Monday, September 24, 2012

Do you know where your addresses are??

I used to be really organized with my addresses and contacts: they all went in my A5 Filofax, in the A-Z tabbed section. That was my master addresses list, the one where I kept the contact details of everyone I know.

But during the past several months while preparing to move, actually moving, living in temporary accommodation for 2 months, in our house for a few weeks without furniture, then swimming in boxes after our shipment arrived, I haven't been so organized. My big Filofax was in a box somewhere, the address pages removed and stuck into my carry-on bag. I couldn't be bothered to track down my bag every time I needed to write a new password or address, so I just wrote them into whatever book was in front of me at that moment. Since I use several planners and notebooks, my addresses quickly became scattered.

I thought I was the only one having this issue until recently a Twitter friend admitted she doesn't have a central location for all of her addresses and, "It's a problem."

Do you keep all of your addresses in one central location, whether electronically or on paper? Or like me do you have addresses, passwords and contacts in multiple locations?


  1. Whilst I do have contacts in my Filofax, I found this to be difficult to track. People change mobile phone providers more often, thereby changing numbers. My address section became confusing! I use a Windows mobile and that updates changes people make to contact details automatically. The few who are not updated this way I simply do manually. As I have a computer back up plan, my contacts are always safe and available. Paper based systems are increasingly difficult to maintain. People move around frequently nowadays and so for me, electronic systems are more convenient.

  2. I am very old fashioned and have an address book! Actually I have several because I always keep the old ones, even if the people in them are no longer in my life, they are a bit like a diary - a memento of an earlier life.

    Phone numbers are all on my mobile and important and regularly used numbers are typed out in the front of the House Manual.

    I handwrite all my Christmas card envelopes and am quite saddened by the increasing number that arrive each year with a computer printed label. Perhaps I belong in the Ark!

  3. I have everything in the Palm Pilot now but I am having trouble trusting! Am visual and tactile. Predicting a fail. Have a rolodex for hubby, the Palm for me, and a scribble book to capture everything that needs to go permanently in either. The scribble book really works, no matter what other system I am using for contacts or planning.

  4. Oh dear - just posted a long reply and lost it! Oh well here we go again. I'm like Tim, I have mine in Outlook and they are backed up to within an inch of their life - this is then synced to my phone.

    Work contacts are mostly in as well, except short contracts, but they are in my email archive and I can access them. Should really put them in outlook under a separate category?

    Passwords is a problem. I have an A-Z book which I am frightened to take out in case I loose it, or someone picks it up. Likewise if I put them in the phone how safe are they? Would like to know what others do with passwords.

  5. I keep two copies, a rather messy one in my filofax (which is where new entries typically go) and a perfectly alphabetized giant rolodex on my hall telephone table. A few times a year I page through my filo and make sure everything is in the rolodex and up to date.

    I also keep work telephone numbers in a rolodex on my desk at work. Twice per year a new phone list is published and I will do a quick update of any changes and/or new entries. I also capture any known mobile or home phone numbers here. The most essential work contacts are also in my filofax and my home rolodex, but most people are only in the work one. Many colleagues rely on the web directory for work contacts but I've had a couple of instances where the reason I needed to make a call was that the web server was down. I'm pretty much the only person who's keeping a paper system.

    I find the trend of computer printed address labels for personal correspondence to be tacky and cheap. I was particularly appalled last winter when I received what are essentially outsourced holiday cards, the friend/relative had clearly sent a file of their contacts to some company who printed, addressed, and mailed the cards. Cute, but misses the point of the holiday card completely.

  6. Mine are all in my FC Compact. My address section is looking pretty ratty since I've had the same one for about 15 years. It's time to get a new one but it's just too much work right now!

  7. I keep all my contacts in Outlook synched with my smartphone. Once a year I use Outlook's handy address book printing template to print a very compact, pocket-size address book that I keep on my writing desk (often, it's still faster than using Outlook or the phone app). It ends up getting a few scribbles from updates, but not a lot. Then a year later, I just print a new one and throw the old one away.

    Oddly enough, I still use an old-fashioned address book with index tabs to write my passwords in. Easy to find, alpha-sorted. I like the old-fashionedness of the book, given that all the passwords are tech-related!

  8. I have typed up in Word an alphabetical list of:

    -Friends and family with addresses, all phone numbers, favorite colors, their dog's name, how much I sent their son for graduation, etc.
    -"Handyman's" name & number under "H", "Printer Cartridge Number" under "P", "Tuna Casserole-Last Time We Had" under "T" (Yes, my husband & I argue how long it's been since we last had tuna casserole--He loves it, I hate it...)
    -Passwords for "Walgreen's Photo Shop Password" under "W" ,"Credit Union Password" under "C" (all in code, of course)

    Changes are kept in my purse personal Filofax on a sheet entitled "Address Changes to Make" which I then do every Wednesday morning. Every start of a new season, I print off the list, punch it, put it in an A5 Filofax on my desk at home for a handy reference. The file is backed up three places-On my main computer, on a flash drive, and also saved each Wednesday morning to my Palm Pilot (which I carry with me).

    I also have a handy list called "Christmas Card List" to make LABELS (the post office thanks me for not having to read my writing) at Christmas time. The list contains names, addresses and phone numbers of close friends and family that I can jot a note to, put an address into the GPS, or call for bail money--HA! This list is reduced and stays in my personal Malden Filofax in my purse for quick reference.

    This sounds a little OCD, but really, it is simple. In the beginning, I just started slowly making the alpha list in Word until it was done. Each week I update it--surprisingly, there usually is something to update each week.

  9. All of my addresses are in my Google account, so they are backed up in the cloud automatically. However, I have issues with a lack of synchronisation between phone (which is actually where I tend to access=s them most often), outlook (which I have used from time to time) and Google, which is now my main email client.

    I *know* I need to sort this out, as contacts are among the most important personal data I have, so thank you for your post, it's given me motivation to get on and do that. My suspicion is that they'll all end up in my Filofax (or TM if I decide over the next week that I'm going with that system for 2013) because I have an innate distrust of electronic systems, having lost too much data over the years to those media.

  10. I have a good old fashioned address book and haven't really found anything better. I do have frequent contacts on my phone as well.

  11. All of my addresses are in my iPhone, backed up to my iTunes account, in case the phone is lost/stolen/destroyed. Except for one.... my sister's! Hers changes so frequently, and I like keeping a list of where all she has lived, so I store it in my Trinote. :) (Love you, Sis!)

  12. I have a section in my Filo for addresses and phone numbers, and I keep it up to date with what I call, for lack of a better term, important people. Basically the permanent people in my life. If it's just a phone number of an acquaintance or doctors office, it goes in my phone.

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  14. Address books never worked for me. I would have several of them floating around and they all seemed to be out of date with the information I needed at the time. Along came Google and their contact list and I have been electronic ever since. It's a huge plus that I can sync other sources with Google or export as needed. But nothing beats being able to sync your phone with your Google account and not having to worry if you wrote down Sally's number from the last phone you had.