I have tried, believe me I’ve tried. Electronic diaries/calendars; notes on my Iphone; ‘proper’ To Do lists with timings and all that. I even have, as I referred to recently, a shelf full of half-filled notebooks, most of which contain some form of to do list.
But every time I try to introduce a new, improved system of notes and organisation, I invariably default to the one thing which always, always works for me: post-it notes. At present the collection of green stickies on my desk includes the following cryptic reminders:
- Cross-reference both plans
- Order wetsuit
- Too ambitious for one person?
- Eulogy to the post-it
- Definition of eulogy [guess who wasn’t sure she was using the right word? Turns out a eulogy is usually for a dead person, and my post-its definitely have a life of their own, so that title for this post was abandoned]
- G. Off. in later stages?
- Book Mad Science
Some of these are work-related and some not. (I’ll leave you to guess why I might need a wetsuit for my job as charity consultant!) Several are already completed and about to be binned; some will make it into the electronic reminder system and others will float about on the desk until they irritate me so much I either do them or bin them anyway. But the system works!
It works because:
- I’m not surgically attached from my phone and don’t look at it for days on end, so it’s not a useful tool to me. Plus it takes too long to make a note with just a thumb.
- Much of my life takes place away from the computer. (This is the same reason I still have a paper diary, although I am under strict orders to use my online calendar too so as to preserve marital communication and harmony.)
- I’m never far from a post-it (yes, I have a pad of them in the bedroom).
- I also have an army of pens occupying my house, handbag and car.
- They are just the right size for random jottings which may or may not make sense in a week’s time.
- I can stick them into the relevant notebook when I need to.
- I just like paper and pen better!
Post-its? Love them, can’t live without them.