During a recent Aphasia Cafe chat, we had a moment of perfect confusion. We’re calling it “perfect confusion” because the miscommunication yielded an amazing conversation and sharing of ideas.

What I Meant

I posed a question to the group: how do you mark time on your calendar? Which dates do you use to mark moments in your year? What I meant were important-to-you events, such as birthdays and anniversaries. Also, I wanted to hear if people marked other dates, such as a stroke anniversary or the date of a diagnosis. During the discussion, we learned that 89% of the chat participants marked these life-changing events. Only 11% said they didn’t think about it at all.

What Most People Understood

People answered how they literally keep track of time. How do they remember important appointments, daily activities, or other people’s birthdays? We ended up with tips and tricks to mark time and keep track of things.

Three-Month Window

Plan ahead for important dates with a three-month calendar. Family and friend birthdays. —Ed C


67% of the chat participants agreed that three months was optimal. 26% only looked one month ahead (and 8% didn’t plot out the future at all). Three months gave just enough of a window into the future without needing to cross out plans by planning too far ahead. Three months was less overwhelming to consider than seeing the whole year at once.

Use Apps

I mark my important dates on an app called Task. It sends me reminders. —James M


People listed various apps they use to track dates and set reminders. Most phones come with a pre-installed reminder app, but the app store also contains multiple organizational apps that allow you to set alarms to go off throughout the day to remind you of important events. 50% of the chat participants used an app to remind them of certain dates or events.

Common Areas

I have a big calendar on my refrigerator. I note all my PT, OT, and speech appointments and workouts with my trainer. Important dates are all steps in my recovery! —Mac B


Calendars aren’t helpful if you never look at them. Keeping paper calendars in central areas ensures that you’re constantly reminded of important dates.

Review the Night Before

I set this on my calendar, as my calendar is reviewed every night the day before. I also have reminders that start an hour before the meeting. —Sean M


Sean gave a great tip to review the next day before bed. Not only do you go to sleep knowing what to expect the next day, but you have a better sense of whether you need to hurry out of bed in the morning, or whether you can take a little extra time.


How do YOU track time?


Photo by Andrik Langfield on Unsplash