in the Personal book, containing all routines, phone calls, errands, and major work tasks for the day. It means rewriting some items, but at present it's the only way I can keep everything at my fingertips.

  21. :-) My comment caused quite some comments on amateur radio. My callsign is HB3YXC.

    Recently I bought an old Yamaha XT600 Motorbike. To drive from home to office and back, summer and winter. Maybe I am going to use this amateur radio filofax for the motorbike as well. There is plenty of information to keep.


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