the clipboard: the many uses for this overlooked tool

clipboardA couple of years ago, I “rediscovered” the clipboard. I found it in my old box of college junk. I don’t think I ever really used it in college, but I thought I would give it a second chance. I put it in my computer desk, and it just sat there unnoticed for another year. All of a sudden I found myself working a part-time job (in addition to my day-job of raising three young children), starting a MOMS Club, and creating a business from scratch. One day, I just picked it up when I needed to carry something around to make notes. That was the day my clipboard became my most indispensable tool.

Currently my clipboard contains the stuff of my life: my Menu Planner for October, my Menu Planner for September (for reference), my Weekly Planner for this week, my Weekly Planner for next week, my Halloween Party Planner for the get-together we are having at the end of the month, my notes on what I want to include on the agenda for my MOMS Club board meeting, a list of recommended books for the book club, an itinerary for last week’s houseguests, my Monthly Cleaning Schedule, a list of articles I’m planning to write, articles I’m editing for submission, and this article which I prefer to write freehand and then type into the computer later.

A clipboard doesn’t require holes to be punched in the paper it holds. Pages and notes can quickly and easily be added or removed. It is portable, sturdy, comes in a variety of colors, and has a handy spot for my pen when it is time to get to sleep. A clipboard allows my inner preschooler to manipulate pen and paper. I may go where electricity may not be found and give my eyes a rest from the bright lights of a computer screen. Surely a woman who needed to prepare her daughter’s birthday party between doing several loads of laundry and bathing her children was the original creator of the clipboard. Maybe she had a letter to her Kindergartener’s teacher to write while her 3-year-old played on the playground. It is highly likely that she had grocery lists, to-do lists, and Christmas card lists to compile while waiting in the Dentist’s office. That woman knew she needed a firm, dry (non-sticky) place to write that she could carry with her as she went from one task to the next. Mrs. Clipboard, I thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Jennifer Tankersley is the creator of ListPlanIt where you can find more than 500 printable lists, checklists, and planning pages to tote around on your clipboard and put your world in order.


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