A Month With a Planner

In the past, I've only half-heartedly used a diary. I'd put important things like dentist appointments or hair cuts in it, then when I got that vague 'I'm sure something is happening around now' feeling, I'd check to make sure I wasn't about to miss something. I've never used one daily, but towards the end of last year I began to feel like it might be just what I've been missing in my quest to get more done each day and remember what's going on more successfully! 

So, I did a bit of research, and on a recommendation from a friend found the personalised spiral bound planners from Erin Condren. I was a bit more pricey than others I could have bought, but I liked the look of the layout and the month-to-view spread at the beginning of each month was appealing. It's also got a couple of pockets at the back, a few pages of stickers, and I'm a sucker for nice stationary...so I ordered one! 

Now, lots of people who use Erin Condren planners like to use them more like a journal or scrapbook, filling every white gap with a sticker and not filling in anything until the end of the week just to be sure there are no mistakes. However, this is a practical diary for me, so I've just been writing in the boxes and figuring out how it works best for me. I have bought a few extra bits that I thought might be useful, things like appointment stickers and some little coloured dots so I can start colour coding blog posts to hopefully keep track of what I'm writing about! It is quite nice to look at the week and be able to easily notice if I'm supposed to be anywhere different (like the gym/yoga/hairdressers for instance.

So far I've been using the bottom row for blog related things (and you can see how often I've had to push things back to the following day!) then sort of spreading the rest of the day throughout the other two boxes. It's also quite useful to have the section on the left for things that need doing over the coming week but don't have a specific day. There's a monthly to-do section at the beginning of each month's section too, and I've been using this to jot down post idea's as and when they occur to me.

Similar to the Filofax I was using up until now, the planner has a ruler that you can move along each week making it easy to turn the pages to the current week. I decided to stick my word of the year on it with gold glitter letters so I'm reminded of it every day! 

One other addition I've made is to put two little notebooks in the pocket at the back. One I'm using as a gratitude journal, and the other as a success log. It's really good to spend some time at the end of everyday thinking about the things that you're grateful for, and the things that have gone well. This idea is nothing new, but it's much easier to remember to do it when the notebooks are in the same place.

As ever, Pastry came along to help me take the pictures. I'm looking forward to the days getting longer so I can take pictures in better light again! 

So far, I think I've definitely been more productive, and it's nice to go to bed knowing that the next day is planned out. I think as the year goes on I'll get used to how the layout works best for me, but I'm finding I'm writing more and more in it (even things like 'hang out the washing', 'text Mum back') and seeing it in writing definitely makes me more likely to do whatever it is! 

(Just a quick note: This post isn't sponsored in any way, I've just read it back and it sounds a bit advertisey, but it's just my honest review!) 

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