Planner is a very personal thing. Each one of us has its own way to use it. However, today, I want to tell you about my personal experience. I will tell you everything, which planner I use, how I use it, my daily routine to stick with my action plan and the results I am getting. Important to say that there is no right or wrong, but there is always a better way of doing things. My intention is to provide you with practical tips and tools that might inspires you to find “your” best way to use a planner. In the end, all that we are looking for is to be more productive, efficient and achieve our goals quicker.
My Dear Planner
Yes, I love my planners. They are part of my daily life and without them I would be lost and get WAY less done. I use different planners for different things: one for gratitude, one for journal and my goal planner to name a few. However, I will focus here on Goal Planner as it is the most common and the one I use the most on a daily basis. Let’s get started.
CLEVER FOX PRO. This is the Goal Planner I’m using at the moment. I have decided to try it out after have done some research in the beginning of the year. I have to say that it really became my “dear planner”. It has everything I need, going from self-discovery, daily rituals, vision board, life goals (1, 5, 10 years) to monthly and weekly goals. I will be honest, it is a lot of effort to populate the first part but, there is no need to do it all at once. I din’t. Take your time. I assure you, the effort will pay off.
If you are wondering if it is a paper version, the answer is positive, I do like to use the old fashion paper planners. That is what works for me as I like to see it, touch it and physically tick activities I have completed. It is such a good feeling see your progress, what you have accomplished. I feel proud of myself and knowing that I’m moving towards my dream goal.
How Do I Use My Planner
Here is the trick. To stick with a planner it needs to be PRACTICAL and SIMPLE.
Basically, I use my goal planner to track my life goal, my monthly and weekly goals, plus daily activities. I will go through each of them below.
- My Life Goal/Self-discovery – In the end of the year (usually Dec) I have per habit to do my annual review. It is a moment of reflexion. I asses the year that is ending and I think about what I REALLY want for the next year. It is in that moment that I review my core values, my life purpose, my vision board and my goals. I use those techniques highlighted in article Why do we have goals to define goals for each area of my life (Career, Relationship, Money…). Let say my yearly goal is to “Publish a Book”. It will be highlighted on my vision board and in my goal planner. I found it great to have it all in the first pages of my Planner. I read it often, not to change it, although I will do if it doesn’t resonate with me anymore, but the main purpose is to remind myself which direction I am going to and what is important in my life. Furthermore, it helps me to stay focus on what matters and just engage in projects that are aligned with my life purpose, values and dream life goal. This exercise is very intense but is quite good. It is our life, our time is limited. We need to focus on what matters, on what makes us feel happy. In the end we are here to grow and be happy, whatever happiness means to you.
- My Monthly Goals: On the last week of each month I take the time to sit down, relax and review the month that is ending (wins, lessons, progress made, tasks not accomplished and things to improve). Then, I define what I want to achieve in the next month. What are the goals that will bring me closer to my dream life goal. Continuing with the Book example, I could define the monthly goal as “Write Chapter 1”. You might have other goals, list all of them. Next, I like to highlight on my monthly plan by when I want to achieve each one of them. It will be the base for my weekly plan. If needed breakdown your goals (I.e. write 5 pages by the end of first week, 10 pages on the second week and so on). In additional to that, on the planner I am using, it also encourages you to define new skills & habits you want to learn, distractions to avoid, places and people to see, and one thing you always wanted to do. Isn’t that amazing?
- My Weekly Goals: On a weekly basis, generally on Sundays, I review my previous week (wins, lessons, things to improve) and then I define my weekly goals that will help me to move towards my monthly goal, and therefore, to my dream life goal. It is quicker and it doesn’t take me more than 30 min as, in this part, I don’t spend too much time defining my daily activities. All I do is to define my daily goal for each one of the days of the week, which is aligned with my monthly goal. On the example above, I would have a weekly goal of “Write 5 Pages or Topic XYZ”. Other thing that I love to do on a weekly basis is to track habits that I am implementing and things I am excited about for that week. It motivates me.
- My Daily Activities: On a daily basis, in the evening or sometimes in the morning. I define/list all the activities that I need to get done in that day. Then, I prioritize the ones that will move myself towards my weekly, monthly and life goal (i.e. writing should be prioritized over cleaning the house). Next, I ACT upon my plan, focusing in one activity at the time. I like to write my daily activities with pencil so it is easier to erase it and change it as needed. You know, life is happening now and other things might come up during the day. Even so, the most important thing is to keep your focus on the activities that matter the most.
This is a summary of what is the best way to use a planner in my experience. Hope it inspires you.
As you might have noticed by now, I’m very goal-oriented. Planners for me make all the difference. It helps me on a daily/weekly basis to keep on top of my activities and move myself towards my dream life goal. The way I use it helps me to be more focus, boost my productivity and to have more energy for the things that really matter in my life. I’m really happy and truly recommend you to give it a try. I think you will be surprised by the results you will get.
Tips & Insights
- Define your life purpose, vision board, life goal – it helps you to live in harmony with the Univeral Laws and with yourself.
- Choose a planner that suits you – a simple and practical tool that helps you to be focus and boost your productivity.
- Define your action plan on a monthly, weekly and daily basis.
- Make it simple and a habit.
- Take action – Don’t spend too much time planning. Remember you need to ACT upon your plan. Get your tasks done.
- Track your progress and celebrate your wins.
- Have fun – a planner can be a very pleasant activity and you can lose track of time playing around.
I would love to hear from your. Which planner are you using? How do you use your planner? Share your experience below and help others to be inspired by you.