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Going Digital With My Calendar Changed Everything

12/30/2015 01:06 EST | Updated 12/30/2016 05:12 EST
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USA, Illinois, Metamora, Close-up of woman using calendar on digital tablet

Call me crazy but the thought of losing my paper agenda has literally woken me up in the middle of the night. How will I know what I have to do the next day? Which client am I supposed to see? What time should I be there? The fact that I had so much valuable information in one irreplaceable place had to stop. I couldn't take it anymore -- I had to go digital.

I have long been made fun of because of my reluctance move away from a paper agenda and onto a digital one. Family, friends and clients want to make plans and I would have to say, "Wait, let me go grab my agenda." I would open it up and there would be scribbled notes everywhere (I have terrible handwriting) and differently coloured Post-It notes bursting from the pages.

Every night my husband would ask what my plan was for the next day, or if we had something going on that weekend. Every time I would have to get up, locate my purse and find my agenda. In the grand scheme of things it wasn't that big a deal, but life is only getting busier and I knew something had to change.

When I voiced how reluctant I was to get rid of my beloved paper agenda people would suggest making a digital copy. Write down everything online AND in the agenda. I had visions of me going back and forth, computer to paper -- did I write that down properly? Did I put that in the computer? Wait, let me check again just to be sure.

Ugh. That was not going to be my solution. I had to be all-in. I had to dive into the digital world and not look back. So I did.

I didn't plan it but I found myself with a few hours one afternoon and I decided to bite the bullet. I opened up Google Calendar on my computer, downloaded the app onto my phone and got started.

Day by day, week by week, I began to transcribe what was once on paper onto the computer. I was able to assign different colours to different categories (orange for organizing, purple for personal, green for financial stuff).

This was fun -- I love to colour code! I could even add notifications to remind me of events! Then I realized I could start organizing my next year -- the paper agenda I had (that I bought because it was pretty) ended in December 2015, but online I can go on forever! I felt unstoppable. Our Mexico vacation in January, spring break, end of the school year -- all of it was now in my calendar.

AMAZING.

I called my husband and told him what I had done. I invited him to the calendar and told him under no circumstances was he to sync his work calendar with mine (he has way too many meetings that I don't care about). All of the sudden it was 4 p.m. and I had to go pick up the kids.

My agenda was on my desk where I had been transferring all the info into the computer. As per my routine, I went to grab it and throw it in my purse before I left the house. Not this time. I don't need it. It's all on my phone (which, let's face it, in this digital age goes EVERYWHERE with me).

So, I put my paper agenda in a drawer and headed out. I wish I could tell you it was easy. It wasn't. The first few days post-conversion I had that naked feeling -- you know, the one when you think you're forgetting something important? I kept reaching into my purse for it. But like any routine it just took a few days of conditioning and remembering (and some breathing exercises) to retrain my brain.

I am proud to say that I am now two months post-transfer and couldn't be happier. I love having my schedule at my fingertips. I love that it's backed up. I love that it syncs with my Google Maps and sends me these cute little dings about what time I should leave to get to my appointment on time.

I never thought I would -- never thought I COULD -- but I did it. I made the switch, and if I can do it, trust me, you can do it, too. I'm not big on resolutions, but this one had been on my to-do list for a few years now.

Maybe it's not "going digital" that you need to tackle. Maybe there has been another item that has haunted you for a while. I know it's easier to keep putting it off (I certainly did) but chances are once it's done and you've crossed it off your mental list, you won't regret it!

Good Luck & Happy (digital) Organizing!

Do you have an organizing question? Contact me and I may feature it in an upcoming post!

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