With all the planner and page inserts available today, it’s getting more and more difficult to avoid the temptation of something new and change your setup midway–or several times!–throughout the year. I’ve fallen victim to this many times in the last couple years so I had to come up with a way to maintain something constant thru all the changes in order to avoid losing valuable information. This ‘constant’ is my one critical tool for storing vital information captured throughout the year: a monthly index.

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So many wonderful choices!

A monthly index is essentially a log that lists an important event, appoinment, or note of something that happened on a specific day throughout the month. For example: a doctor appointment, an order# of something purchased, the day an appliance was serviced, or when something was shipped and received in the mail. My monthly list is organized top-to-bottom with the specific day of the month appearing on its own line in the format:

8/28: J’s yrly dr appt

8/29: refund posted to Visa; a/c unit svcd

8/30: Amazon O# 12345

Next to the day is an abbreviated note, written using my color code (4 colors, one for each member of the family, one color for all the pets, and red to highlight anything important). A quick scan of the monthly index enables me to find a specific entry.

Color code, monthly index, planners
Color coded monthly index (blurred to protect sensitive information)
color code, monthly index, planners, personal size, 6-ring
Color coded monthly index in a personal size 6-ring planner
color code, monthly index, erin condren, planner
Color coded monthly index in a larger, coil bound planner

Over the years, I’ve had to refer back to my monthly index pages to determine when something occurred or how something progressed. If I need more details–for example who I spoke to and any related information–then I’ll just turn to the daily or weekly pages and refer to the notes on that page.

A monthly index is the one thing I’ve found I can rely on amidst all the planner and insert changing madness. What about you? Do you have a tool to help you through all the transitions made during the year that helps you keep track of important information? If so, please share in the comments below!