Hi everybody, I have been thinking about why I often forget to check my tickler file. Putting a note on my desk and other reminders to check my tickler didn't work, although the tickler was close by, just a chair swirl away. My desk is just the right size for everything else that I need to work except the tickler (an Everyday Sorter). I thought if the tickler resided on the desk and was right in front of me I'd check it each morning. I didn't want a bigger desk, I wanted a tickler that would fit but I'd still have room to spread work out. And I wanted something easy to carry with me (I don't always work at my desk).
I thought about an index box with card dividers, that I read about somewhere. But I like the idea of folders for holding things that need to get moved around.
So I'm trying out this tickler file: I made 43 3" x 5" folders. These are regular folders I cut down to size with a Rototrim. One folder makes two 3x5 folders. (I saved the discards for notes and bookmarks). I know Levenger sells this size and everything I've bought from them has been good quality, but theirs were too costly for this project, especially as my trial version.
Each monthly folder has a label I printed with my labeller and inserted in an Avery 1" plastic stick on label. The monthly labels are staggered with no overlap so they do not add bulk. There is a gap in the middle of the rows of monthly labels so I can put a rubber band around the whole tickler file. This allows the tickler to stand up on my desk. (I would not recommend just a rubber band for transport though, it might break). I decided not to put plastic labels on the daily folders, it seemed too cumbersome in such a very small space, and having labels just on the months make them stand out well so the right month is easy to find (and it's also easy to target the back of the daily folders when moving the front folder).
Each daily folder has a number label on the upper right front. I can hold the entire tickler file in my hands and flip through it with my thumb to find a particular day.
With this tickler, things much larger than 3 x 5 are not going to fit. Most of my tickler items are on index cards or little notes but some items are too big. So I made a letter-size folder called "Tickler File Items", that I keep handy (it's with my Waiting for, Someday/Maybe folders, etc.) Right now it just has a couple of birthday cards (with corresponding notes in the tickler file when to send), and some envelopes for various charities (I have a monthly charity list that stays in the tickler file). If it looks like I need more room for large tickler items, I'm thinking I can add more folders, maybe monthly ones. That's my concern right now -- is it worth it to have the large tickler items separate from the tickler file? I guess I'll find out!
So anyway I thought I'd try it out. I put a tickler note for a month from now to report back here on the forum how this little tickler file is working out and if it's encouraged me to use a tickler file consistently. So if you don't hear back from me in a month ... well that will be an answer in itself