One thing you need to know about me is that I have a thing for stationery. So you can probably imagine my excitement when comes the time to buy a new planner – although I have to admit that I usually get really into my new planner during the first couple of months and then kind of forget it half way through the year. It’s something that I’ve been trying to change for the last couple of years.
Anyway, for 2018 I picked up the blush planner by Emma Kate Co. It was love at first sight, from the color to the design to its story. Plus, I love the message on the cover: “It’s all messy. The hair. The bed. The heart. Life.” Often planners can make us feel like we have to be perfect and super organized and this planner is a reminder that life is messy and that’s OK.
How To Make The Most Of Your Planner
Because it’s the beginning of the year and I’m in planner mode, I’m going to share with you how I’m organizing my planner as well as a few tips on how to make the most of it. And by the way, I only use this planner for my blog and my personal life as I have a separate one for work – it just works for me better that way.
1. Brain dump to-do list.
I always start with a “brain dump to-do list”. At this point I don’t worry about prioritizing, I just write every single thing I need to do. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, this will give you a clear vision of everything that’s on your plate. After you make your list, you can start prioritizing and scheduling stuff in your planner.
2. Set your top 3 priorities.
It’s important to prioritize otherwise you’ll feel
even more overwhelmed by your long to-do list. So set your top 3 priorities and get them done first before you move to your other to-dos. This is something that I don’t do every day though as I can be quite the procrastinator, but it definitely helps when I actually do it.
3. Set goals for each day.
After you set your top 3, list your other tasks for the day. But don’t put too much on your plate. If you’re anything like me, overscheduling seems to make motivation & productivity disappear. Also, a recent thing that I’ve learned works for me is to set a time frame to accomplish a certain task. Or whenever I’m procrastinating on something, I tell myself that I’ll only do it for 20 minutes and then I’ll do something else. But then I gain momentum and want to keep working on it even after the 20 minutes are over. It’s just that first step that complicates things.
4. Schedule some “me time”.
I’m still experimenting with this one but it basically consists in scheduling something for you during the day. Not something you have to do but something that you actually want to do. Self-care is super important, both for your body and mind, so if you’re anything like me and tend to forget it, write it down in your planner as a reminder.
5. Make room for gratitude.
It’s nice to end the day on a positive note and take some time to be grateful. So at the end of the day, I always enjoy taking a couple of minutes to reflect and write one thing that brought me joy, whether it’s big or small.
6. Monthly expenses.
I also like to keep a track of my monthly expenses on the last pages of my planner so that I’m aware of how much money I’m spending and on what.
7. Stickers, washi tape & colorful pens.
This planner has a very clean and simple layout which I love. So many planners have crazy designs and too many colors which doesn’t leave a lot of room to decorate it as you please. I love playing with motivational stickers, pretty washi tape, and colorful pens to make things a bit more interesting and inspiring.