Post No. 1 for The Comparison Project

Today Laurie is joining us with her first post on The Comparison Project, where she will be using a gorgeous Brown Personal Belmont to compare multiple planning systems. Those of us who can’t settle on a single type of inserts may want to pay attention! (Myself included)!!!

“The Secret of Getting Ahead is Getting Started”
–  Mark Twain

Hello everyone! My project is on time management and getting things done. Most people see me as an efficient, can-do, take-care-of-business person – and, for the most part, I am. However, what they don’t see are the struggles I often face getting started on the days’ tasks, or how difficult I can find it to fight off distraction as the day goes on.  I am a self-employed, solo-practitioner lawyer and can’t afford to succumb to either distraction or procrastination (who can?) so I am always looking for new ways to get the better of those notorious time-wasters.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be exploring ways to navigate past the siren’s call of procrastination and distraction by experimenting with different types of inserts – both diary inserts and to-do lists and ways to use them. I’ll evaluate what works for me and what doesn’t, and report back to you. Hopefully something that I find works for me might work for someone else as well.

For this project I am using a stunning personal sized vintage Belmont Filofax from Janet – who I thank so much for her incredible generosity. The binder is made of warm, saddle-brown Italian Calf Leather– the quality is superb.

Belmont 1
Belmont 2
Belmont 3
This binder is unique to other Filofaxes I’ve owned in that it has a double snap fastener, which allows one to choose whether to stuff or not to stuff! With a choice of two closures, the binder feels just right, whether it is stuffed or lean. And, whichever snap fastener is used, the other remains hidden – I love that attention to detail.

Belmont 4
Belmont 5
The strap itself is also lovely – elegant and simple in the front and wider and more decorative on the back – having just a hint of the equestrian in the styling.  Note that the curve of the stitching pattern and back of the strap is echoed in the curve of the interior card slots. When I turned the binder over for this first time this was a lovely visual surprise and instantly endeared this Filofax to me.

Belmont 6
Belmont 7
The interior is clean and sleek – pockets for cards and a larger pocket in the front and back and two pen loops (Yay).  Note that the curve of the interior card slots echoes the curve on the exterior of the back of the strap and its stitching pattern.  This Filofax is stylish and harmonious throughout.

Bemont 8
Belmont 9
I’ll be starting my project with the following set-up (though I may make modifications as time goes on, based on what I learn):

My Filofax will have 2 main sections – the diary section and the to-do section.  Each week I’ll use a different diary format and evaluate how it works for me.  I’ll also have multiple to-do sections – breaking my tasks down into the level of urgency by day, week, or month, etc. I hope this will help me keep focused on high priority tasks.  I’ve found that if I put everything I need to do on one list it simply becomes overwhelming and I avoid consulting it at all. Not good.

I will also add an overall Project Goals section and a Review section – to target benchmarks and evaluate progress, successes or epic fails.  Finally, I will create a procedure list called “Make it Work” – named after the always fabulous Tim Gunn.  This list will outline my “get to work” procedures designed to help me settle into the workday.

So – that’s the plan. For my next post I’ll go into detail about the sections in the binder and report back on my first few days using this system. I’m excited, curious and a little trepidatious to see how this all unfolds.

10 thoughts

  1. Ahhhh. The Project. I will be one of many looking forward to your posts! Love the ‘siren’s call of procrastination’. The planner is so classy!

  2. Love the review can’t wait to read about the sections…I think A lot of us are looking into different more effective ways to plan and juggle our schedules!!

  3. Great post, lovely photos of this beauty. Looking forward to your top tips on how to get started each day

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