I use too many notebooks


I have too many notebooks.

Rather, I use too many notebooks on a regular basis, such that I don't feel I can discard or remove any from the rotation. I also feel this is a problem, given how much paper I carry around with me pretty much everywhere.

Of those nine journals in the picture above, I use a minimum of six daily, usually all of them.

They are, left to right, top row:

  • My day summary journal, where I keep a daily record of the day, limited to a sentence or two.
  • My memorization journal, where I keep the current work I am memorizing written down, and copy it frequently to memorize it.
  • My long term journal, where I track my progress on long term goals. This one is a day planner, and is new, a gift from Carol.
  • My Scalzi Story brainstorming journal, where I write down 5 plot ideas for each of the Band Names
  • My health journal, where I write everything I consume, spend, make, and exert, along with other health related notes.

Bottom row:

  • My daily TODO list, where I write down my morning-triage items to complete for the day. This book makes focussing on the day easier than the 6" of yellow index cards I have.
  • My 11:11 / 20:14 journal, where I write down what I'm doing at 11:11 am and 8:14 pm every day. Last year, it was 8:13pm, for the obvious reason.
  • My three questions journal, where I answer three of my personal-reflections questions each night, to see how I feel about the day, how I feel about what I've done, and my progress.
  • My everything journal, where I write down notes, ideas, lists, sketches, plans, schedules, recipes, and anything else that comes to mind that I might want to keep around. Nothing work related in this journal.

Not show is a green notebook that is my work journal.

I'm unsure how to merge these into fewer books. The longterm, reflections, 11:11 and day summary books aren't used nominally until the end of the day. The TODO and work journals are used constantly during the day. They are used up in different rates. I blow through the work journals and health-tracking journals rapidly.

I like paper, so switching to an Evernote or digital solution isn't in the foreseeable future for me.

I should reconsider this. Each one fulfills a need I have. Maybe I don't really have too many notebooks.