How To Effectively Use A Planner.
I have a tendency to over-book myself if I do not immediately write down events and assignments. And this is where my lifesaving, handy dandy notebook comes in. But seriously. i. love. planners. they regularly allow me to keep my sanity and they are the only thing that keeps me from ripping out my hair on the daily.
I keep my homework assignments, daily to-do lists and special events in there. It is color coded, because I am a visual human being, and without it I would be lost. If you haven’t considered using one, you are living life wrong (okay, you’re not wrong but you are missing out I swear). And in my personal opinion, cellphone/ipad/computer planners just don’t cut it. I like the feeling of paper planners and I like personalizing it to fit the way my mind and schedule work. Buying a new planner is absolutely one of my favorite parts of the year.
Here is the color coding system I use:
- Purple: School
- Pink: Personal/Social
- Orange: Extracurricular
- Green: Doctor
- Blue: Church
- Red: Work
You can tailor this to fit your own colors/needs, but I find that this system works best for me. It covers everything and I can see it at a glance.
Okay, so now that you have a planner, what do you do with it exactly? Good question, you inquisitive human, you. But I don’t have a specific answer for you. (Sorry, nobody’s perfect) But in all actuality, do whatever keeps you on schedule. I know people that write down every hour of every day and never deviate. That would drive me crazy, personally, but to each his own. In short: you do you.
In my month-at-a-glance section, I write down appointments, work schedule, extra labs for class, and anything else I think I need help remembering throughout the month. For example, I have things like extra labs for my class, test dates, real dates (hiiii Adam), and birthdays. I typically put down what time these things fall so I know where I can add appts and events without double-booking myself.
In my week-at-a-glance section, I write down homework assignments and test dates. I don’t typically write down anything outside of school in these sections. I write my assignments in list form so that I can cross them off when I finish them (because it’s really satisfying and I can). *EXCEPTION: I do sometimes write to-do lists on post it notes and stick them in this section. There is also a “notes” section at the end of the week that I put important things in as well.* Once I graduate, I will continue writing a more detailed itemized list of what needs to be done on that particular day.
You can choose to buy a bunch of decorations to fill your planner with. They have a lot of cute paper clips, tab markers, and stickers available to decorate to your hearts content. I really just use my colored pens/highlighters, and yellow post it notes. It keeps it simple and I can read the things that I need to be getting done quickly and efficiently.
Planners can be the saving grace of organization, even if you are not in school. I like knowing that everything that needs to be done in my day can be found in there. I never have to worry about missing anything unless I fail to write it down, which takes a big weight off my shoulders during the week. This is the beginning of having an organized life and everyone should incorporate into their lifestyle. It is especially helpful when you have kids, as each one has their own set of extracurriculars and field trips, etc.
If you have a planner that really works for you, let me know! I love seeing how people organize their lives. 🙂