10 April 2014

Separate Work and Personal Life Organisers?

Do you use separate organisers for your personal life and your work life?

How do you decide what information is cross referenced between both organisers?

I know some of you combine everything in to one organiser, but I wonder if sometimes that might create issues with organiser overload, there's also keeping your own 'life balance' too?

If you have a separate work organiser do you leave it at your office? Or does it travel back and forth? 

Do you use the same size or different sizes? The same size would make it easier to swap pages between organisers of course.

Please share your tips in the comments below.


  1. I have one Filofax for my work (red Finsbury Personal) and one for my personal life. The second one is in style of bullet journal (normal notebook). I tried to have both in Personal Finsbury but it did not work. It was too much pages in Filofax. And I did not want to see my work in the evening.In Filofax I have all things work relating and only main information about my children and phone numbers. My diary, list to-do, mind maps for my private life is in my notebook.

  2. I am just about to start a new job and was considering getting a separate Filofax for work, as I agree, I don't want to see my work in the evening!
    I'd intend to leave my work Filofax at work and take my personal with me. I'm considering an A5 for work, as I think it would be better suited, more writing space for notes and easier to slot in papers from meetings etc.
    Being quite new to the Filofax world I'd be interested to hear any tips from people who already have this set up and how to make it work.

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  4. Having made the hugest life time error of double booking once and having a red face over it all, work and home now always go in the one diary. Easier, as no cross referencing. xx

  5. I have a filofax I use only for work and I leave it there. I work in admin, sometimes at the reception desk, so an A5 would be too big. I have contacts at the front instead of back as I use that the most. Next section lists printer setups, paths on shared server to various documents, some office protocols. Diary has year planner then Day Planner sandwiched between Wo2P diary. On the day planner I list meetings going on in the building that day, my to-do & don't forget lists.Then I have a notes section for anything miscellaneous, snippets of useful information, notes from admin meetings. The only things cross-referenced with my home planner are dates for annual leave, doctor & dentist appointments.

  6. I have a rule only to use one diary, which I happen to keep in a Pocket Finsbury,it goes everywhere with me and just has diary, plain paper and address book (the address book is less used these days with the advent of the smart phone, but still occasionally useful and I just like to have hard copies at hand). The if I'm out for work, I take my A5 Fusion. I keep an old Personal size for home stuff, mind maps, etc - anything not work or needed everyday - that one stays at home.

  7. All the relevant information in one place! However, most of work related items are in my outlook agenda. Meetings and visits I'm planning in my A5 malden Filofax. When I have some appointments to make for my personell life I need work- related meetings to be in there to avoid dubble appointments.This works for me just fine. During meetings I use the notebook at the back of my Filo. After the meeting I will file the notes in the right work binder.

  8. I use a cheap free 8 X 11 record book and Bullet Journaling for work and it stays at work. I use my Filo for everything else, and also note work meeting times or teleconferences on my Filo daily pages. Nothing else from work. My Filo goes EVERYWHERE with me.

  9. I have a main planner for a little bit of everything and use others for projects if and when I need to. I try to keep everything centralised but there are times when things require their own space.

  10. My system continues to evolve this year. At the moment, I’m using two (really 3) separate planners, plus electronic calendar/diary. There is no separation between work and home for me even at the best of times, and right now is not the best of times.

    A5 Filofax Ascot:
    Day per Page - work AND personal – this week only.
    But all the other pages are work only:
    Notes pages
    Reference lists
    Reference calendars – work – department, division and corporate

    Bound planner – At-A-Glance:
    Monthly and weekly future planning – work and personal tasks and deadlines that are not THIS WEEK
    (this would probably live in the Ascot, but I can’t find the appropriate inserts in the US right now, and I kind of like that I can view it at the same time as the daily page while I’m inserting info)

    Personal Kate Spade Debra:
    Day-Timer Tabbed Month on 2 Pages for bill due dates

    I carry the Ascot and At-A-Glance in my work bag. The Personal lives in my handbag and goes everywhere, with my phone.

    1. Bree -

      Where can I get a Kate Spade leather planner? I have seen pictures of one in black, red and even pink but so far have not seen one for sale. Are they still available?


      jacki whitford

  11. How very timely. I decided in February that I'd be better served with a separate work planner. I spent a lot of time and money getting the system set up, working out how it would actually function in action, and thinking through the potential problems. I started using the separate planner on 1 April. After one week everything was falling into extreme chaos and I had already managed to double-book myself three times. I am simply not organized enough to juggle multiple planners. For me, it is more stressful NOT seeing what I need to do at work. Plus, I totally forget about personal commitments when I'm at work and will forget to go to lunch with someone or forget to run errands after work. I look over my day shortly before bed and note anything missed and pencil it for future days, or quickly dash off a missed email or make an adjustment to the schedule. It's just much easier and simpler for me to keep everything together. In the morning, I review my entire day; work, personal, chores, reminders... everything. I feel a sense of control and clarity seeing everything I need to deal with all together and organized.

  12. Well, I have done both. I think the circumstances of your work environment determine which to use. My cleaning business I had with my personal info, but working for the title company it was separate from my personal life except I would note what days I had to wear a suit to work.

  13. For many of us who are self-employed and work from home, the idea of two separate lives - work and non-work - and a 9-5 office day - is a total myth. It's 9.30pm here in the UK and I've been fixing a broken hot water system in one of our holiday apartments. I would have done it earlier but, after arriving back home by train from a meeting and then visiting an elderly relative, I had to pick my daughter up from sports training. I'm now on cottage holiday booking enquiries by email and I've still got all the business recycling and rubbish bins to sort out for collection and animals to feed. I then hope to see my wife and ensure my girls are in bed. Yes, everything needs to be in a planning system otherwise something would get missed, but two organisers would be a disaster!

