The pages themselves are fairly customizable; Filofax has a number of different layouts for your calendar (monthly, weekly, daily, etc.) and a number of different inserts such as to-do lists, address book pages, and daily schedule sheets. This is my second year with my lovely Filofax, and I think I've finally nailed down a plan that works for me. The best part is, if my general organizational lifestyle changes in 2013, all I have to do is change around my pages!
I keep the whole year's calendar at the front on a month-by-month basis. Maybe it's just habit, but I like being able to see the whole month at a glance, which makes planning blog posts and getting a big picture view of what events I have coming up that month.
One of my favorite parts is the to-do list pages! Now, just because I have an "official" to-do list spot doesn't keep me fromt making to-do lists everywhere else, but it's nice to put the sort of big picture tasks all up front. At the beginning of the term, for instance, I put a list of all of my assignments here. Though I usually make up my daily to-do lists with "do this assignment today", etc. I know that everything on the master to-do list needs done at some point, like discussion board posts and final papers. So no matter how I ultimately divy up the workload, I have a master task list. Things like "buy birthday card stash" and "clean iTunes library" also get written down here, as there's not usually a major due date for them.
I've got a few clear pockets in the front to stash business cards I've collected and a few spare of my own, as well as notes and loose papers that I need to hang on to or file. Not to mention a few inspirational goodies, like a Matt Cooke hockey card, Yoda quote, and expected graduation date xD Gotta have something to cheer you on each time you open up your planner!
I splurged on the little daily schedule sheets this time around, but so far haven't found a good way to use them. There aren't quite enough to use daily, yet there are days where I have so little planned I have no reason to use them. They're nice to toss in by the 'today' tab if I do have a jam packed day, but I find I tend to use my Google calendar/Teux Deux to sort those kinds of daily things since they're easier to drag-and-drop around.
Now this is really the meat of my Filofax. The bulk of the planning is laid out week-to-week; on one side I've got my weekly schedule such as classes and office hours, work schedules and payday. Doctor appointments go here, dinner dates, etc. Since I'm only taking a few classes this term, I've got them colored coded in my schedule to match their assignments on the next page. Sometimes I even get fancy and doodle accompanying pictures to things!
This week is a little weird looking since it's Spring Break and I basically don't have anything planned except getting some school work done and going to work. Normally it looks like it does below, instead of this week's skimpy-looking schedule. The flip side of the page is a big open space for notes. Currently, I use the top portion to write down my assignments for the coming week - what needs read, what needs emailed in, and big project due dates as well. They're all checklist style so I can mark them off as they're complete, as well as color-coded to match what class they're for.
Little notes get scribbled around there too, though lately I've been testing out jotting down my little daily tasks down bottom. I just cross them off as I go, and it's not like those things need done exactly that day, but based on my schedule and what things are looking like I like to come up with a game plan of what I should and/or can do. Normally I scribble these down in the margins of notebooks, so it's nice to keep them on me at all times. This is probably overkill (this is basically just a hard-copy of my Teux Deux list) but I'm addicted to writing things down xD
The back contains a little notepad; an address book that I don't use much, but would like to convert my contacts into to have a physical copy that's not on my phone or in my computer (might as well not have a separate address book either, since that's an extra book to store!); and some divided pages that I keep my blog ideas, dinner ideas, notes for class, and little fun lists (like travel ideas and favorite songs, etc.) in.
And there you have it! This is just how I keep my life organized, and I'm sure it'll change as I go along, but I love working towards finding a way of keeping things on task. All in all, it works for me, and what doesn't, well, I just have to keep playing around with things to find out!
How do you stay organized? Do you have a planner? How do you keep on task?