Top Five Tips for Keeping Up with Your Planner

Top Five Tips for Keeping Up with Your Planner

Some people might look at my planner and think it’s overkill. But you know what? I don’t even remember the last time I missed an appointment. I don’t think I ever forgot a due date for an assignment while I was in school. And I’m not one to forget a birthday either. You know why? It’s because I use a planner! (Surprise.)

And it’s NOT because I’m a planner decorator. You 100% do not have to decorate your planner if you don’t want to or don’t have the time. But, I have found that decorating, for me, encourages me to keep up with my planner. The decoration goes hand-in-hand with the functional elements of my planner to create a system that is fun and keeps me organized.

In this post, I want to share my Top Five Tips for Keeping Up with Your Planner. I want to show you that there are other ways – beside decorating – to make you planner an efficient organization system for you. If there’s something in you that recognizes how a planner could make your life a little brighter, but you’re not quite sure how, keep reading.

My Top Five Tips for Keeping Up with Your Planner

  1. Make it multi-functional. Make it that one place where you list out everything – appointments, tasks, events, holidays, habits, chores, goals, etc. You can even make it part journal and record quotes, what you’re watching, eating, reading, or how you felt that day. When you make your planner a catch-all, you’re much more likely to reach for it when you want to record something.
  2. Make it pretty. No, you don’t have to decorate it as much I do or as much as so-and-so on Instagram. Simply make it something that pleases you to look at. Whether that means a pretty cover, or a fun bookmark, or even just using a bright colored pen, making your planner visually appealing will encourage you to use it.
  3. Make it interactive. Instead of just writing a task down, put a checkbox next to it. Instead of writing in “workout”, leave an empty box to fill in with the details of your workout after you’ve done it. Track your water intake my coloring in a small glass of water for every glass you drink. These simple steps make you far more likely to actually get that task done, workout, or drink water. Try making your tasks or habits interactive in some way, and see how it affects your motivation to actually get it done.
  4. Make it personal. Have your planner monogrammed or personalized. Paperclip in some of your favorite photos or quotes, customize a dashboard with your goals for the year, or make your own planner charm that’s symbolic in some way. Make your planner mean something to you.
  5. Make it part of your routine. Schedule out a block of time every week, every month, or even every day to update your planner. Keeping up with your planner is about maintenance. If you keep up with it piece by piece, adding in appointments as you schedule them, it’s not that overwhelming. But if you attempt to plan everything out at once or put off updating your planner for weeks or months at a time, it will be overwhelming. Things will fall through the cracks. And it’s not just about keeping your life organized – getting everything down on paper as you think of it clears up your mind to focus on other things, or even relax. You might even start to look forward to planning sessions as a fun, creative outlet, or a chance to be alone and think about you, your goals, and your life.

So there you have it – my Top Five Tips for Keeping Up with Your Planner. Try implementing these strategies individually to see what works for you. Remember that having a functional planner is all about finding out what works for you. I’m not here to tell you how to plan, but I do hope that I’ve given you some ideas on how to start or move forward.


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So you know that a planner will help you organize your life, but can't figure out how to keep up with it? Check out this list of my Top Five Tips for Keeping Up with Your Planner!

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  • Sandra

    Loved this article! Thanks for sharing these tips. I think they will make a huge difference 🙂

    July 13, 2016 at 10:05 am Reply
    • Haley

      Thanks for reading! I hope they do help make a difference 🙂
      xo, Haley

      July 13, 2016 at 10:49 am Reply
  • kay

    I needed this. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve purchased a planner to never use it! Ugh!

    July 13, 2016 at 10:30 am Reply
    • Haley

      The struggle is real Kay! Sometimes I get afraid of “messing up” how pretty is – which is just ridiculous because planners are meant to be USED! Thanks for commenting.
      xo, Haley

      July 13, 2016 at 10:51 am Reply
  • Son

    i have a huge struggle to write my to do things 🙁 but im trying and this tips will def help

    Loves from Sun &

    July 13, 2016 at 12:41 pm Reply
    • Haley

      Funny! For me, writing my to-dos down is the easy part – it’s actually DOING them that I struggle with! Thanks for commenting 😉
      xo, Haley

      July 13, 2016 at 2:06 pm Reply
  • Amanda

    This is great. I’m a total planner noob and struggle to use it consistently, so these are awesome tips. 🙂

    July 13, 2016 at 1:09 pm Reply
    • Haley

      Thanks for commenting Amanda! I hope these tips help you fall in love with planning like I have.
      xo, Haley

      July 13, 2016 at 2:07 pm Reply
  • Vanessa

    I really love to buy planners but I never use them. I always say I’m gonna use it but end up just putting everything in my phone. 😕
    I want to use it though haha.

    October 24, 2016 at 10:39 pm Reply
    • Haley

      They’re all so cute! It’s hard not to buy them all 🙂 I hope these tips encourage you to really use a planner – it’s amazing what a difference actually writing down your to-do list can make. Thanks for reading!
      xo, Haley

      October 25, 2016 at 9:04 am Reply
  • Deon

    Needed this article. I used to keep up with my planner all the time until it got overwhelming I’ve learned that I don’t need to decorate it all the time. I’ve just recently started getting back into using my planner. Now that I’ve read this article I know I’m on the right track thank you so much.

    September 17, 2017 at 9:51 am Reply
    • Haley

      I totally know how you feel! It can be overwhelming sometimes when you think you have to decorate. But your planner is your space, for you to use how you please! I hope you are inspired to have fun while planning again!
      xo, Haley

      September 17, 2017 at 3:20 pm Reply

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