I remember when I backpacked alone around the world in my early twenties, my address book was my most valuable possession. It held all the contact details for my loved ones back home – to send postcards and letters to, to be contacted in case of emergency. It also held names and addresses of all the new friends I made along the way (one of the advantages of traveling alone is that you interact more with other people).
Later that address book got too full and so many of the contact details were not accurate anymore. There were so many scribbles that it was barely legible. So I bought a new one and undertook the huge task of checking and transcribing all my addresses. When I still used chequebooks I always marvelled that they were better than a diary for memories and taking me back to times in my life. But the address book was even more so. Names of old friends brought back fond memories and reminded me to get in touch again. Changing names and addresses of friends as they married and/or divorced, children leaving the nest and getting their own address and phone number. The first time you wrote down the name of someone who would become special and a dear loved one.
Those kinds of address books are largely defunct now. Electronic devices hold or can search for addresses and telephone numbers. They link to everything from our email to our Facebook accounts.
Yet Filofaxes still come with A – Z dividers and telephone and address sheets. For those who do not use them for names and addresses, what do you do with them?
I use mine in several ways:
- My work involves a lot of client contact and dealing with a great deal of information. Because of this I use A – Z dividers to alphabetically file client contact details, needs analyses and to do lists for each client. I also file notes of what I do with each client each time I meet them.
- In one of my unused Filofaxes I use A – Z dividers to record account numbers, passwords, usernames and any other sensitive information I absolutely need to remember. This I keep locked away in a very safe place
- I have one Filofax for lists – books I have read/want to read, things I want to buy – all alphabetically recorded in separate sections.