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February 4, 2009 @ 12:10 pm

Getting Myself Organized

organized-cupIn the reading I’ve been doing about strategies for dealing with ADD, I found a list of tips for organization.  Under the heading of “Sticking To A Daily Schedule”, the first item is, “Use a planner or electronic organizer. Instead of hunting for appointments and phone numbers written on scraps of paper, find the right day planner or electronic PDA for you and use it.”

I am the queen of scraps of paper.  Everywhere.  And, of course, I can never find them when I need them.  I’ve tried carrying one of those organizer books in the past (several times), but found I would either leave it at home, not bother to write in it because my handwriting is so bad and my natural inclination is to type as much as possible, or forget to consult it to see what I needed to do.  I don’t have a PDA and can’t afford one, though it’s on my Wish List for Someday.  My cell phone has the standard calendar/organizer in it, but I just don’t have the patience to type on that little keypad.  “8-2-55-33 666-88-8 8-44-33 8-777-2-7777-44” (That should be “Take out the trash”, if I got it right.)

I got to thinking about how I had been considering adding another line and phone to my cell phone plan, for another reason, which I’ll explain in a minute, and it dawned on me that there may be a special offer where I could get a phone with a qwerty keypad for free when adding another line.  I was right!  The special offer was for the Pantech Slate.

The reason I had been considering adding a line was because I bought a USB cable and software for my old phone, primarily for the purpose of being able to charge it while on the computer and make a backup of my phone book, but I also realized that I could use it to connect the computer to the internet.  Since I have an old desktop PC that hadn’t seen the internet in ages and an old, no-longer-portable laptop that I’ve been using an aircard to get online with, it dawned on me that using my cell phone and the USB cable would be a good way to go online from either computer.  And it would be much, much cheaper.  (It turns out that the software only works with Windows XP or newer and my laptop has Windows 2000, but that’s ok, because it’s really on its last legs and it’s time to phase out using it so much anyway.  Some day, I’ll get another laptop and it will have Windows XP or newer, and I’ll be able to use the cell phone for either one then.)  Another benefit to having the cell phone connection is that I can use it at work whenever our out-more-than-it-works DSL connection is down.  Several of the things I do at work require a working internet connection.

I compared the cost of having an additional line and adding the unlimited data transfer package to my account with the amount I’ve been paying for the aircard, and I can save over $30 a month and have a phone with a qwerty keypad to keep track of my tasks and notes.

pantech_c530_black_l1

So I ordered it, and it came in, and I really like it.  One drawback, though, was that it has a calendar and notes function but no “tasks” function, like my other phone has.  The good news is that I found Remember The Milk, an online task manager for to-do items, and was able to set up the mobile version on the phone.  This is even better than the phone having its own tasks lists because I can update my list from a computer as well.

Now, of course, comes the part where I have to be diligent enough to use my to-do list and to update it regularly.  I find I’m ok at sitting down and making lists and figuring out how to do things, but I get lost in the transition between thinking and doing (I’ve joked for years that I’m perfectly content to just live in my head, and now I understand why that is).  This is where I need to establish new habits and learn to remind myself not to get so caught up in the over-thinking of a task that I never actually start it.

More on that in my next post. . .

One Comment

  1. Comment by davidrochester:

    I think being proactive like this is great — even if it takes you a while to figure out how to implement the plan, you’re moving in an excellent direction, and taking responsibility and control. Three cheers!

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