Selecting an efficient personal calendar

Even though we haven’t officially said goodbye to this year, we are already planning activities, appointments and vacations for next year. Here are tips when choosing from the multitude of sizes and formats of planners and calendars available.

Decide start/end dates: Calendars can run the school year, quarterly, and the calendar year. Moms may prefer an August-July planner, while professionals may find the traditional January-December format suits their projects, deadlines and tax schedule. Purchase next year’s calendar well in advance to avoid the hiccup of transitioning to the new calendar.

Electronic, paper, smart phone: Electronic is useful when you have access to a computer. This works well when your schedule of appointments needs to be shared with co-workers or family members. Paper is the most popular, comes in a variety of sizes from wall to small pocket size. If you are a “paper person” (you know who you are), you like the security of having appointments written down. This works best when your activities and meetings do not need to be shared with others since a paper planner tends to be more personal. Keeping your calendar on your phone is growing in popularity. Many programs are available to share, merge, and sync multiple calendars of co-workers, sales agents and family members. Regardless of format, a calendar needs to be updated regularly.

Update with ease: Be aware of how easy it is to alter an appointment. Birthdays don’t change, but dentist appointments do!

Month-at-a-glance: Seeing a whole month at once allows for better time management. When you see the heavy spots in your month, you are able to rearrange, cancel or say no to further commitments that may lead to stress and overwhelm.

Ask yourself what kind of calendar will I use, should I use. It is a personal choice that fits your style and how you adapt it for your needs and lifestyle. Calendars make great holiday gifts when you consider the recipient’s personality and preference. Who knew calendars could be such a personal and thoughtful gift!

Lisa Phillips, owner of SimpleWorks, can be reached at 981-7733 or by e-mail at lisa_phillips@bellsouth.net.