  14. My main organiser is a (personal sized) 7/8" Winchester, mainly for home. And my work organiser is a slimline 3CL that travels to and from the office. I use that for key facts, such as the IT helpdesk number, and for work to-do lists. Work diary is Outlook, so this system runs OK for me.

  15. I have found that it really depends on the job what types of planners i use. Right now I have a job that requires no meetings, and I have very few phone calls coming in during my work time. I do need to keep track of the work my team does, which requires keeping a lot of stats, their work hours and attendance, etc. For that I use a Martha Stewart hardbound 8X11 calendar. Each week has seven days in a vertical format with no hours - just morning, moon and evening plus a few more spaces to write in at the end of each day. Along the right side is a bullet list to fill in. This works perfect for tracking who on my team is out, late, etc., as well as specific stats during the day. So that bound planner is strictly for work and stays at my desk. However, I do have a personal Malden that I carry with me that I keep all my personal info in. I also use the monthly pages to capture who is in and out at work and birthdays, events coming up, etc. I also use it to jot down notes during the day for things I have to follow up on or create a project for, etc. My Malden is my brain and my heart, so everything personal goes in there. I keep that out on top of my big work planner, but tuck it away in my purse each night and continue writing when I get home. I tend to scribble a lot, so I also keep a Moleskine journal to do a brain dump in every night and sort out what I small actions I need to take to reach my goals at work and in my personal life.

  16. I must combine work and personal info into one planner otherwise I'd never be able to keep meetings, dinners, appointments, or any other commitment. I do have two planners. I sync each planner once per week or as needed as I only take one with me per day. It's either an A5 day or a Personal day.

  17. I have a personal size malden with all things personal and family orientated that goes everywhere with me and when I go back to work I'll have an A5 malden for work, I can't take work stuff home with me as it has confidential patient info in it. The only things that will be in both is my work shifts and any lunch dates etc so I don't miss them :)

  18. I have a personal size malden with all things personal and family orientated that goes everywhere with me and when I go back to work I'll have an A5 malden for work, I can't take work stuff home with me as it has confidential patient info in it. The only things that will be in both is my work shifts and any lunch dates etc so I don't miss them :)

  19. I have two different planners - an A5 at work (which stays at work) and my personal filofax. I work part-time and so the work days (including meeting people for lunch etc) go into the work planner, as do all meeting notes, relevant contact details and about 18 months of WO2P, vertical diary (designed by me, with a tiny weekend and the space freed up used as a notes section on the RHS). My work also insists on us using Outlook so I have an electronic diary too but I have a note written in on my notes page each week that says 'synch diary'. I just note which days are work days in my personal filofax and plan all non-work stuff in there. I have a fairly set 9-5.30 paid work job so beyond knowing I need to go to work, I don't really note much work stuff in my personal filofax. It works for me...

  20. Technically I use 3 planners; personal, work and animals. I use an A5 for work and personals for personal and animals. Generally I leave the work planner at work during the week and take it home on the weekends. I find that if I write things down I'm much more likely to remember them. I also use my Outlook calendar at work and my Google calendar for personal things, but this is mostly just to set up reminders. The paper planners tend to be much better to refer back to for information. I've used Franklin Covey planners for most of my planning life (a few more than 20 years) and switched to Filofax about a year ago and am much happier with the flexibility offered by Filofax planners.

  21. I have 8-5 job and my personal life. I do have a pkanner at work *not a filifax), and my personal Malden(s). My job planner is at work and my personal is always with me. But if I was a business owner, I'd have one filofax.

  22. I have my own business and I have an extremely flexible lifestyle so trying to separate work (my passion) and everything else in life causes me too much stress. I particularly wanted a way to plan and record my whole life in one place. Having gone away from Franklin Planners and Leuchtturm diaries in favour of a diary on my iPad I found that at the end of the year I had a great record of all my appointments but no record whatsoever of what I’d actually DONE!

    So, at the end of 2013 I went in search of the 'Perfect Planner'. That’s when I discovered Philofaxy! I made a mind map of my entire life divided it up into six areas and these I colour coded. I bought an A5 Purple Malden from the UK (not available in NZ) and pages from DIY Fish (2 pages to a day). The right hand page is my journal and the left I use for my appointments, to do’s, quotes etc. If I need more pages I just add them in. I have a colour coding system that corresponds with the areas of my Life Mind Map and the main reason for this was so I could tell at a glance if I was neglecting any part of my life. I have incorporated some elements from the Franklin planner that I particularly liked; I compiled a Master Task list with a monthly index on the back so I can see what's to do and what I did! It’s working great for me. If any one wants pdfs of these, (or my mind map) I’m happy to share. So definitely one planner for life for me. I’d be lost with more than one.

  23. I have an A5 Malden for work (I'm a teacher) and a person Malden for my wallet and personal planner. The work Filofax travels home with me each day - it has confidential information that I don't want to leave sitting around, and I definitely don't want it stolen! But I generally don't open it in the evenings, unless I have marking or planning to do for the next day. It will get opened on the weekend when I do most of my planning for the week.

    The personal Malden is a basic personal calendar (week per page) which I use for reminders and appointments, and space for health tracking and note-taking. The kind of planning I do in it isn't super detailed, but it is useful as I have it with me all the time and so I don't forget any appointments or to-dos.

  24. I have 2 planners work and home I use color coding in my home planner but use my work planner mainly for task so I sinc my planners once a week don't normally have to put anything about work in my home planner but I do have to note my home life in my work planner I simply just use a color coded star so I know something is going on when I'm planning my day the night before