Random Thoughts on Calendars

I have a few friends who work traditional 9 to 5 style jobs. This is not to say that their hours are precisely 9 to 5, but that they basically show up early to work Monday through Friday, have their evenings and weekends free, and that is all they do. The life of a freelance musician is…somewhat different.

Not to say that many other people don’t have flexible schedules (and I should clarify that this generally means I have to be flexible to the client rather than the other way around lest you get too jealous) but that most seem to work more “traditional” hours.  A colleague the other day pointed out how “boring” it must be to have all your evenings and weekends free and constantly being in search of entertainment to quell the boredom. I’m not sure that’s the case (though thank goodness, as your search for entertainment helps make my chosen profession possible!), but what I really wanted to write about was my calendar.

As a freelancer, one of the most sacred pieces of information at my disposal is my calendar. With smart phones and online calendars, life has been greatly simplified. Before online calendars, of course, we all had to carry our calendars around and handwrite everything.  What a pain!

Lately I’ve seen a few bloggers saying they are going back to traditional style calendars for various reasons. I say, probably they aren’t freelancers trying to limit their load of what to carry (phone is already with you, why add another book, especially when you already have a bag of music, a music stand, and an instrument) or accepting a lot of email invitations to events (it’s SO easy to add events from an email directly into your google calendar!). Maybe that’s what got me thinking about my calendar. While I’m sure there are some freelancers who still write their schedules by hand, I am simply not one of them. To me that would be like consulting an atlas to figure out my route somewhere rather than finding out online.

So enlighten me, readers. What do you use to keep your schedule straight? Do those of you with “real jobs” even NEED a calendar? I suppose you still probably have meetings and appointments—do you obsess over it just like we freelancers do?

8 thoughts on “Random Thoughts on Calendars”

  1. I’m a real calendar person. Starting in 6th grade, my school made us all write our assignments in our paper planners that they provided and I’ve had one ever since. I feel lost without it. Also, this is probably a sign of how not tech-savvy I am, but my phone has deleted stuff in my google calendar.

    1. I was thinking of your beautiful purple calendar as I was writing some of this. I haven’t had trouble with google deleting anything…TO MY KNOWLEDGE, at least.

  2. I’m a regular calendar person…although I’m not super good with that either. I mostly just remember what I got to do and when I’ve got to do it. And I’m not a 9-5 person either…although my schedule mostly stays the same…Thurs/Fri/Sat 7p-7a. I’ve gotten better at actually USING a schedule since I started grad school in January, but I’m still more of a big picture person and do not derive pleasure or a sense of satisfaction from crossing things off a list.

    1. That’s an interesting statement–“big picture person”. I am one of those who gets a little pleasure from crossing things off a list, but not to the extent that others I know do. I hadn’t thought about it like that before!

  3. I have traditional work hours and keep an Outlook calendar for that. But I’m also a wife, a mom, a busy volunteer, and a violin student. We keep a white board calendar and everything goes on it – dentist appointments, meetings, events, school schedules (if half days, field trips, etc.), baseball practice, hubby’s work schedule (he’s a swing shifter), maintenance visits (pest control, cars, lawn service), and all that jazz. Without the family calendar, we would be drifting in a fog trying to remember where we were supposed to be. Trust me, once you pay enough missed appointment fees at your kids’ allergist, you learn to make sure there’s a way for everyone to remember. it.
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    1. Definitely true! I think people with kids have to be extra organized to keep on top of everything.

  4. As much as I use any calendar, I use the one on my phone that’s synced to Google calendars. That said, it’s pretty rare for me to actually consult it. Actually, the only calendar in my classroom is the one we use to keep track of the date, and we only add each day as we get there, so to figure out what day a future date falls on, I either have to do math or grab the calendar on my phone.
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