Most productive people will tell you that one of their most cherished and important tools is the notebook(s) they use.
This can take many different forms. Some prefer to have one notebook with everything in it. They then can work out of that one notebook to make sure that nothing that they capture falls through the cracks. Others would rather have different notebooks for different settings. This requires more discipline, but can help the user better distinguish contexts.
I personally prefer separate notebooks for work notes and personal notes. I also have a planner in a separate book.
My planner is kept in a Levenger Circa Bomber Jacket Notebook. I print my own calendar pages and punch the holes with the specialized hole punch. I personally prefer a two-page view of my week. It allows me to see the whole week at at glance. The Circa is a quality book that allows ease of moving pages from place to place within the book. It is wonderfully designed and very easy to use. I highly recommend checking out the whole Circa series. They are customizable and versatile. Steve and all of the fine people at Levenger stand behind all of their products and I can guarantee that you will be satisfied with any purchase you make from them.
Recently, I was fortunate to be gifted a Daily Arsenal Kit from Doane Paper by co-author, Michael Ramm. Thanks to Michael, I had previously had some exposure to Chad Doane’s wonderful products. I have not yet found a specific use for every piece of the arsenal, but I am putting several pieces to good use.
I love the Doane notebooks for a couple of reasons.
- The Paper…Chad has developed a unique paper that is a wonderful mash up of lined paper and grid paper. This is huge for me since I have sort of gravitated toward Bill Westerman’s GSD approach to personal productivity. If you read up on GSD, you can see where this type of paper would be priceless.
- The Cover… The Idea Journals are well bound with the best covers I have ever seen for a notebook in its price range. Most notebooks are floppy and can be difficult to write in. Not so with the Doane Idea Journal. The cover is sturdy enough that it holds a flat shape even when used in the lap during a meeting.
I use the large Idea Journal for my work notes. I use the smaller Idea Journal for my personal and spiritual stuff. I also carry one of the Utility Notebooks in my pocket for use as a ubiquitous capture tool.
I recommend that you check out these two vendors and see if any of their offerings might fit your needs.
What kind of notebooks do you use to keep yourself productive?