Have you been flirting with the idea of switching to a digital calendar? I recently made the switch and I have found 10, yes 10, super easy time saving features built in to a digital calendar that you just can’t get in a paper calendar. After decades of being a diehard fan of paper planners, I now swear by my digital calendar.
I chose Google Calendar because it it easy to use, readily available, backed up in the cloud and it syncs easily with my blackberry. It is also free! There is plenty of room for notes and every entry is searchable so you can find the info you need in seconds! No more messy cross outs, pencil erasures and no more scribbled notes in the margins.
Check out these 10 time saving features of Google Calendar and then decide if making the switch is right for you.
1. Repeat an Event – with Google Calendar you can enter the information into your calendar once and have it repeat ad infinitum. So for example, say your child has soccer practice on Thursday’s at 4 for the next 12 weeks, you just need to enter that once and set it to repeat weekly on Thursday’s. Voila! Using a business example, if you have a weekly sales meeting you can enter that once and it will repeat ad infinitum. With a paper calendar you would need to write this in every time which can be tedious and very time consuming.
2. Duplicate an Event – Similar to repeating an event, this is real time saving feature. Rather than entering in the info again, you simply click a button, change the date to quickly duplicate an event. I have found this to be particularly helpful when I’ve made a lot of notes in the entry that I want available for the next meeting.
3. Share Your Calendar – You can share your schedule with your team, your co-workers, your family, your friends – whoever needs to know your schedule. Once you are all on the same page, it makes coordinating schedules a breeze. You can even invite other people to events on your calendar!
4. Quickly Find the Info You Need – I use this feature a lot. Unlike a paper calendar where you need to thumb through pages and pages of info to find what you are looking for, simply type in a search term and every instance will pop up. It’s a great way to retrieve info you’ve put in the notes like phone numbers or addresses or even find out how many meetings you’ve had with someone.
5. Color Code for Clarity – No more highlighters or different color pens and pencils. With one click you can color code all the events in a series, make your client meetings blue, your social events green and your kids school events purple. Whatever works for you.
6. Set Reminders – You can receive reminders via email and/or have them pop up on your screen. You’ll never forget an appointment again! Can’t get that with a paper calendar.
7. Sync with Your Smartphone – Your calendar is compact and easily accessible at all times right on your phone. It’s more compact and less cumbersome than having to carry a paper planner as well.
8. Access Anywhere – It’s backed up in the Cloud – Similar to email which you can access virtually anywhere, Google Calendar is also backed up in the cloud which means you can’t lose and it is always accessible. Oh, and no worries, even if you do not have Internet access, you will still have access to an offline, read only version of your calendar.
9. Capture Your Tasks – If you are used to capturing your tasks and to do items on your paper calendar, no worries. Google Calendar has a side task bar where you can enter items, check them off, archive or delete them.
10. See the Big Picture – With Google Calendar you can quickly switch from a daily to a weekly to a monthly view of your calendar. You can also add the weather, international or religious calendars, sports schedules, and many other features to customize your calendar.
Have you made the switch to a digital planner? Leave a comment below and let us know your thoughts!