Remembering your shifts

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Remembering your shifts

Postby VultureChow » Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:54 pm

So...

I signed up for a couple of volunteer shifts this year outside of just camp activities. I'm so used to depending on my phone now for remembering appointments, that I'm a bit concerned about missing a shift. Anyone have any brilliant ideas or methods they use to be in the right place at the right time? Everything is printed out and I'll have a watch, but without some audible reminder I'm worried that I'll lose track of time while doing whatever just distracted me out on the playa.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby Meat Hunter » Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:19 pm

Since I do not have one of those magic phone, I still use a paper calendar in my default life; which I have recorded my volunteer commitments and which I will be bringing it with me.

Other than a paper calendar, I am fresh out of reasonable offerings.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby Ano » Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:26 pm

A watch and a heavy dose of discipline. It's very easy to lose track of time out there. Within two hours of one of my shifts, I head back to camp, and make every effort to skip out on that shiny thing over there. Once I'm in camp, I immediately get ready for my shift, and then I immediately head to where I need to be... I'm there an hour or more early, but I'll usually just hang out with other people until I'm ready. I also make an effort to schedule my shifts at the same time each day, so that I know that X time is the time to work... although this year I threw that out the window and work all over the fucking place. Whoops.

Also, I make a distinct effort to never "go out" in the clothes I wear for my shift (we kinda have a uniform), so that my subconscious brain knows that it's time for business when I'm wearing the Kilt with the Vest.

I know someone who kept their phone on airplane mode/no data, turned it all the way up, and set a few alarms for an hour before their shift, and then carried it around while also using it as a camera for random points of the day.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby bigbluedoggy » Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:39 pm

I usually take on 7 or so volunteer shifts between Greeters and Cafe. I try to plan my day around these windows and make sure to be back in camp in plenty of time to get ready and allow time to make it on time if not early. It helps that most of my shifts are first thing in the morning and I set an alarm in my tent.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby Ratty » Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:42 pm

Bring a watch. Hook it to your pack. For writing things down I use a sharpie and a tyvek envelope from fedex or USPS. It won't rip. It will be there wadded up in your pack. If you don't cut it up it can double as a moop bag. Turn it it inside out to get a big, blank surface. Bring a couple of ultra fine point sharpies.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby Savannah » Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:54 pm

I'm low-tech about it. I make a Word document with every day I'll be there listed. It lists all known shifts and other must-attend things, plus some white space. I print a second document for the addresses of friends and events that simply might be fun. (I don't like to have Needs and Wants on the same list.)

I fold each document in half and use a binder clip to keep em shut, and these never leave the Day Bag. (I actually use the Day Bag even at night if I have a shift, because it can hold more supplies).

I also keep a travel alarm clock in my tent (which is also useful for napping without sleeping the night away) and a pocket watch with a caribeener clip on my bag.

Like Ratty, I use fine-tip sharpies for writing out there. Ballpoint fails quickly.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby Rice » Thu Jul 17, 2014 5:06 pm

I work 1-2 shifts per day, every day I am on the playa. I have a watch, and an alarm clock. I write down every shift on a notepad that I carry in my backpack. Every day after my shift, I check to make sure i have the next shift time correct. I use the alarm to remind me 2 hours before my shift. Since my shifts could happen at 6am, noon, 6pm or midnight - I have to know what is next. Since adapting that method, I have forgotten about any shifts.

I have a "Shift Backpack" with everything I could need on a shift pre-packed. (meds, water, coconut juice, snacks, warmer clothing, flashlight & spare batteries, etc.) I make sure to restock everything after each shift. So, when I need to go on-shift I grab & go. Yes, I move the notebook from my walk-around backpack to my shift backpack.

It really sucks to be ready & willing to work and then finding out that other people have flaked out and missed their shift. It got so bad that my dept now has sanctions against you when you miss shifts. So, don't be one of "those people"...

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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby VultureChow » Thu Jul 17, 2014 5:08 pm

I'm probably so paranoid about this I'll show up hours early!

