We, humans, are pretty interesting, aren’t we?
Such a lot of diversity in everything, including the way we think and take action in our lives. The same goes for how we plan our everyday activities. Yeah, we know we touched a nerve there.
For people who prefer the organized way of life, planners involve a big part of their schedule as they tend to be meticulous in everything they do, planning all their tasks to the last detail. But if you are a beginner looking to start using a planner for the very first time, here are 5 top reasons to start using planners, we have a lot of pointers to help you with.
Let’s move ahead then, shall we? 🙂
What is a Planner, and Why Should You Use One?
To put it simply, a planner is a document that can be in a digital or printed format, where you can enter different tasks, errands, and activities at their predefined schedule so that you don’t miss or forget them.
Here are a few good reasons why using a planner is a great idea-
1- It Boosts Productivity
While a lot of people relate the virtue of productivity with working or jobs, it’s not the real case. Productivity plays a big role in both personal as well as professional life. Personal scheduling may be cleaning a particular area of your home or cooking lunch or dinner, while professional scheduling could be related to your office or business activities(like tracking meetings, projects, clients, etc).
Planners make sticking to any of the scheduled tasks very easy as you know EXACTLY what you are supposed to do at a given time slot.
2- Fosters Better Time Management
You might often be filled with the foreboding that you just can’t find enough time to set your daily chores in order. In truth, that’s because something is missing in the way you tend to schedule your tasks.
A planner allows you to schedule any task, event, appointment, and more in such a simple manner that you never run out of time. The fit schedule and deadlines make it easy for you to take out the right amount of time for yourself and your family.
3- Increased Recreational Time
Because a planner allows you to stick to your important scheduled tasks to great effect, a considerable amount of the now available free time can be used for leisure activities or doing something that you like.
Even here, there are a lot of people who like making their planners more attractive as a hobby. Who knows, you might do that too once you get acquainted with the planner habit!
4- They Provide Relief From Stress
Stress has a lot of different ways to pop up in our minds and then stay there, but the most common of them is how overwhelmed it can make us feel. The reasons can be many- a difficult or packed schedule and too much to deliver.
There can be other influences too, but with a planner, you will be amazed at how seamless everything becomes. You will find out that suddenly you have a lot of time for many things and you are never overwhelmed. This relieves you of that unwanted stress.
5 – Planners have the Power to Change Your Lifestyle
There are many things planners can do, you ever have imagined. Certain instruments like tracking your habits(tracker) can help you to track anything you want, like, how much water you intake, at what time you wake up and go to bed, how much sleep you are taking and many more things may come across your mind.
According to an article published in CNBC, the most successful people in the world wake up early in the morning (before 6 am), like Tim Cook ( CEO of Apple, Inc), Oprah Winfrey, Michelle Obama, Indira Nooyi.
Once you developed the habit of waking up early, you will find out that your day is way more productive than it used to be. Track your habit for at least one week and you will see the change in your lifestyle.
Types of Planners
Now I am hoping now you are convinced to some extent that planners are much more than you know, and that’s why we are here to make you aware of that.
There are hundreds of types of planners available, and each planner has its own set of utilities to serve. Some of them are:
Let’s have a look-
|Bullet Journals||Bullet journals are the combination of an everyday planner and a diary, with which you can streamline different day-to-day aspects of your life with ease. It has to-do lists, monthly notes, long-term needs, you can mark every entry with bullet points, and more.|
|Health and Fitness Planners||Health and fitness planners are a great way of tracking your health aspirations and goals. An ideal health and fitness planner should include heads like date and time, calorie intake, food items, training method, body weight, and mood among others.|
|Financial Planners||Also known as a budget planners, financial planners help you keep a track of your regular financial expenses and manage them accordingly. This planner includes the description of every transaction, the transaction date, and the closing balance after each transaction.|
|Digital Planners||You can think of digital planners as the, well, digital versions of the traditional printed paper planner. Compared to a traditional planner, digital planners make it easy to make changes to existing planner notes with just a few clicks. There are a lot of customization options in a digital planner, which is one of its strongest points.|
|Blank Planners||They are also known as custom planners, as you can decide and design the navigation of your blank planner from scratch. It would be too much to describe what you can do with a blank planner, as everything you can do to make a blank planner your own is entirely up to you.|
Here is the list of most commonly used business planners:-
|Weekly Action Plan|
|Annual Business Goals|
|End of the Year Review|
|30 Days Challenge Template|
Which Planner Should You Choose as a Beginner?
Being a beginner does not mean you need to complicate your life thinking about which planner would be best suited to you. We would say that’s the biggest advantage you have as a beginner.
Despite the variations of planners available today, in our opinion, the only thing you will need to choose is- a digital planner or a paper planner?
Honestly, it depends on what you wish to do with the planner and also the kind of present lifestyle you have. If you are more of a tech-savvy individual, then a digital planner will suit you fine. Moreover, the digital ones provide a lot of flexibility and options for editing, which will feel a lot more immersive to you.
On the other hand, if we talk about disadvantages, there’s no physical or tangible feel to a digital planner, and a lot of people value the planner pages laid side by side with the rough notes and doodles all over their planner.
Then there are different layouts too, with a printable daily planner, weekly planner, and monthly planner. This frequency will again depend on you, in how comfortable you will be under each kind of planner.
This is why we won’t try to convince you to choose one over the other. As a beginner, we leave that decision to you! 🙂
How to Use a Planner Effectively?
Using a planner is one thing. However, using it to great effect is an altogether different thing.
To help you make the best use of your planner, we have a few tips that could be very essential for you-
1- Make a Brain Dump Sheet
The brain dump is simply a way to declutter your mind and thoughts, you may even call it thought process, brainstorming, random thoughts, thoughts collection, etc. Most of the time we are overwhelmed with hundreds of thoughts and tasks running across our minds and eventually accomplish very few of them.
A brain dump sheet allows you to note down every single task or thought which is important to you. It could be like, calling your friend, cleaning the washroom, writing a blog post, decluttering almirah, or maybe planning a holiday with family.
Once your brain dump sheet is ready, now you can arrange all these tasks in your daily, weekly, or monthly layout planners, as suitable to you.
2- Mark Deadlines and Important Dates Soonest
Make this one a habit as soon as you can- mark all the important dates and deadlines, the moment you get to know about them. In terms of responsibilities too, this habit will always give you a lot of clarity in further planning out your things.
3- Consistency is Crucial
Because using a planner will be a new habit for you, it will take a certain amount of time to get a complete hold of it. The same applies to the habit of using a planner as well. The key to using a planner is using it consistently, otherwise, the effectiveness you expect in your life with one will be bound to take a hit. Stay consistent, it’s important.
4- Never Underestimate Color Coding
Color coding makes it very easy to understand the kind of tasks you have lined up and then easier to accomplish them. You can even color-code similar tasks with one color to identify them with just a glance (eg. all pending bills in Red color). A colorful planner is also more pleasing to the eye as compared to a mundane planner with just entries for everything.
So, beginners, here we are. This is what we felt was important to bring to your attention about using a planner for the very first time. If you can’t find the perfect printable planner for you, we can help you there!
Martha is the face behind the blog calenedarkart, a working professional and mother of one cute baby boy. It all started in late 2018 when I found the value of planning printables I really started to make significant progress on my bigger goals. Now I want to help you do the same. I usually design planning printables like calendars, planners, and planning templates. The designs are minimalist, helpful, and cute. I am sure you will love using them.