Let’s talk planners

Sometimes I call them journals but really it’s all about the planning for me. These things used to be more journal like with a lot more writing in it. Last year I started with the Midori and there was a ton of writing going on. January and February were very full of creative writing for me. Then shows and teaching events started in. Being on the road, I just wanted to nap. I would bring my journal/planner into the bed with me, and grab a cup of coffee. Then I’d stare at the blank page before I realized I needed to get some sleep so I’d be effective the next day.

I had such high expectations of my journal but really I spent more time with the planner portions of the Midori. I also started carrying a second planner to work on spiritual and yogi stuff. And then a 3rd book as I was going through a yogi exploration in depth… This was all too many books and invariably one would get left behind. I know that I could have put new books in with the Midori but the truth was, I’m not a fan of the size of the Midori. There, I said it.

I’m not a fan of the Personal sized Midori. (8.25 x 4.33 inches)
I missed my A5 sized journals. (5.8 x 8.3 inches)

Yet, if we remember, I loved the bullet journals but there were things that weren’t working so I switched to the Midori planners/journals. Now we know that wasn’t going to work the way I wanted it to after a solid year so I started hunting again.
In walks the Panda Planner.
I just picked this up but I’m passing it on to a child… why?

Monthly –
Love the goal setting and the places to write note about how each month did for me. This I will continue on. I like having a month view but I want a full year a time (Panda Planner is half a year). It will help me plan out. I share a Google Calendar with my family and I’ll have to update this but I have things planned so far in advance that it’s nice to have a full year I can flip through.

Weekly –
I like the positive outlooks this has. It’s pretty cool with the habits, the projects, the goals…. I like that it has blocks for all aspects of your life so you don’t skip something. I have a habit of skipping the personal and only taking care of the other 3…. maybe. There are definite portions of this that I will be keeping on.

Daily –
There’s not so much love here for me. I thought this would be a great way to keep my daily work and daily spiritual/yogi work all happening each day. The theory was sound but I don’t want to fill out all their little boxes. Yeah, I might have had issues with authority once upon a time. What of it? There are a couple of things I’m going to keep but I’m not sure exactly how yet. New planner stuff will be trickling in and I’ve started a little bit by cutting up paper I have to mock up what I want.

There’s bookmarks that help you keep track of where you are and a handy back pocket. There aren’t any blank pages, though. What if I wanted to write more? What if I needed further exploration of something that came up in my studies. I haven’t written a lot of creative stuff lately but I’d like to do more and I want the option available to me. If it’s not there, then I definitely won’t do it.

Now… I want to take a moment to tell you that the Panda Planner is pretty fantastic in a lot of ways. I hope you didn’t take this post being too negative about it. It’s got some great features and if you’re trying to break out of a rut, be more confident, learn how to goal set, be more positive…etc etc, it could really be a great planner for you. Personally I should have known better because I’m pretty set in my requirements of what I want. More info can be found at Panda Planner – and if someone wants to try this at a discount, I have a couple of discount cards that can be used on Amazon. Privately message me and I’ll get you the discount code. For some of you out there, this could be the exact planner you’re looking for.

For me, we’ll talk more about what I’m working on…soon

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3 Responses to Let’s talk planners

  1. Jennifer Meyers says:

    I had been swirling around the same struggles for more than a year. The bullet journal, Midori regular and small, Erin Condren, Happy Planner…all had features that I like and that didn’t work for me. In the end I realized that a planner and a journal are not the same thing. For the planner, I need to be able to add and move pages. I need a month view, and a daily to do list, and a monthly master task list. After all of the iterations, I’m back to my Franklin Planner. It isn’t just the clean pages that make this work, it’s the method for planning that brings it all together (this is the stuff of a much longer reply).

    For journaling, I keep separate books, writing on lined pages, drawing on blank pages. I think of organizing this information the same way I would organize a room. Each area has a function and only the things belonging to that function are in that area of the room. Please note, my studio is exempt from this sort of order :)

    Thanks for sharing your thought process.

  2. Hey, I switch planners every few years, sometimes not because I want to. Used to use Franklin, then found someone who would customize whatever you wanted, add blank and lined pages etc, it was awesome. Then she decided to close her business and move on to other things. I miss those planners. I then went with one from Etsy but it was really big and kind of a strange size. I then used Passion planners for the last two years, which I do like but they always run out of room, they are pretty compact but I love the monthly check ins on goals and things. This next year I am trying a dragon tree press Rituals for Living Dreambook and Planner. It’s a bit larger 7×9, but has lots of goal planning and blank pages. Sometimes I cross their questions out and do my own thing but I think the main thing is that I’m actually trying to plan things. So ya will be interested to see what you come up with.

    • Jennifer Meyers says:

      I’ll be interested to hear your thoughts on the Dragon Tree planner. I looked at that and it sounded good, but might not be a good fit for my work life.

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