All good suggestions. Two of them are early morning, so double alarms for me there should work well enough.

I was thinking of like a digital keychain that can give an alarm for appointments.

Or perhaps I can use the sharpies on my arm to remember...

I've never missed something I was supposed to do in camp, so I'm probably overthinking this, but Rice, I also love the idea of a shift backpack so I can just grab and go.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby Rice » Thu Jul 17, 2014 5:14 pm

VultureChow wrote:I'm probably so paranoid about this I'll show up hours early!

All good suggestions. Two of them are early morning, so double alarms for me there should work well enough.

I was thinking of like a digital keychain that can give an alarm for appointments.

Or perhaps I can use the sharpies on my arm to remember...

I've never missed something I was supposed to do in camp, so I'm probably overthinking this, but Rice, I also love the idea of a shift backpack so I can just grab and go.

Thanks.

It can keep me going for over 12 hours. I have been stranded out on-shift for hours with no stress as a result.

I set 2 alarms for the noon, 6pm shifts, and 4 alarms for the 6am and midnight shifts - I am more likely to be out cold in the early evening or morning. (in 2010 I kept missing the stupid bus due to one alarm, it would wake me up as it was going by. I never missed a shift, but was late more than 0 times.)
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby BoyScoutGirl » Thu Jul 17, 2014 6:34 pm

Neither of these suggestions will help VultureChow now, but may help others in the future:

- All of my volunteer shifts are at the same time each day. So when it nears roughly "that time" of day, I impulsively start glancing at my watch to gauge when to head to work.

- There are plenty of volunteer opportunities that don't need to be signed up for in advance. Lamplighters and Recycle Camp come to mind, but Playa Info has a whole list of options on any given day.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby Elorrum » Thu Jul 17, 2014 6:51 pm

VultureChow wrote:I was thinking of like a digital keychain that can give an alarm for appointments.

there are also little timers, counting down to alarm, for pill reminders, or cooking, or keychain alarm clocks. cheapo digital watch with alarm as well.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby bluemiragemi » Fri Jul 18, 2014 8:55 am

I bought a cheap hot pink watch and I plan to print out my google calendar before leaving. Good question!
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby Elderberry » Fri Jul 18, 2014 9:41 pm

I use my phone.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby trilobyte » Sat Jul 19, 2014 9:44 pm

I use my phone too. Switch it to airplane mode (if your device has it) and quit all the other apps you may have running. Most modern devices should get great battery life if the radios are off. Keep it powered completely off on the days you don't need it, power it on for the days/nights you need to worry about the alarm. Then for added measure, let a campmate know that you know is also trying to be mindful of schedules. Buddy systems can be helpful in those situations.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby robbidobbs » Mon Jul 21, 2014 2:54 pm

Word. I'm switching to cheap but reliable phone for event. Keep it on airplane mode.
I only need to wake up, as I don't go off shift until dusk anyway.
I like the fedex bag & sharpie idea for those whose schedule changes.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby demeter » Tue Aug 05, 2014 6:30 am

I'm using my FitBit! You can set it to have vibrating reminders at specific times. I'm going to set it to go off with enough time for me to return to camp and get ready for my shift. That way, I'll get the reminder on my wrist without relying on clocks and cell phones.
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Re: Remembering your shifts

Postby Elliot » Tue Aug 05, 2014 9:07 am

All my methods have been mentioned, which means I'm not smarter than anybody else today! :lol:

All shifts at same hour.

Typed schedule for all the days I'm there. I've been building it in MSWord since last year.

Old-fashioned travel alarm clocks -- two or three for waking up, for my shifts; and one in my pocket, for any other key events. All kept in zip-lock bags to keep them healthy. All with new batteries.

Once in a long while I write on top of my left hand, but it tends to come off, and I get accustomed to it being there before I need it.

Definitely a backpack just for shifts, and I make it ready for the next shift at the end of shifts.
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