Why have a planner? You aren’t always at home, close to your calendar. There will be time out and about, at school, work, appointments, running errands when you will need to refer to your calendar. The planner also allows you to add more detail each appointment or event, including gift ideas, phone numbers, due dates or prices.
What kind of planner? For me personally I like something no bigger than A5 and fairly lightweight so that I can carry it in my handbag. It also helps if it has divided sections so that I can organise not only appointment times and dates, but to do lists, meal plans and blog schedules. All in the one place.
Where do you keep your planner? At home I keep it in our Organisation Station, right by the phone, computer and calendar. When ever I leave for the day I pop it in my handbag.
Having a planner is great but like the calendar you have to USE it EFFECTIVELY for it to work FOR YOU!
Every year I have experimented with a new planner. This year it is my very own personalised version from personal-planner.com.
I chose it because,
It’s a great size (a5) and light enough for my bag (it also comes in even smaller sizes.
I could personalise the contents and cover
Birthdays and anniversaries are personalised and printed onto the diary! Yes I am not kidding!
It includes space for to do lists (with a box to tick)
Each page has plenty of room for a whole family of appointments and meal plans AND blog schedule
You can lay it flat.
YOU CAN PERSONALISE IT!!! I know I said it twice but that is really what sold it for me.
Here is mine, but remember you can alter the layout to suit yourself!!!
Everything about it is personalised! You can personalise the cover, colour, the contents, the layout, and even add birthdays and anniversaries. It is also great for teachers or students and offers sections for assignment due dates. Here is how I use it…
A Close Up View
My tips for using a planner effectively.
These are almost identical to my tips for using a CALENDAR.
1. Colour Coordinate. Ok so maybe I am a little OCD when it comes to colour coding but this is something that has always worked for me. Each member of the family has their own colour. Any events or activities that are for the whole fmaily also have their own colour. This allows me to see at a glance who has what happening each day. I use these same colours on my Calendar as well. Meals are written in the family colour and blog schedule in my colour.
2. Location, Location, Location. The planner goes everywhere with me in my handbag. This way if I need to record anything I have my planner. It also holds my shopping list (folded up). When at home I keep my planner in our Organisation Station. It is near the phone, computer and where all of our bills and mails are kept. This means as soon as any dates are confirmed they can be scheduled STRAIGHT into my planner. If I dont do it straight awy or write it on a piece of paper for transferring later, it doesn’t happen!
3. One and Only. Until now this has been a hard one. But where possible I stronly support that you have only one planner. I have had a work planner, blog schedule, meal plan and a personal planner all going at once and it is CRAZY!!! I still have a meal plan board (for the whole family to see) but for my own reference I also have it in my planner. I no longer need a work planner!
4. EVERYTHING GOES IN THE PLANNER. My planner is a space to include a more detailed entry of each appointment. This includes medical appointments (Date, time, Dr, cost) Birthday parties (R.S.V.P number and due date, party date time place, gift ideas) School events (due date of permission note, items required, date, time place transport specifics) EVERYTHING.
5. Take the time. I take the time once a week to update my diary with what is on the calendar. This gets everything clear in my head for the upcoming week. I also use this time to look ahead and make plans. Buying birthday cards or presents, making sure homework or assignments are done with plenty of time, scheduling appointments. I find if I set the same time every week to do this task (Sunday night) I will actually do it!!!