Jun 27, 2007

My Moleskine

So recently I've taken to... starting blocks of text or speech with the word "so" - probably a bad habit; anyways...

So recently I've taken to using a Moleskine notebook again - first casually, just because I needed some way to keep track of bugs, fixes, and to do lists for the mySQL database manager I'm building (TableSettings) and also for the work I'm doing for BASIK, but then I started to read more about it, and there's a lot of stuff online about how to use Moleskines (or really any notebook, but the Moleskine seems to inspire, oddly enough, both organization and creativity) productively, to help organize your life. So here are a couple of my own Moleskine hacks, as they're called.
The first is using an ink or gel pen that you're comfortable with (my pen of choice: the Pilot G-2, a carryover from my debater days. In fact, I once knew a debater who could write on a moving bus with a Pilot G-2 and have it come out like type.). Not much of hack, but it makes writing in the book so much more pleasurable (as if it wasn't already).
The second is to draw a line across the top of the page, about half an inch down, and use that area to "tag" the content on the page - "TableSettings", "New Site Ideas", "Doodles", etc.
Third, I use small boxes that I fill in to mark off to do lists, instead of just drawing a check next to the item - the solid blocks of ink are much easier visually for me than the lines of a checkmark.
Finally, I'm using a system I found somewhere (I lost it, that's why the word "somewhere" isn't a link to it), wherein you have two durable tabs - one marking the next blank page and one marking the last page that you have stuff you need to do on. This way, everything between the tabs needs your attention (kind of like the inbox in the Getting Things Done system) and everything before the tabs is "archived" (a la Gmail). Finally, I have flimsier Post-It tabs of a different color which I use to "star" (also Gmail-esque) items that I might need to refer to later or are interesting - ideas, interesting drawings, and so on.
Oh, and one more thing - when I'm at a computer, I keep my Moleskine open next to me, to my left (because I'm left-handed). This way I can use the mouse and arrow keys with my right hand, and access my notebook with my left hand.
The entire system works pretty well together, but we'll see if I can keep this up. I think the key to organization is possibly to make it fun to be organized and/or to organize, and this may be it for me.

1 comment:

Stephen said...

Great post, it makes me think that perhaps I should learn to use my mouse with my left hand...
Or perhaps we should teach children to use their off-hand when they first learn to use a computer.