19 February 2010

Free for All Friday No. 66

My TGIF spirit is a little tempered today by the fact that today marks the end of a vacation week for me. At least I still have a weekend ahead of me!

Some Filofax diary styles give weekend days less space than weekdays. That kind of arrangement is fine when the Filofax is used for business, but for my personal life I like all seven days to get equal space! I like my weekend days to feel just as full as all other days. Having less space to plan and record recreational, family, and church activities makes me feel stunted.

Do you use or ignore the weekend days in your diary? What's your favorite weekly arrangement?


  1. I agree Nan, while work days are filled with meetings and such my weekends are often taken up with just as many (or even more) errands and To-do's.

    I use a day per page format so I am graced with a full day's layout for each weekend day.

    Of course, sometimes they stay relatively blank (which means I spent the day relaxing) but I like to know I have the room for when my weekends are full!

  2. my weekend alternates between Fridays and Saturdays so often a saturday is a work day and I don't have the space for a lot of what happens then.

    Maybe not the same amount of space but a bit more would be nice.

  3. In my week-to-view A5 the weekend days have just as much space as a week day and there is a "notes" section at the top on the left hand side of the page. This works really well for me but I'm definitely in agreement about the more room needed statement.

  4. I'm at University so every day is equally filled with something - whilst in the week I'm more likely to fill the space with lectures and tutorials, at the weekend my days are filled with extra-curricular meetings and (if I'm lucky and worked hard!) some parties and relaxation. I'm using the week on two page layout at the moment, and have been since the start of 2010, with all days having equal space and a box above Monday where I record general reminders for that week, such as birthday present ideas etc.

    However, I'm finding that even this layout isn't really working. I have to-do lists in my filofax, and rely on these heavily, and so I have a 'Today' marker which indicates which page of To-Do's I'm currently on. This works okay, but I'm finding that I'm referring to them less than I need to and just jotting down to-do items on the day they occur. As you can imagine, an already packed week page soon gets filled when I'm doing this!

    So I'm considering getting rid of most of the To-Do sheets and getting page per day diary sheets instead - then I will write very-short term To-Dos (eg those that need doing immediately) on the day it needs doing, use a post-it note for a slightly longer term list (perhaps of things to be done in the upcoming week), and then keep separate To-Do lists for each long term project (such as holiday planning etc).

    Does anyone else have a similar set-up? How does it work? Obviously being a hard-up student I can't afford to be switching from system to system more than a few times!

  5. I have to have just as much space for my weekend days as week days, and I get really annoyed by weekly layouts that don't give weekends enough space.

    I would love to hear anyone's suggestions for Jess! When I was at university I tried a day per page diary/ planner for a little while but it quickly broke down when I couldn't see my assignments due later in the week or exams to prepare for. Unless you refer to a monthly calendar all the time to see upcoming due dates, I think it would be really difficult to use a day per page for uni.

    I had the same problems with my To-Do notes getting not enough attention behind tabs somewhere, yet not having enough space on my weekly page for those lists. I'm always curious about how other people keep their to-do lists visible without writing everything over each day.

  6. In complete agreement. While I don't have many appointments per day, they are generally equally spaced throughout the week.

    Having used nearly all the formats I have settled on 'Week per page' in English & I've added my own notes pages between weeks; (I would use the 'Week per page with notes' but the five languages take up too much space). I still have my medium to long term to-do lists, but everyday lists are on the notes pages.

    I've used this format for 18 months now & haven't been tempted to change yet.

  7. Simon that's a great idea. When I used the week + notes format I got annoyed by all the extra languages I used white-out to erase them! But that was pretty high-maintenance.

  8. As I've said before, I prefer the Week On One Page diary, although I'm not entirely displeased with the Week On One Page With Notes that I'm using in the interim, though it is twice the thickness in my Filofax.

    I run my life on what Paul Graham calls the "Maker's Schedule" rather than what he calls the "Manager's Schedule".

    You can read more about this at http://www.paulgraham.com/makersschedule.html

    As a result, I really have no need to track appointments on an hourly basis. I generally only have one or two appointments a day, if any at all. Since I really only need a thin slice of the page even for weekdays, the smaller amount of space allotted to weekends in other layouts isn't a problem for me. Actually my problem is having too much space allotted for weekdays.

    In any case, I think in the modern age, that most lives no longer fit neatly into five weekdays, so having less space for weekends doesn't make alot of sense to me.

    That said, I wish we could still get the Sunday-to-Sunday diaries that Filofax used to make. I hate having my calendars start on Monday.

