For the love of Filofax

Every Filofax aficionado has a story about their beginnings on their journey. Here goes mine….

I’m not sure when I first came to know about the Filofax. I certainly wasn’t aware that it was around since the 1920’s. But, growing up in the 80’s, meant I got to see important people carrying around a Filofax. Oh what a statement it made! I suppose my fascination only grew when I saw the movie “Taking care of business”. I’m sure every Filofax enthusiast knows that story. Nevertheless, I have always been in love with the concept.

I never had a real Filofax growing up. I did have a mock one in black and a pink cartoon-y one that I got from a Korean store (i still have both). My first proper planner was a Mead Student Planner (personal size) in deep blue. Boy, did I love that planner. Used it for a loooong time. All through college/uni.

Finally, once I started working, I gave it up. Then about two years into my job, I travelled to Malaysia. I walked into the lovely Kinokuniya and simply fell in love all over again with their collection of Filofaxes. I ended up with 2. Both red. One A5 and one mini. I used the A5 for work for a while. But at the time, I was just an assistant manager and didn’t have go on client calls or meetings as much. I did keep a calendar diary but lugging around an A5 was just not something that was comfortable. I started using Moleskins or just any A5 notebook that was fancy.

Toward the beginning of last year, I decided to move back into a planner. To celebrate  my 9th anniversary of working, I decided to splurge on a Louis Vuitton, personal size. I simply loved it. I carried it with me almost everywhere. I have since moved onto Filofaxes. My current one being an Osterly Personal in Plum.

On occasion I have carried an A5 notepad or a notebook to meetings or for quick notes. I’m still going strong with the planners and this is something I am going to stick with. I think it works for me, despite having an iPhone and an iPad. There’s definitely something beautiful about writing things down. But let’s leave that for another post.

I have always loved the concept of a Filofax (no matter the size) and I will never give it up permanently. It’s a love affair to last for a lifetime…..

When Is Nice, Too Nice?

Spending most of my days in a corporate environment has taught me one thing, the world can be a tough place. We are all turning into cynics and there’s no room for just being nice. We spend our days strategizing and forging alliances instead of actually caring and building friendships.

Every now and then we come across a person who is nice and we readily stack him up as either having an ulterior motive or being naïve. Whatever the category, we can’t seem to accept that person is just nice.

Of course, the first category is the most liked. We are all skeptical about a person’s motive if he is being too nice. We readily assume that there must be a reason and of course there will come a time for payback.

While all of this is probably indicative of how we are being moulded and having to scratch to stay alive, I can’t help but think that we are all losing our values in the process.

The other side to the story, is that “good guy’s finish last”. In an environment where we question a person’s motives for being nice, it’s common to believe that a nice person just doesn’t have what it takes to succeed. Being rude and standoffish seems to be all the rave nowadays. Worse still, that seems to be the only kind of behavior that often works with people. People seem to respond to the guy who is unnecessarily rude, just to avoid conflict. It’s a sad sad day, when you realize that the corporate world has become a battlefield and we are not taking any prisoners.

Still, I strive to find a balance between the two extremes and hold on to my values. The question still remains – when is nice, too nice?