Wednesday, August 21, 2019

A to Z Tabs: a Filing Cabinet in My Planner

I bet I had 25 different divider tabs in my planner the first week I began using one.  I had a tab for shopping although I only had one insert that was tracking my online orders.  I had an "addresses" tab but only 1 page of my frequently used addresses.  Pretty soon I couldn't find anything even with all those tabs!

After looking at many systems online, and modifying them for my own tastes, I began using A to Z tabs, like a filing cabinet of sorts, in my planner.  If there is any piece of information or inserts that I need to keep up with, I file in alphabetically in my tabs.

At the very front of these tabs, I keep an index of all the inserts that are included (see above).  Periodically I will go through the tabs and see if I have added or deleted items, or need to add or delete items and update this index.  When it starts getting messy with the cros-outs or runs out of room, I make a new one.

Something that has become invaluable to me is how the tabs themselves work.  I rarely use these tabs for their intended purpose of keeping up with addresses, but using them to jot down brief information has become my favorite part.  Some examples are writing down the post office's hours (above) or the pin number to get into my laptop.

If you don't want to write on the tabs, you can do something else that I also do:  write your information on sticky notes.

I used to forget my hair color name and number, but now with MUCH use, I don't really look at that note anymore!  <grin>

Putting private or sensitive information in your planner

I know some might be opposed to putting passwords or account numbers in their planner.  Here's a little tip for you that I learned from Giftie. Make a key that helps you decode private information.  For example, say your numerical key is +2 and the account number you want to remember is 3522.  Write in your planner 1300.  You'll have to remember your numerical key though and you won't want to write it down unless you find a secure way to do that.

The above also works with "When did I last..." change the air filter, change the oil, call my Mom, etc.

Other things you can write on the inside of the tabs:
  • your children's social security number
  • passwords (easier for me than a long list of passwords)
  • door codes
  • ACT school code
  • phone passcode
  • sizes (aka info on a sticky note)
  • Vet hours
  • hair clippers guard # (I used this a lot, my boys just tell the barber what they want, now!)
The majority of my tabs hold passwords (use a key!)

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