I wrote a post detailing out how I use my planner several months ago, but since the New Year I have been using a new planner with a different layout, and it has just been working out a lot better for me. I used to try and color code and incorporate highlighters and do a bunch of crazy stuff that ended up taking away from the purpose of the planner – which was to organize and simplify my life.
Now first things first, I highly recommend that you have a planner – a lot of people don’t think they need one, but that doesn’t mean they wouldn’t benefit from one. If you have any sort of responsibilities or deadlines at all a planner can help you reduce so much stress.
I have been religiously using a planner since I got to college because that’s when my life really exploded with responsibility. I balance my classes, the blog, practices, volunteering, and other important dates. Honestly, without my planner I would be a mess.
If you’re looking for a super in depth planner routine complete with washi tape, highlighters, and color coding – you’ve come to the wrong place. But if you want a simple and effective routine that is going to help you organize your life stress-free then just stick around!
I received this planner from the lovely folks at Minted in October or November and I waited until January to start using it. I really love the layout of this planner and how it’s organized – it is definitely the best I’ve ever used! Opening it up, you see the next 24 months at a glance, and then you turn to the first monthly calendar. It has a completely blank calendar (so you fill in the dates!), a to-do list, and a section for notes. Flipping to the next page you have the first weekly calendar. This have five big boxes for the weekdays, and two small ones for Saturday and Sunday. Underneath the calendar is a weekly to-do list. At the end of each month you are also given a spot for notes! In the back of the planner there is a folder to hold important documents, and stickers to mark important dates!
How I use the monthly calendar.
I start filling in the monthly calendar as soon as an event pops up – so that I won’t forget it, but I don’t want to put it in my weekly section yet incase it gets canceled. So my monthly calendar is more of a ‘rough draft’ for any and all dates – tentative or not. I repurpose the to-do list section to track my social media numbers so that I can monitor growth
How I use the weekly calendar.
My weekly calendar tends to be a mess in the best possible way. I use the same pen for my planner (and everything else) so everything is written in clean, fine-tip, black ink. When I used to color code it just made things look more complicated than needed, and it didn’t serve me. I used to use different colors for different urgencies and that was silly. I can look at my planner now and see in my list of things to do what is the most important. Some people really benefit from color coding, but I realized that I am simply not one of those people, in fact trying to do so hindered me.
At the top of each box I write my intended blog post for the day and any important events like exams or meetings. My ‘to-do’ list of things I need to get done for the day goes under that and I cross things out as I go. Any very important, non-negotiable things that I must get done will be either boxed or bubbled, depending on my mood.
Every Sunday I will fill in the next week’s to-do list at the bottom of the page, and add to that as it goes. I use the to-do list for long term projects like preparing for finals or working on my e-book.
How I use the notes section.
The note section is definitely the messiest area in my planner – I use it for writing post ideas and video ideas, but also for any random lists I need. When I went home for Spring break I made a packing list, and when I have super busy and overwhelming days I will write a list of what I need to do in order of when I should do it.
So, like I said – I don’t have the fanciest planner or most in-depth system, but it works incredibly well for me. Complex planner routines just aren’t my cup of tea, so my new revamped routine definitely suits me better.
Where did you get you planner? Do you have an awesome system?