I’ve been buying planners for well over a decade now. As much as I have strived to have my life together in one pretty package, I have struggled for the same amount of years to keep my planner up to date. So in those ten years or so, I have tried out a planner or two to see if maybe it wasn’t my lack of discipline, rather the lack of style and compatibility that was the problem. I have to say, I recently have gotten back into planning and have been able to stick with it for a few months. I definitely have my own system in place that probably isn’t everyone else’s cup of tea, but it’s one that I have had to craft and experiment with.
Finding the right planner and planning system is no easy task. If you’re anything like me, you may have to spend hours upon hours every December (or August, if you’re a teacher like me) scrounging around the internet, going site to site, trying to weigh prices, with style, with what you think your routine will be. As someone who has spent way too many hours doing that, way too much money, and have tested out way too many planners, I have put together a list of all the planners I have tried over the past few years and how I found them most helpful. Hopefully this may aid you on your own planning journey and may dwindle the hours needed to make your next planner decision.
If you have a busy schedule… try the Passion Planner.
The Passion Planner breaks down each week by the half an hour to keep you on track. Before each month, this planner allows you to draft out your goals and reflect on the progress you’ve made. I’ve wanted to love this planner for years; I’ve even bought two of them before! Unfortunately, this template was far too constricting to me. If you want to plan out your life and stick to a schedule, then this is the perfect system for you.
If you want something classic…. try Erin Condren’s Life Planner.
If you know anything about the planning community, then you’ve probably heard of Erin Condren. Her planner’s are now a classic and offer a wide array of options for every planner out there. Being one of the pricier options in this list, you will get solid quality, beautiful designs, and chances to make your planner your own. Erin Condren’s site also offers a ton of accessories and add ons that are tailored to their planners. I personally own the hardbound version of the Life Planner which is at a lower price and with less frills.
If you want something customizable…. try the Plum Paper Planner.
If you love Erin Condren but want to have more customizable options, then the Plum Paper Planner is for you. This planner’s spiral bound book looks almost identical to the Life Planner on the outside; however, on the inside, the Plum Planner allows you to edit what each box and column is designated for. You also have the choice to have add ons at the end of each month and the end of the planner itself. I love this planner but the only con is that it takes forever to ship and can get on the pricier side if you have a lot of customizations.
If you want something that focuses on the day-to-day… try Day Designer’s Flagship Planner.
One of my favorite aspects of this planner is that is gives you a little bit of everything for every day. Each page is it’s own day with a schedule for plans, a to do list for everything you have to check off, and a place for notes for anything else you may need to remember. For someone who has to focus on each day, this is a wonderful jack-of-all-trades planner. Day Designer carries a beautiful flagship planner on their website for a pretty penny, although they are also sold in different sizes, price points, and backings at places like Target, Amazon, you name it.
If you want something to help you organize more than just your calendar… try the Happiness Planner.
The happiness planner’s layout is a lot like Day Designer’s. In a beautiful, compact, coiled book, the happiness planner gives you a chance to jot down and keep track of most everything going on in your day-to-day life. It looks beyond the schedule and to-do list though and allows you to plan out your health routines, daily gratefulness, and start thinking about tomorrow. This planner may be a great step in between planning and keeping a diary by allowing you to remember and write down the important things going on in your life for you to look back on.
If you want something that has less boundaries and more creativity… try starting your own Bullet Journal.
Bullet journaling has recently become very popular and for good reason! Usually with dotted or blank pages, bullet journaling allows you to create and plan in whatever style you choose. Many people turn to bullet journaling for many reasons: the endless choice and creativity, not finding a layout or style they want (so they make their own!), or when they use a planner for more than just planning, perhaps as a diary, tracker, you name it. I definitely recommend watching some videos or following creators on instagram if you’re interested in starting your own.
Let me know if you want to see which planner I use and how I use it! Also, which planner do you use?