My bag-of-the-day always holds at least one of these notebooks.
I scribble creative thoughts, for ongoing projects and from random insights, into one notebook. In another I methodically organize life into goals, plans, and endless lists. The last spiral-bound records my memories and listens to whatever feelings tumble out of me.
I used to want to find a way to meld all three notebooks into just one since it would be less to lug around. Practicality, however, never won. When I pick up a specific notebook with pen in hand, I give myself permission to focus on a certain type of thinking: creative, organizational, or reflective.
I like choosing each book for the details of the task ahead. Wide pages for spur-of-the-moment thoughts; narrow lines for compact lists. A variety of colors and page widths to add nonessential flavor. I do gravitate toward spiral-bound. I find it the easiest way to write in any situation, whether you need an improvised writing surface as you curl up on the couch or if you need a shield from the prying eyes of the passenger next to you.
Since I've been tri-notebooking for a while each book's utility and aesthetic embody the quirks of each mode of thinking. I'm free to use sloppy handwriting when ideas bubble up or primly print my everyday lists. I can guard the cursive-scrawled memories with care, but recklessly tear each finished list out of the organization notebook until only two covers and some wire remain. Juggling the notebooks is a little cumbersome and occasionally frustrating, but sometimes life can be that way too.
Do you have a notebook or e-list you use everyday? Do you see your thought processes as modes or something else?