I am. I need my pens and paper. Digital calendars just don't do it for me. Not on my computer. Not on my phone. Not on a tablet. And I certainly don't need (or want) a watch buzzing reminders at me.
Nope. I need handwritten reminders and color-coded ink. I need post it notes. I need to be able to spread everything out on the table or the floor and see the big picture.
Maybe I'm old fashioned. If I am, I'm ok with that.
The last couple years I've made my own. Nothing fancy. And nothing I created all at once. I'd print up calendar pages and create template weekly schedules as I needed them. Everything was fluid and adaptable.
At the end of December when I started putting something together for 2016 I began to think more critically about what's most useful for me and about what features professionally printed planners usually have.
My motivations were twofold:
First, I wanted to create the most useful planner for myself that I could so I'd be organized and on-task for the whole year.
Second, I plan on designing and creating a print-on-demand planner with my art for 2017 (probably with Blurb -- if you have used Blurb in the past, I'd love to hear about it!). I want it to be pretty and functional.
So far the calendar I've created for myself is very basic (and sadly, unlike my art print desk calendar, not very pretty). It's in a 3-ring binder, easy to switch out and change as needed.
Here are a couple pages I created for general planning and brainstorming for the year:
I also created a grid with a box for each month so I could jot down ideas by month, too.
I made a few of that one so I could organize by type. For example, one page is just for my blog.
I'm still figuring out what will be most useful for me for the month-by-month sections. I have a calendar page for each month and sheets for notes similar to the first year-long planning sheet above.
My printed planners for next year won't be quite so easily changed, so I hope to work out the kinks before I finalize the design.
Can you help me with that?
I'd love to hear your ideas and opinions about what works well for you and what you look for in a planner.
- Do you still use paper calendars and planners or do you prefer digital?
- What do you look for in a planner?
- Do you already have a favorite brand of planner/agenda/datebook/organizer? (Or maybe a favorite designer or artist who creates pretty planners that you like to use?)
- What size notebook works best for you?
- What format? Weekly? Monthly? A combination of both?
- Do you want or need blank pages for each month for writing notes or just at the beginning or end of the year?
- Do you like to use a book with pretty illustrations or inspiring quotations or is plain and simple more your style? (I still fondly remember my Chandler's Notebooks from high school. Plain, simple and yet I loved them).
- Do you want reminders, tips or other guides scattered throughout or do you just want room to write your own reminders? Would questions like "What do you want to accomplish this month" be helpful or superfluous?
- What do you use your planner for? Business? Personal development? Work schedule? School schedule? Your kids? Gardening? Meal planning? Appointments/meetings/etc? Birthdays? Something else?
I'm so curious to know how you like to keep organized and I appreciate any insight you can share!