In this modern age of electronics and rapidly advancing technology, you’ll find many options available when it comes time to upgrade your address book and daily planner, even if you should decide to stick with your tried-and-true paper version.
Paper-based planners, contact management software, personal digital assistants (PDAs) and smart mobile phones can all help you get your schedule and contact information organized quickly and effectively.
Don’t keep separate contact books for work, home and other activities. Instead, merge them into one with clearly labeled divisions or categories. You might also decide to color code with small labels to designate personal, professional, or other types of contacts, such as your child’s school or troop leader. Collect all your addresses before entering them. Don’t forget to include community resources, professional associations and co-workers, medical and dental providers, insurance contacts, and other professional and personal business contacts in addition to your personal address book. Check that addresses are current and correct, and update those that aren’t. Be sure to include alternate phone numbers and e-mail addresses where applicable. Devise a system, such as a calendar tickler to remind you of birthday, anniversary, graduation and other and holiday cards. Notate whom you sent them to and when.
Should you choose to update to a PDA or mobile phone for contact organization, those equipped with Blue Tooth technology have the capability of synchronizing with computers if they’re within a few feet of each other. This is a quick and convenient feature that alleviates the worry of cables or ports.
If you decide to continue to use your paper planner, be sure to photocopy important information so you’ll have it at your fingertips should your planner be misplaced or destroyed and you have to recreate it. Try to choose one that allows you to easily add more pages or different types of tools such as a receipt folder, business card organizer or detailed calendar. This way your planner grows with you when events in your life dictate, such as a career change or addition of an activity.