While the paper vs. digital planner debate may never end, many people agree on the importance of using a daily planner to keep their lives organized. Read on for six reasons why you should use a daily planner as well as tips for getting started.
1. Daily Planners Foster Better Time Management
Do you often feel there’s never enough time in your day for everything? If so, you may suffer from a lack of sufficient planning. Using a daily planner to map out your appointments and errands in advance will help ensure you don’t miss or overrun any meetings. It also can show you exactly how you spend your time each day. A quick glance at your planner can reveal what’s next, saving you valuable time trying to figure out the rest of your day.
2. Daily Planners Improve Your Memory
Writing down your appointments and errands by hand helps you retain them better in your memory. When you write something vs. typing it, your brain processes that information instead of mindlessly transcribing the details. This helps you absorb the information in a way that’s easier to recall later.
3. Daily Planners Boost Your Productivity
You can use a daily planner to boost your productivity at home and at work. Adding tasks and projects to your daily planner makes you accountable, increases your motivation, and helps you reduce any tendencies to procrastinate. You’ll soon notice you can work more efficiently with a clearer mind.
4. Daily Planners Help You Find Time for Yourself and Family
Many people find their days packed with work, school drop-offs and pickups, errands, appointments, meetings, and more. Time for fun, self-care, and family activities often falls to the bottom of the priority list as people try to squeeze as much as possible into 24 hours.
However, a daily planner can help you identify the free spots in your schedule you may otherwise overlook. Do you have a gap in your schedule from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursday nights? If so, perhaps you can use that time to attend a yoga class. Using a daily planner may actually help you find more time for yourself as well as your loved ones.
5. Daily Planners Reduce Stress
With a daily planner, you know exactly how you will spend your day. That insight can help reduce anxiety and stress because you won’t forget anything you already mapped out in your planner.
6. Daily Planners Serve as Your Personal Record-Keeper
A daily planner can help you keep track of everything you do — from your last dentist appointment to the number of times you dined out last month. You can even use it to plan your bill payments so you never miss another due date.
Some people also use their daily planner to manage their monthly budget. This practice can show you where all your money goes and how much more you can afford to spend before the next month.
Given all the benefits a daily planner can provide when it comes to organizing your life, it’s time to start using one. If you’ve never used a planner before, here are some tips to consider:
- No single planner layout or design works for everyone. Choose one that works for you. Do you want sections for note-taking and to-do lists? Do you want an area in which you can plan your daily meals? If your planner also features an attractive design, you’ll find yourself looking forward to using it more often.
- Take five to 10 minutes every night before going to bed to review your tasks for the next day and ensure you have everything written down in your planner. Consider also setting aside some time each Sunday to prepare for the week ahead.
- Initially, it may seem tough to open your planner every time you confirm an appointment or have a new item for your to-do list. Keep at it, however, and soon you’ll use your planner out of habit.
- Use your planner to keep track of nearly everything. That includes birthdays, anniversaries, doctor’s appointments, school events, sports practices, wish lists, payment reminders, home projects, and much more.
- Cross each completed activity off the to-do list in your planner for an extra boost of motivation.
- Don’t skimp on words. Write down full sentences in your planner that will inspire action.
- Ideally, use one planner for both your work and personal life. You can use different colored pens or highlighters for different categories so it’s easy to see your progress at a glance.
- Keep your planner handy at all times — at home, at work, and when you’re out having fun. A slim planner that easily fits into your bag makes this easy.
- If your planner includes a monthly section, use it to jot down your goals and aspirations for each month.
- Remember that you don’t need to fill every section for every day. Don’t try to add more activities to your day just because you have an empty section in your planner. The goal here is to simplify your life, not make it more exhausting.
- Block out some non-negotiable personal time every day to relax and recharge.
- Save some blank space each day for any random items that may pop up.
- Use colorful stickers to help make daily planning fun.
When used the right way, daily planners can help you achieve your goals, reach your full potential at work, and spend more time with friends and family. Click here for some of the best daily planners in the market today.