Over the years, I have tried out all sorts of time and tasks management tools. From Microsoft Outlook, to Palm Pilot, to Web based like Google Calendar, to iPad / Nexus etc, everything works well for a while until I found it hard work to keep up and using them less and less.
In 2013 summer, I came across Ray Blake’s blog. The first thing caught my eyes is the name of the blog “My Life All In One Place” – up to that point, I was still experiementing different tools for different things and it was quite messy. Read his first blog where he described his own experiences on using electronic organiser – how it constraining instead of enabling and why he went back to his Filofax. That summed up a lot of my own experiences and common pitfalls of technologies really well.
I am not quite ready to give up all my technologies yet but can see the attractions of Filofax so I bought my first Filofax – a Lyndhurst A4 Organiser. Absolutely love every bit of it but did find it too big to carry around so replaced it with a Lyndhurst A5 Organiser. Again absolutely love it but it is still too big so I got a Filofax Boston Compact Organiser. Third time lucky I suppose, it has been with me all the time since. All three Filofax organisers are very well made, look elegant and I love the feel of soft leather. Most important of all, Ray is right about pen and paper, nothing can beat the simplicity of writing things down on a Filofax. Also, you do not need to worry about mobile or wifi signal or running out of battery.
My life all in one place then? Not quite… Filofax does its limitations. In general, assuming no technology issue, electronic organiser is still better when looking back to past events or task, making changes, managing recurring task and calendar event and so on. I can make virtually unlimited notes on task or upcoming event in the cloud. I still find technology indispensable but did trim the number of tools down to two – remember the milk for todo list and Google Calendar for calender events. Filofax is used for my daily planning in the morning, weekly planning on Sunday, making distilled notes about task and event, quick data entry of all kind.
Technology is improving all the time. All the tools I have tried – have their strength and weekness. I think I have found a hybrid approach in personal organisation that work best for me for now … until the next big thing or inspiration comes around.