It’s Sunday night on the first day of the first month of 2017, and the eve of the first Monday of the year. I’m doing what I do most Sunday nights, planning for the week.
I’m snuggled in my bed, sipping something sweet, and poring over my calendars. Plural. I love my phone’s Google Calendar that syncs up with those of the rest of my family, but I can’t live without a paper version too.
Though my own brain and habits haven’t been studied and tracked, I know there is Scientific evidence that suggests by physically writing things down, we process the information better by creating spatial connections in our brains and we have an easier time remembering the important stuff.
I’ve always been a writer-downer. It is one of the tools that allows me to be a high-capacity woman. I’m a big fan of lists and I create them for everything: Grocery shopping, names I might like to use in the stories I’m writing, funny things my kids say, special information about friends I don’t want to forget, books I want to read, etc. All of this gets jotted down in the different sections of my paper planner, then some of it gets entered into my phone, and on the big family calendar on the side of our refrigerator.
I prefer to see the whole month-at-a-glance, so I like the large flexi-planner. Mine is dated August 2016 – December 2017. My phone calendar is set to see the day-at-a-glance. Do what works for you!
Each month I begin by filling in the squares with standing commitments like meeting times, food bank days, fieldtrips, and my kids’ work schedules and babysitting dates.
I use the extra blank squares on the calendar to record notes about the kids and that month’s book releases I’m excitedly awaiting. This month they’re on the bottom. My teenagers pay for their own phones, so this is where I record what they owe us and I cross it off when they pay it. Any other loans and notes about the kids get recorded here as well.
I use the side column to list birthdays and anniversaries of family and friends, and section off the bottom for our list of bills so I have a visual of what we need to pay for the month.
The top margin gets filled in with quotes, questions, observations, and other notes.
The circled dates are my paydays for my part-time jobs.
The week-at-a-glance section in my planner is where I record notes as I think of them. Kind of like a daily sticky note of what happened or things I want to remember.
What I’m adding this year:
- Book List – Books I’ve read will be recorded on the day I finish them.
- Movie List – Movies watched will be recorded on the day I watch them.
- Moving List – Daily recording of the steps I take. I plan to add a lot more of them.
Do you use a planner or calendar? More than one? How do you stay organized?
I’m kicking off 2017 by sharing some of my life hacks! Next up: The 5 Minute Journal!