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How do you stay organized?

This is the time of year when we buy our diary for next year – do you buy a day to a page, a weekly view or just a monthly view.  Maybe you have done away with diaries all together and just use an online calendar?  I seem to try to combine too many methods and lose productivity in the end.I am always looking for more, better ways to be productive.  I seem to like using Mark Forster Auto Focus System   It is very simple to use and it does help me to  get things done.  The main part of finding a system is to find one that you will actually use. That is why I have gone with one of the simplest ones that I have found.Where I fall down is  with my diary, I just don’t write in it. I used to love my Filofax, oh to have everything in one place. Then I gave it up in the late 90’s because I found it a bit bulky to carry and all the accessories can really add up.  It is funny that there seems to be a resurgence in Filofax love, regardless that an insert diary costs more than a Moleskine.
After my beloved Filofax, I played with several sizes of  diary with various rates of success but at that time my life was very different as I had a full time job so no extra projects to keep a handle on.  These days we all try to keep so many balls in the air, it has become a rarity for someone just to have a full time job and a personal life.  I have a couple of blogs, write for Totally Money, have an Etsy shop all while trying to pay the mortgage.   I feel as though my time is stretched and I must be more organized.
For the coming year, I have opted for a page a day diary where I can hopefully combine my daily to do list with my diary. I have been reading up on productivity and the one suggestion that keep cropping up is to write your to do list before going to bed.  I am jumping on that bandwagon as they say writing your list before bed makes for better sleep.
How do you manage your productivity?  It looks as though we will be busier trying to find alternative streams of income with this recession continuing. We will be time poor as well as cash strapped.  Please leave me a comment on how you manage your time.  Are there any tricks you do to make yourself get things done.  Are you still in love with your Filofax, tell me why.

7 thoughts on “How do you stay organized?”

  1. I bought my filofax in 2009 & am definitely still in love with it. Love gadgets, but I find nothing beats the simplicity & elegance of a leather binder to get organised & make quick notes. It also appeals to my love of stationery at the same time!

    I’d recommend for all things filofax 🙂

  2. I love the GTD system by David Allen. I used to have a Filofax but since the arrival of the iPhone I’ve gone all hi-tech!!

    I now use an excellent piece of software called OmniFocus. It’s on my mac, my iPad and iPhone and tasks, info and projects are synced over the air between them all.

    I always have my phone on me – so I use it as my “in-box”, collecting to-do information. When I’m back at my desk, it’s all waiting for me on my iMac.

    The app is pricey – no getting away from that – but for me it’s been a fantastic investment and worth every penny.

  3. Hi Anita, I too have a bit of a stationery love and when I had a Filofax I would love to shop for the accessories. Thanks for the link and commenting. I might rethink my diary yet again.

  4. Hi Richard, thanks for the comment. OmniFocus sounds amazing! I looked it up as soon as I read the comment but it is only for MAC. I now have a little netbook to work on after my MAC died so I would only be using it on my iPhone. I will look into it if I get another MAC.

  5. Hi there,

    I use a Filofax A5 to get my stuff done and I am very, very happy with it.

    I used to be a gadget guy normally, but I find that I get less stuff done if I try to manage my tasks and on the iPhone. Too much distraction by all those messages and notifications I guess… Not that the smartphone is not a valuable tool in my day to day live, but it is more for capturing things I come a cross and to maintain my social contacts.

    But if it comes to appointments and tasks, I like the Filofax just so much better. And there are of course the usual benefits from being analog. You can write what you want wherever you what with whatever sort of pen you like. You are not forced to squeeze your thoughts in little boxes, you can just let them roam free, the way it was always meant to be.

    And then there is something rather intangible and for some people certainly incomprehensible. You see, I have a tendency to go against the mainstream, there is no other way to explain it: When everyone else was analog, I was one of the first to go all digital. And now that everyone has gone digital, I embrace analogue and old-fashioned stuff, like a mechanical watch, my Filofax or a Double-Edged Razor.

    I know I am weird….

  6. Hi Rene, You are not weird at all! I was one the first people to jump on electronic organizers first I had a Wizard then a Palm Pilot but they did not help with getting stuff done. There is something about writing. I do love my iPhone for reminders especially for bills and Evernote. I could write a whole post about my love of Evernote.

    I am with you on the analog thing but even more Luddite as I am using a Moleshine diary. Thanks for commenting and I hope you do so again! Vxx

  7. Viviana, you are not alone! I’ve been a Filofax (and other ring bound systems) user since the 1980s, and although I’ve tried most of the gadgets that are available, as they have become available, I’ve always returned to my Filofax – in my case it’s now a Personal size Cavendish, and I operate a modified form of GTD from there. No sync issues, single and fast data entry (faster than any digital device I’ve come across), instant access to my data, and as you say, I can have it exactly the way I want it and change it at any time (and I do!). I run my own business and I have a lot to keep on top of, and my paper-based system does it all for me. Diary-wise, I’ve discovered that i *need* to see a week at a time to give me perspective. I like the idea of a day-per-page for detailed task allocation, but Wo2P always wins for me. This year’s diary is from Filofax Denmark, and I guess next year’s may well come from the same source, although I’m experimenting with some Japanese undated weekly pages as well…..

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