Monday, September 16, 2019

My Planner System and Planner Peace

My definition of planner peace is being contented with your planner's system and function - and I definitely am that.  My system has evolved over the years, but not by much, I have noticed there are components that I must have in whatever planner I am using (no matter what the size or inserts) to have that peace. Built-in reminders and reviews are key to (my) planner peace  Today I am going to share with you those different components, and hopefully, I won't be too lengthy.

My first divider is INBOX.  The front of my divider is also my dashboard.  It usually has some sort of sticky note on it with items needed at the grocery store.  My hubby either picks those up after work (we live 12 miles from town), or they're added to my grocery list at the end of the week.  Behind the divider is where I keep my Next Actions List.  This list is a to-do list with items that don't have a firm due date.  For example, I need to schedule a sports physical for my son, but it isn't due until some time in the spring, and I keep it on this list as a reminder. (My built-in review reminds me to check the list!!  Plenty of notepapers are also kept in my inbox, ready for me to scribble notes in a hurry that can be processed later.

My top three tabs are my daily, weekly, and monthly tabs

I use Franklin Covey day on 2 pages for my daily pages.  My current pages are "Her Point of View" and they have very pretty, colorful pages - does that count as decorative? ☺ My schedule and the to-do list are on the left side and the notes page is on the right side.  I absolutely love having a notes page. There are so many uses for having one - check out this post I wrote for 18 Ways to Use a Notes Page.
Franklin Covey's method of indexing important information on your daily pages is excellent.  My notes pages look different every day.  I often track my water and exercise on the notes page as well as write down information from phone calls.  On Saturdays, I write down my goals for the week ahead, and on Sundays, I often use that page for sermon notes.  If there's anything I want to reference later, I write the date and a brief description of that months' index page.

My weekly pages used to set unnoticed all week and I even wondered why I had them, but recently I
started using them in a whole different way and it has been a game-changer.  They are so, so simple! I created a folded insert that has four columns on the front of the page and four columns on the back.  They are labeled Sun - Saturday and they are undated, which makes it easy for me to grab them and start writing in my information instead of dating and printing them every week. 

The best way I know to describe them is that they are pre-planning pages.  I don't worry about making these pretty with careful handwriting.  I keep 2 or 3 of them in my planner at a time.  They are especially good when I have a question or thought about something I might need to do later.  I scribble information on them throughout the week ahead and sometimes the week of.  I slash through the information that I might have already taken care of to save time  If anyone is interested in seeing pics, let me know.

I also created my own monthly pages (dated pages for 2020 are available on the blog for free - check out the link in the top tabs of this blog page).  I use a month on 2 pages, Sun-Sat with a notes column.  I especially like that each day has faint lines to keep me straight!

Money tab - behind here is where I keep a Target plastic pocket that holds 3x5 cards with that months' bill printed on them, and on the right side is my Weekly Balance Sheet. I write down the bills that I am going to pay that week.  When I actually go online to pay them, I check them off.  When they clear the bank, I highlight them.  I also write down what our real balance is minus the bills - just a little way that keeps me organized.

I have a projects tab where I keep up with current...projects!  Right now I have a page where I am planning a get together with my extended family, information on my sons' Senior year, a baby gift project, a family booklet I'm making in memory of my dad, and a meal planning project.

I have not always had a health tab, but since I have many medications to keep up with (post kidney transplant 10 years!), and I use a heath tracker, I've found the tab useful.

I'm not sure my home tab is all that needed, but it does take me quickly to my menu & grocery list pages, and I use them quite often.  Someday I might add some actual cleaning task lists!  Ha!

My last section is called A-Z.  I use A-Z tabs as a filing cabinet of sorts.  This is where I keep my frequently used addresses (A), a packing list (P),  Wishlist (W), Planner Review lists (R), etc.  On the inside of the tabs, I write in passwords, account information, post office hours (P), etc. This section allows me to truly have a place for everything.

This year, I finally figured out a way to also use my planner as my homeschool planner.  That means, yes, I keep my weekly lesson plans, attendance record, and grades inside my planner also.  It's a pretty stuffed planner but it works perfectly for me

My number 1 tip?  Write it down?  If you have time, write it in the appropriate place.  If you don't, keep notepaper in a designated spot so you can scribble it down and process later.  Do planner reviews regularly.  I do my daily, weekly and monthly.

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