Sunday, April 01, 2012


I'm happy to report that after a couple of days of having a break from bedtime, I'm starting to feel more like my old self. I'll probably resume duties later this week, but for now, it's giving Tom and Colden a chance to bond at bedtime, and it's giving me a chance to get some much-needed rest.

So the other night, I thought about setting up my monthly and weekly schedules for work, now that my goals for 2012 have all been outlined and approved. I did pretty darn good last year, but I want to do even better this year. To that end, I've decided to revamp my entire method for list-making and completing tasks.

If you're a high-end-office-supply-junkie like me, you'll probably have heard of a company called Levenger. They make some of the most amazing leather office accessories, handbags, computer bags and travel bags that I've ever seen. Note that most of these things are not necessities for your home office - we're talking $40 leather notepads, here - but they are beautiful and fun.

Levenger has this wonderful  flexible note-taking system called Circa, which I've lusted after for years. Of course, our finances being what they were/are and my inner cheapskate would never let me actually spend $100 on a set of notebooks. I mean, they're notebooks, for cryin' out loud!

Then about three years ago, I discovered that Staples has their own version of this note-taking system called Arc. Much more reasonably priced, and they offer pretty much every accessory that Levenger offers. So I splurged and bought myself a notebook, some dividers and pocket folders, and a couple of fancy schmancy little task pads that fit right into your notebook.

This week, since they were having a huge 25% off sale on all Arc products and accessories, I went back to Staples and splurged on a special hole punch and stocked up on refill paper and a 2012 planner for my letter-size notebook. I also grabbed a set of the one-inch discs that form the "spine" of the notebook and allow you to expand it as you need. After a brief session at Starbucks, I came home with a newly organized and expanded notebook, ready for me to meet my 2012 goals!

I also found a free downloadable to-do page that lets me organize all my tasks for each day, including appointments, meetings, and long-term projects.

Am I being the tiniest bit obsessive with this system? Maybe. Will it work for me? Definitely.

Being the creative sort, I very often feel like my life is getting out of control. This is my way of trying to get a handle on my projects, tasks and ideas. There are certain, concrete tasks that I must do every day if I want to accomplish these this year, and this is going to be how I do it.

Also while browsing through the latest Levenger catalog, I saw a little blurb about a book called "Making Ideas Happen". Written by a former Goldman Sachs consultant, the author aims to create a method of productivity for creative people. 'Cause we all know how organized most creative people are, right?

So I went over and signed up for the free version of his Action Method Online. There is, naturally, a paid version that gives you unlimited tasks, but the free version allows you to create up to 50 action items at one time. (And really - if I have more than 50 action items waiting for me, I'm in big-ass trouble.)  I'm going to give this all a go for 30 days and see how it goes.

My last action item for this organizing makeover? Find some cool bead stickers and decals to splash all over the cover of my new notebook.

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