Late Night Confessions of an Excel Addict

Excel is my weakness. I’m not sure exactly when or how it happened, but it became a program I have to have. Not just needing to have the program on my PC, but to a point where I am using Excel at least once a day. And, honestly, I use it quite a lot more than that. On an average day, I am guaranteed to have 4 programs running at all times: Firefox, AIM, MSN, and Excel.

I use Excel for anything and everything. One example: I use it as a tool to aide in planning of vacations. I’ll create one tab to make a list of rental car companies, and the prices each one offers, along with any coupon codes, etc, that I might need. I create another tab with different flights, so I can pick which is best. I’ll have another for hotels, where I can list locations, prices (with separate columns for price per night, taxes, overall price, and price per person), and I’ll have additional columns for comments, where I can log things like if there’s an additional fee for parking or internet, or anything else they might decide to charge me for. Once the decisions are made, there will be a tab with all the confirmation numbers and specific details, to print out easily and pack in the carry-on. A separate spreadsheet will help me keep a list of potential places to visit, along with the hours and prices of each attraction. I’ll even use a spreadsheet to help me plan what to pack on the trip, breaking things down into a checklist type format – IE. one column for shirts, another for pants, another for undergarments/nightwear/etc, and columns for shoes, or toiletries, or medications. There will be one tab with what needs to be packed, another for what is packed, and even another to break down my clothes by day, to make sure I have the right amount of each type of clothing packed. Yeah. I know, I’m insane. To further prove how crazy I am — I had a total of 7 separate multi-tabbed spreadsheets when I was planning my birthday trip to Vancouver this year. 😉

And I use it for so much more than just vacation planning. If I need to create a list (for absolutely anything at all), 99% of the time I’m going to do it in Excel. In the summer, when it’s almost time for all the TV shows to start back up — you guessed it, I’ll create a spreadsheet for it. Not only will the file have a list all the premiere dates for all the shows I watch, but I also use it to create a weekly grid, so I can visually see what show is on what night at what time — and figure out what needs to be DVR’d. (This is the list I created this for this fall. Shows have been adjusted since, but that was what I was originally watching.) Hmmm, I really need to work on a new list, since shows are about to start shifting around for the spring, and my midseason shows will be starting up soon. :-[

If I am shopping for something – yup. I’ll start a spreadsheet for that, too. That way, I can compare different models or brands, and see what the differences are, easily. And once I decide on the specific item I’m buying, I can use another tab, to list all vendors and their prices, to make sure I get the best cost! I have a sheet for books I want to read, and I have one for jewelry I want to buy. I’ve got another spreadsheet for jobs I’ve applied for, along with the contact info, dates I applied, any follow up taken, and any other job-hunt relevant info. I just did a search on my entire PC — as of right this second, I have 586 excel files on my computer, dating all the way back to February of 2000. (Oh yeah. I rarely trash my old Excel files, either. Ha. :-[ )

So… yeah. I want to get certified as an Excel Specialist. There’s still some things I need to learn before I can (like macros), but I think it would be nice. Especially considering my every day dependency on Excel.

I have no idea why I wrote an entire entry confessing the depths of my addiction to Excel, but I did. And since I am attempting to get back into the habit of posting again, I’m posting it. 😉 Anyone who actually read all this has my sympathy and appreciation. Haha.

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