At the moment I am anxiously awaiting a delivery: calendar inserts and a few accessories which I ordered just after Christmas to use in my brand new Filofax A5 Finsbury planner (purchased at a lovely store called The Papery, located in downtown Victoria, BC).
I am waiting, and – perhaps you can relate to this? – I have discovered that I am NOT a very patient waiter.
Normally in a case like this I’d rely on the package tracking information to tide me over until the actual delivery arrived (isn’t it fun to watch something you’ve purchased travel the continent?!), but in this case it’s coming from the US via Canada Post, which means that there is no tracking information available. (Rather fitting and somewhat ironic, no?!)
So I check the mailbox every day, hoping against hope that my stuff has finally arrived so I can get on with setting up my new planner for 2014 already… but so far, I’m still waiting.
And waiting. And waiting.
Why on earth, you might wonder, would a gadget-loving person like yours truly decide to devolve from digital and start using an old-fashioned paper planner again?
Because of memories.
Though I’ve pretty well always gone digital when it comes to work (that is, as long as digital has been available!), up until a few years ago I preferred to use a handwritten datebook for my personal life. But when I discovered that I was able to sync organizational info on my computer with first my iPod Touch, and then my iPhone… well, I ditched the datebook and gave myself over fully to Microsoft Outlook’s Calendar, Tasks, and Contacts (the program I’ve always used at work) for organizing the details of my personal life.
But… while Outlook does exactly what I need it to do for my job (and I have no plans to change my system there), I have come to realize after a number of frustrations that it falls short in terms of what I want it to do for the rest of my life.
When it comes to the personal side of things, I want my planner to provide me with MORE than just a record of where I went and what I did.
I want to be able to flip through actual, physical pages and see handwritten notes and comments I’ve made about something that happened on a particular day.
I want to be able to make one-time changes – add in the title and author of the book our book club is reading at a particular meeting, for example – without losing or messing up the settings on a recurring Outlook event or task.
I want a place, in context, to save programs and ticket stubs and other bits of memorabilia – things that really don’t belong anywhere in particular but that I can’t bring myself to toss because they’re small, tangible reminders of a time and place in my life.
I want my planner to become a book of memories.
And I’m excited about turning my new Filofax into just that!
Oh, I’ll still continue using Outlook (synced with my iPhone) for all my Contacts. And I’ll keep my iPhone apps for finances, passwords, and lists – because all that stuff is just data, information, and to me it really wouldn’t make sense to change the way I manage it.
But when it comes to my calendar and task list – the record of how I live my life from day to day – I’m excitedly looking forward to my return to the old ways.
Are you more about paper or digital? Or some of both?