Category: Planning Process

Planning Mechanics | One Book July 2022

Planning Mechanics | One Book July 2022

I know I go on and on about having a planning system that works with your brain. The planning mechanics are the subsystems and parts that make a planning system work.

— A place for everything, and everything in its place.

— Be creative with your page real estate.

— Sticky Notes!

— Incorporate printables! This applies to all planners, including bound books. Don’t hesitate to glue in or tip-in a printable ( My favorite tip-in video is from Daksina). We are incredibly lucky to have access to a wealth of printable inserts. Don’t skip using them just because you’re in a bound book! If it works for your brain, throw it in there! If it saves space (hello to my A6 and smaller planner people!), throw it in there! I use yearly foldouts for my husband’s game schedule for work; finances; large, multi-part, long-term projects (home improvements, specifically); and project index. It makes way more sense for me to keep all of that info on a one-page foldout for each item rather than using three or four spreads in my pocket Moleskine otherwise. That also allows for one spread to be dedicated to that “topic,” so the pages of the bound book that surround that tip-in can hold sticky notes or permanent notes that belong there as well… all of the pertinent information in one spread. Also, gluing in monthly calendars instead of having to draw them in every month guarantees that I’ll stay in a book longer… by about the third month of drawing in monthlies, I’m way over it.

— Pre-decorate for dailies, notes at the end of those pages. I am genuinely shocked that having different “page types” interspersed with each other doesn’t bother me; a few years ago, it would’ve bothered me to no end. I know that this is the best use of space in this small, bound format, and I know this setup and size are what I need right now, so having dailies/notes/journaling all interspersed isn’t bothering me at all.

— Quick curation: do I need this long-term (more than a month)? If not (a short/term, small project), I use a sticky note in the Project section or a page or two in the Daily notebook. If yes, at least a sticky note in the monthly or projects, or a spread or two in the Projects section. If not sure, then sticky note on the Weekly until I decide. Quick curating comes with being familiar with and comfortable in your system. I don’t want to think about where I should put something. I don’t want to think about where I might find a specific something when I need it. If I have to put too much thought into either placement or retrieval, I’ll constantly think about that instead of leaving that mental energy open for more important things. I don’t want to spend mental energy thinking about the mechanics. I need the mechanics to just work.

— Abbreviate when necessary, don’t worry about taking up space when I need it. I need space for school notes (formulas I need to memorize, steps involved in solving certain types of problems)… the stuff I need to commit to memory so well that little to no effort goes into retrieving it from my brain when I need it. This goes into curation. And sticky notes. If I’m not sure, sticky note on the Weekly. I can always dedicate a page or spread to it in a day or two if necessary.

— Section Linking! Information flows from one section to the next and back again. Projects and all of their steps go in the Projects section. Projects get listed on the Weekly (just the “title”, no specific steps), specific tasks for that project go on Dailies. There, I’ve linked three separate sections of my planner. This ties in to using page real estate (and time) wisely. I don’t need to list every step for a project on my Weekly because those steps are already listed in the Projects section. I just need the Project title/name on the Weekly so I remember to make some headway on it. When I’m setting up my day the night before, I look at my Weekly, see that project name listed, flip to it in my Project section, and add any tasks I want to finish from that project just in the next day. This also keeps my mental clutter at a minimum; I put my mental energy and time into the project steps that are on the Daily. The rest is in the Project section; I don’t have to worry about forgetting it or losing it.

— Timed things. A timeline, a list, what does your brain like? What looks the least distracting or confusing? I struggle with things that happen at :15, :20, and :45 because I have a lot of them and they don’t fit nicely into regular timeline inserts (usually). So I did what my brain defaults to anyway right now: a list.

— Yearlies act like a filter, (monthly) info I want to see without the noise of the other things in the same calendar.

LINKS

Tons of free printables and great information at Philofaxy

Great use of a small planner (Daily Pocket Moleskine) by Ka

— Beautiful, free printables from NeverPaperLand

— If you’d like to see the full set-up of this planner, it’s here.

Monthly Setup PWM – February 2022

Monthly Setup PWM – February 2022

2022 Planning System – College Classes Included!

2022 Planning System – College Classes Included!

I waited to record this until after my classes started so we could see the system in its entirety. This is one of many reasons that having a system that works for your brain is key… I’ve gone back to college full-time, and I knew I didn’t have to worry about how I was going to organize all of it. I simply slotted all of the new schedules and tasks into my existing system.

For me, the most important feature of a dependable planning system is ease of information in and information out. I need to be able to get information out of my head and into a reliable system where it won’t get lost. My planner works for me, I don’t work for it. It is my planner’s job to free up as much brain power as possible so I can allocate that brain power to producing and living rather than remembering upcoming tasks and dates.

Method versus System

Method versus System

In order for me to be both productive in my planning and fulfilled in my life, I need both breadth and depth in my planning. The Bullet Journal Method opened my eyes to what I see as the differences between “Method” and “System.” I’m curious what you all see as the possible differences between the two, if you do see differences.

I reached out to Lauren to see if she saw any differences, and we decided to do a set of collab videos talking about this topic. I can’t wait for you all to see Laurens video, because it is awesome! Go watch Lauren’s video, come back here and watch mine, and then let us know what you think!

As I said above, both breadth and depth are important to me in my planning. My System can handle breadth; regardless of what comes at me in the course of a day, as long as I write it down, it all ends up where it needs to be in order to get done. The Method provides the depth. The Method helps me to see why I’m doing things.

For me, the Method is the filter through with all things pass before being fed into the System, which is the nuts and bolts, i.e., my planner. The Method is, for me, in essence, Mindfulness.

The Method helps to clear mental distractions and self-doubt. The Method helps me to choose what to do, helps me to see why I’m doing it, and the System shows me how and when to do it.

The Method helps me to see connections between seemingly disparate things in the System, which makes me more efficient and brings depth to those things.

Tailor Your Planner To Fit Your Thinking | 25 Days of Planning Tips

Tailor Your Planner To Fit Your Thinking | 25 Days of Planning Tips

I am so thrilled to have been asked to join in on the 25 Days of Planner Tips hosted by ThePaperAndPenGirl!

The Day One video is here… go there first so you can get all of the information.

Day Three will be hosted by TarchelleB… go there and subscribe so you don’t miss out! Tarchelle will link to the Day 4 video, and so on throughout the next 25 days.

 

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