  9. @ Laurie
    I started to copy your idea of using whiteout, but gave up after doing 5 pages! Then I hit on the using my own notes and haven't looked back :-)

  10. Jess - I am not in school and therefore don't have as many assignments to write down, but I do have a system for my to-dos.

    On the to-do sheets, behind my notes tab, I keep a list of long-term to-dos. When I have a need or the time to work on one of these items it will get moved to a specific day or week depending on which is applies to. Anything that needs to get done on a specific day gets placed in that day's section. If it's something that needs to be in my face but doesn't have a specific due date, I keep that on Day Timer's hot list sheets:


    These are great because they're narrow enough to allow you to see your week (I use week-on-two-pages) and have holes on both sides of the sheet so you can always have it visible. Yet, it's a constant reminder of what I need to get done. You can probably make your own if you have a Filofax punch or don't mind using a one-hole punch.

    To combat having to rewrite everything from day to day, I try not to give myself too many things to do in any given day - I try to be realistic about what I can accomplish in one day, so if there's something that needs to get done in a certain week but does not need to be done on a particular day, I try to schedule it for a light day. It's not a perfect system but seems to work for the most part. This of course depends on the kinds of things you need to get done - if you have a lot of assignments that have specific due dates or all need to get done in the same week, this might not be a good option.

    Another idea is to keep a to-do or blank note sheet in between your week but then there's a lot of flipping of pages to see what's coming ahead.

    I don't know if that helps you at all... Good luck!

  11. I use a week on two pages in my A5 that is equal space for each day, but it's only available in international format, or was when I ordered mine, so a little bit of wasted space.. In my personal I'm using a week per page, again same space per day.

    Future planning... every day will be the same to me soon... I hope!!!

    Oh guess what I found this evening A blog post on a gadget site that thinks that paper planners are cool...


  12. I have a question, please.
    Sort of a help question.
    Anyone that uses a "personal" filo, do you take the pages out of the filo to write on them, or do you write in your Filo no matter how bad the hand writing is?
    It seems I keep taking the pages out to write so I don't make a mess trying to write close to the binder rings. Also how can I order a new Filo and know what sizerings are in it? I see pictures of personals with larger rings but can't find a way to tell on the Filofax website.

  13. Laurie and kanalt - thanks for your responses! Laurie, I understand what you mean about having assignments due in - but the way my course works is that my essay submission days are the same every week, depending on the term. This term I have an essay due in at 4pm every Tuesday and one in at 6pm every Wednesday, for example, and I don't need to write these deadlines down every week.

    kanalt, I have seen these Day Planner things before and thought they looked really interesting - I think I'd be able to use them really well instead of a post-it note for my 'floating' to-do list, for things that maybe need doing soon but without a real deadline.

    I think I will probably move onto day per page simply because I'd like to be able to make notes etc on each day as well as recording appointments and meetings - I will definitely look into the Day Planner inserts too. I am turning into one of these people who constantly tweaks my system, though, and I want to settle on one that works for me and nip it in the bud before I become ever more obsessed! Hehe.

  14. Gregorym - I leave my pages in to write on them, unless I have the binder open for another reason or if I'm doing a lot of planning in one sitting. Sometimes my handwriting is not the best in keeping the pages in, but I find that it's more of a hassle to open the binder and remove the pages for every little thing that needs to be written down (many times it's just a quick jot of a reminder or something).

    As for the ring size - I don't know which country's site you use, but for the US site, when you click on the binder you're interested in, it will tell you the ring size in the description. So, for example, with the Classic, the description says that the ring size is 7/8 inches. I find that most personal size binders are that ring size. And if you're trying to decide between two ring sizes, I find that the pictures on the website are no help at all - you can hardly tell the difference.

    Hope that helps.

  15. Kanalt, those hot lists are EXACTLY what I've been looking for for months.... Do you (or does anyone else?) know if the Desk size would be compatible with my A5 Filo? I know there's an extra hole but do the other 6 line up with Filofax?

    Am waiting with bated breath and crossed fingers....it's exactly what I want....

  16. Francesca, I have no idea if the desk size will fit the A5. But you could try making them yourself if that doesn't work. Good luck!

  17. gregorym,
    or you can use the notepad to write new notes on and later transfer to any sections you wish. I do that when I'm in meetings

  18. I use the weekend pages for personal to do's and things not related to work, and if work over stretches then I add a to'do list in between the weekend pages and continue my notes there.


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