One of the cool things I’ve learned about using a Franklin planner and before that a Daytimer, is how easy it is to keep events and obligations from falling through the cracks of life. I want to share a bit about how I use the tools of the monthly calendar (including Google calendars) and the daily pages to keep my poop in a group and to make it look like I actually am on top of things. Fake til you make is a good mantra!
Whenever an event or appointment comes my way, I always go first to the monthly calendar. A quick glance tells me whether I have the time available. I always review my Google calendars, which are all combined into one, to transfer any of the appropriate obligations to my paper calendar. Below is a photo of half of a monthly calendar spread.
In a practical sense, one could do the same thing with a digital calendar but my brain seems to work better if I write it down and then the event or appointment is lodged a bit more firmly in my brain.
My monthly calendar is keyed back to my daily pages. As you can see, there isn’t really a lot of space in the date blocks on the monthly page with each block being about 1 inch by 1 1/2 inches. So I need to abbreviate in order to fit it in. I use parenthesis to give me a clue about where to look for the information. Within the parenthesis I include the date of when I received the information which drove the calendar entry.
Recently I spoke with a couple of businesses regarding a greenhouse project at the school. The monthly calendar simply has the name of the person who I am meeting with followed by a parenthesis with a date.
If I can’t recall what those names refer to, I know to go to my daily page on the 22nd to find the notes.
By looking at the page on the 22 and looking for Jason, I have more details about what the meeting is about. I also want to point out that I always underline the name in my notes and include the phone number if it is appropriate. Likely I may need to call that person again, so having all of that information in one place saves me time. It also saves me time in paging through my contacts on my phone to find the number. I don’t know about you, but my phone seems to update all of the time and then I have to learn how to operate the damn thing again. Or sometimes I use my desk phone to make calls and that sucker isn’t smart enough to save numbers for me.
So there it is. Pretty straightforward. I think it is even more powerful if you are juggling multiple responsibilities. For me, having 1 place (or system in the case of combined paper and digital calendars) to look to for the calendar information keeps me from shuffling back and forth or double booking myself and then having to call back and change appointments.
How do you handle the details of your scheduled events?