Xs, /s, And One Line Scratch Outs: The Importance Of Marking Things As Done | Giftie Etcetera: Xs, /s, And One Line Scratch Outs: The Importance Of Marking Things As Done

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Xs, /s, And One Line Scratch Outs: The Importance Of Marking Things As Done

Writing this post forced me to Google both the plural of the letter X and whether scratch outs was a compound word, a hyphenated word, or a two word phrase. The e-world is apparently seriously divided on both topics. There was angst, animosity, and rage over the suggested answer. (I didn't rage.The e-world did.)

In the end, I went with what was logical to me. So capital X is plural, as is standard for letters - not Xes. (I can't do the apostrophe. I'm not leaving any letters out to replace with an apostrophe. My Loyal Readers are free to disagree.You should note that anyone who disagrees is WRONG, though. :) I will rage if you force me, darn it!) (Does the smiley make my self-righteous comment any better?)

Planner'ds (see what I did there, with the apostrophe clearly representing the e in the past tense word plannered) will probably find similar levels of disagreement with today's blog topic - scratching out tasks, appointments, and days that have been completed. Most people, in my experience, prefer a check box to signify that a task is complete. Or they simply try to remember what they have completed, which in my opinion is a serious waste of a paper planner. To use my planner to its full potential, I prefer scratching out.

Tip: If you do enjoy the check box, consider changing two things. First, draw a circle instead of a box. That takes much less time. Also, consider Xing through the circle instead of checking the circle. It's much easier to glance at, visually, and see what still needs to be done.

The reason that I prefer scratching out tasks (with only one line, so I can still look back and see what I have completed) is because, although it is visually cluttered, the things that are left to do are so starkly clean and orderly that I can't miss them. (See how your eyes jump to the uncrossed out 27th?) Some people prefer Xs, and that is fine, if less efficient. (See, I'm not ragey at all! Just politely suggesting...)

I use a single cross to scratch out weekly page days as they pass. I also use one line to scratch out completed tasks and appointments.

You could just check things off, but not only will the check box (*cough* circle *cough*) take up valuable planner space, but the things that jump out at you won't be limited to things that you actually still have to do.

Bonus tip: if you use a highlighter, instead of highlighting what needs to be done, try highlighting whatever you are crossing out. Then the things that need to be done really pop.

Teacher/Business Tip: I also use yellow fluorescent highlighters to mark originals of documents that I plan to copy (like a handout for students that you want to save and use again next year or copies of a checklist for the end of the month closeout that you recopy every month). Most (not all, so check yours) copy machines don't pick up yellow fluorescent highlighter, so you never accidentally use your original, as it is marked in bright yellow.

Happy scratching!



Gail said...

I like the idea of using a highlighter to scratch off things done! Thanks!

pattygardner.com said...

I have never been one to scratch things out. I like to have a readable record of what I've done. I also don't like check marks or x's although I definitely prefer x's of the two. My favorite method is highlighting what I've done. I've done that for years. Being visual, it makes it really easy to see what I've done and what I have left. I don't even see the highlighted stuff - only what's not highlighted. It works great for me.

Great post. I wish I'd thought of it.