I started 2021 with a paper planner, which is surprisingly something new for me. In the past, I typically kept my plans all digital with an occasional paper to-do list on the side. I’ve loved having a paper planner to map out my days and keep my lists all in one place.
Boy, are there tons of planners out there to explore and try out! I had no idea. I had to create a list of requirements to narrow down my choices.
I wanted daily and weekly pages with room to take notes. I didn’t want a calendar-focused planner because I have digital calendars. I wanted space to keep my projects and to-dos organized.
So, I started the year with a Panda Planner. I really enjoyed this book. Given the number of daily pages in it, each book is filled within 3 months. This was a great choice if you’re working on gratitude, trying to bring deep work or focus into your life, or reset your personal priorities. There are multiple spaces to answer printed reflective and planning-based questions on the daily and weekly pages. I used these at first, but I found myself getting repetitive. I’m in a good space at work being balanced and focused on what’s important. I didn’t feel like I needed those question sections.
I eventually just focused on the schedule, tasks, and notes section on the daily pages. I like having a daily page where I can block large chunks of time for deep work and list what I must get done for the day.
After I filled the Panda Planner, I picked up a Wyze Planner. They are similar. The Wyze Planner has less reflective questions and, therefore, room for more daily pages. It should last me 6 months – double the time of the Panda Planner.
I still don’t really use the monthly pages, but I’m all over the weekly and daily pages.
On the weekly pages, I use the free space to list every to-do item I have for every work project. It’s my master list of tasks with due days next to each activity. If I take on a new task or assignment, it goes on the list. My must-dos for the week are listed in the weekly section call Plan Upcoming Week.
The daily pages are more distilled than the Panda Planner. Here we only have the sections I care about most: my top priority, my schedule, today’s to-dos, and a notes section (where I document how many hours I need to bill to each project).
I’ve been in the Wyze planner for a couple of weeks now, and I’ve really liked it. There are sections up front for goal setting that I need to leverage more. You can even track habits too. I tried to adopt that practice, but I’m just terrible at it. I don’t care enough to track.
That’s all for now. Happy Friday!