A return to the fold

Despite my previous protestations in November, I have once again returned to the Filofax family. I know! Me? Mr. “I can get it all done with an iPad”!!

20130407-100717.jpgTrust me, there are good reasons, which I’ll get to later. But after quite a bit of online reviewing (and some basic biblical coveting) I finally and unexpectedly came across an A5 Fusion Filofax in the flesh yesterday.

I bought it.

There was a good deal of checking it out from top to bottom, checking the size, weight and build quality. But more than anything, I was sold on one feature of this brand new binder. More on this below.

Wait – what happened to “going paperless”?

I’ve come to the conclusion that I can’t work without paper, so for the past month or so, I’ve been experimenting with different systems to combine my electronic and paper resources. I do a lot of writing and being able to “brainstorm” on paper is an indispensable method for me.

Having recently completed a massive clear out of my desk in preparation for moving home, I realised that I’d collected a lot of useful resources on paper – but that I could simply scan these into Evernote and shred the original notes.

Use of paper needn’t result in collecting mountains of paper.

A Filofax still represents the easiest way to collect notes on paper and later remove them for easy scanning. Moleskine notebooks aren’t as conducive to page removal! Filofaxes are very configurable and really play to my need to make things my own by customising them. So far, so rationalised. To me, anyway.

Why A5? It’s massive!

It’s big, I’ll admit. But the binder is actually quite light and – most importantly – contains a pocket that’s perfectly sized for my iPad mini. So I can always have both with me. I’m going to use this in my home office and work-related trips to clients. So it’ll either be on a desk or in my bag.

Personal-sized Filofax paper is just too small for me to be practical. Having used it before, I found it restrictive and awkward. Experience has shown me that A5 is a good size and it’s so easy to create your own inserts as A5 is a commonly-available paper format.

I spent some time yesterday evening setting it up. (I know how to party). I removed the diary immediately, as I use electronic solutions for this. This reduced the weight significantly. I was left with several sections for notes and other paper resources.

One inspired brainwave later, I discovered a pack of pre-punched A5 paper I’d bought a couple of years ago at De Bijenkorf in Amsterdam. High quality paper, perfectly formatted for a Filofax, but at a fraction of the cost of Filofax-branded sheets. I’ll definitely need to get more next time I’m in Amsterdam.

Completing the work focus, an A5 plastic envelope for foreign currency and collecting expenses receipts and some project planning templates.

What next?

I’m sure it’ll take a while to get it working exactly as required. But it’ll be included in my weekly review (and daily sweeps) checking it for content I need to save and scan, things that can be binned and notes that represent actions for me to add to projects. These will go straight into a project in OmniFocus.

I’ll post updates here on my return to the Filofax “family” – hopefully this time it’ll stick!

  1. […] a related note, I dug out my A5 Fusion in black, firstly to seek out some A5 paper that was still in there. But then, to wonder how I […]

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