25 February 2021

The Philofaxy Guide to Diary Inserts

Having the best diary inserts and other pages in your organiser is key to your organiser helping you each and every day. 

It doesn't matter if you have the most expensive organiser on the market, without the right inserts for your needs it will not help you meet your goals and targets every day. 

Given that our measurement of time is split in to years, months, weeks, days, hours and minutes. It is natural that diary inserts are split in the same way. There are of course some variations to take consideration of as well. 

Going for a finer division of time per page (day per page) whilst it gives you more visibility of each day, allowing you to divide the page by smaller increments of time, the problem is of course more pages and the loss of visibility of the rest of the future days without flipping the pages constantly. 

A coarser division of time say a month per view or month per page gives you a better view of past and future days, but lacks the detail unless you increase the page size to allow more space per day in the lines or boxes. 

Somewhere in the middle we have week view or week per page. This is the compromise that most people tend to go for. However, there are plenty of variations to consider.  

Supply - Where are you going to obtain your inserts from? There are regular stores both 'brick and mortar' and on-line stores to be able to get pre-printed and pre-punched inserts from.  

There are numerous sources of inserts that you can download and print yourself including Philofaxy of course! Etsy is another favourite site to be able to purchase downloadable files for a fee. 

If you want to retain the same design/layout/size for many years in to the future, you are reliant on those particular inserts still being made available or being sold in future. If you pick a popular size/layout then it shouldn't be too much of an issue. 

Design your own  - There is a lot of satisfaction in designing your own inserts, as you can adjust the design incrementally to suit your needs. It might take you a few attempts to nail the design to perfection, but you know it will always be available and you can print out parts of a year or future years well ahead of time if you plan meetings 4-5 years from now! Some people do... 

If you don't want to dive in the 'deep-end' and design one from scratch you can take one of the Philofaxy designs and modify it to your own requirements without too much difficulty. It's not a beginners job, but it should be within the scope of most people with a bit of thought and preparation. 

Monday or Sunday start - Both are possible on pre-printed inserts, although you will find most countries tend to use Monday start. There are people that want other days of the week as a start to their week because of their shift work patterns... they really do have to 'design their own' 

Week numbers - Do you use Week numbers... depending where you are in the world there are three standards for week numbering, it falls in with what day is considered the start of the week. We purposely don't include the week numbers on Philofaxy inserts because of the three different standards in the world. You can always write them on if you wish!  

Size, Portability, Annual cost - Test out your chosen size of inserts to death, not just a few days, give it at least two or three weeks before you decide on the size. Test the size with ordinary blank paper of the size with a hand drawn insert or if you can print off a few weeks even better. 

The size you pick will impact on the portability, how easy is that size of organiser able to fit in to your bag, backpack or fit on your desk when open. A4 is a great size until you see how much desk real estate they take up! 

Do you actually need printed inserts? - What!! Think about the simplicity of the Bulletin Journal, a lot of people use that format or a variation on that format. 

We also have 'undated' diary files on Philofaxy you can download and print yourself, you just write in the dates on the sheets, they might work just as well for you, alternatively you can use them for advance planning for far off dates so details are not missed without having to have a full year printed off. 

When to change?  You don't have to change over on 1 January, you also don't need to be able to fit in a full 12 months in to your organiser. Some people only carry a couple of months of inserts at a time. They have a routine of archiving past pages and adding future pages on a weekly or monthly basis. They supplement their inserts with a set of monthly inserts or a year planner to cover the full 12 months of the year so nothing falls through the cracks. 

Remember you will find all the Philofaxy inserts for the current year here.... All the inserts for future years here... and a for past years here

Just to recap the format of our inserts changes from 2022 onwards, this post fully explains the changes

I hope this post has opened your mind to some other ideas, to help you solve the problem of finding the perfect diary inserts for your needs... 

1 comment:

  1. I love how to the point and thorough this post is. Thank you Steve, a very enjoyable read :)