Over the last few years, plenty of people have tried going paper-free when it comes to their planning. However, we think there are several good reasons to consider keeping physical copies of your essential planning – so the desk diary is here to stay!
Here’s our arguments…
1. Writing something down is better for processing
It is now a well-established fact that writing something down by hand is a much better way for your brain to process a piece of information, compared to typing it out or adding it to an app.
Therefore, the electronic reminder coming from your Outlook or Google calendar is all very well, but if you haven’t really engaged with the details of the appointment you put in it, that reminder is likely to come far too late to be of practical use.
For example, you need to go to an important meeting, where you’ll need to raise several key points. When you go to add it to your digital calendar, it’s done in a couple of taps, and you don’t really think about what those key points are, or the other things you therefore need to prepare. But if you’d taken those extra few seconds to write it out by hand, it could have inspired that quick and all important to-do list of research topics that you needed to check out prior to heading in (and the 30 min warning from Outlook didn’t give you enough warning to do it!)
2. You can get more creative with the format
Once you’ve selected the basic format for your physical diary, the only limit to your creative formatting choices is your imagination!
Using different coloured pens, sticky notes, writing some appointments larger, using differently shaped bullet points for types of appointment… whatever helps your brain process your plans, you can do it easily with a physical diary.
If you really want a beautiful planner, we love seeing what people are up to on Instagram with fine-liners, pastel highlighters and even washi tape to make their appointments really pop.
3. Think pocket/desk/wall for perfect planning…
Sometimes it’s good to have a different place to put certain information, in order to make sure it’s always to hand at the right time. For example, if you have the following three items to hand, you can optimise your planning perfectly…
- Pocket/Bag-sized Diary: Get all your time slots written down in here to help you keep track of your day. This is also a great place to keep anything confidential you might not want a colleague spotting, like reminders relating to doctor’s appointments or social plans.
- Desk Diary: A bigger format, perfect for including all the details of your meetings and appointments, such as what to prepare or bring.
- Wall Planner: Ideal for helping you communicate with your team, as well as providing an easy visual reference point for big events and milestones (see our previous post on why planning on your wall is such a useful approach).
Want to get something useful for your wall?
If this post has you thinking about buying a wall planner for your office, why not check out this brilliant offer from Sasco? You can claim a FREE Odeon Cinema voucher with your purchase!
4. And finally… you don’t have to charge a diary!
In this age of portable chargers and longer battery life in devices, finding that your laptop or phone has died at the worst possible moment is at least becoming rarer. However, it’s still worth considering that a physical diary can’t let you down in this respect.
While of course you should still make sure you have more than one copy of crucial appointments (see the system above… its perfect for that!) your physical diary will always be ‘on’, and it’s never going to be an issue to have it available to you, even in an environment where you need to have your technology switched off.
We hope these arguments help confirm that physical diaries and planners should be part of every business’s shopping list, ahead of the big rush to buy 2019 diaries at the end of the year! If you’re not sure which product would be best for you, get in touch with our friendly team who would be happy to help!
Have a great week!
Join us next week for Part 3 of ‘Work Smarter’!
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