Planner Chat – My planning sessions

If you follow me on Instagram, you’re probably aware that I have joined the cult of #planneraddicts. Ever since I stumbled across Jen_Plans instagram feed, I’ve become absolutely obsessed with my Erin Condren planner (and the stickers to go with it). Now, these planners are not cheap. Well they’re actually not TOO BAD in the price area, but the shipping to get them to Australia is pretty steep. So you have to be absolutely sure that you want one, and that you’re going to use it often enough to get your money’s worth. I use mine every day, so I could easily justify the cost. If you’re keen to get one for yourself and would like to get 10% off, feel free to use my affiliate link to do so! Alright, back to business. I tend to sit down with my planner twice a week: once on Sunday and again mid-week on a Wednesday night, and this system works really well for me. I thought I’d take you through how I plan my week, step-by-step.

Monthly Spread – I start off my planning sessions by looking at the month overview to see what is coming up that week. I fill this section out either at the beginning of each month (with set dates like when my mortgage is due/birthdays etc), or as something comes up (a social event, a bill that is due etc). From here I get a good idea as to what the week is going to be like, and the kind of things I’ll need to plan for.

Pick out which stickers I want to use – Once I have a rough idea of what is happening that week, I’ll go through my collection of stickers and set aside any that I think I’ll want to use. There are some stickers that I every week, but if there is something special coming up I’ll pick something out to go with that particular event. I get a lot of questions about where I get my stickers from, and basically the answer is ETSY. Etsy is a real goldmine when it comes to planner stickers. I either search for ‘planner stickers’ and browse through the latest items listed, or I visit my favourite stores to see what they have available. I tend to purchase the majority of my stickers from KrissyAnneDesigns, LifePlannerWashiTape, KarolinasKrafts, AlexStudio, and ScribblePrintsCo etc.

Weekly To-Do List carry over + add – Each week I have a running to-do list, and I go through and carry across any of the items that I didn’t manage to check off for the week. Then I add any of my standard weekly chores that may not have been applicable for the previous week (like paying the mortgage, etc), and pop any new items that I also need to do that week. I love a good to-do list, and having this running list is great for me because I look at my planner so often, it’s a big reminder to get everything done.

Weather (Mon-Wed/Wed-Sun) – I check the weather app on my phone (I use ‘weather au’) and pop in the weather forecast for half of the week. Either Monday-Wednesday on my Sunday planning session, or Thursday-Sunday if I’m doing my mid-week check in. If there is a particular weather forecast that I need to plan for (extreme heat/storms etc), I tend to pop a little weather sticker along the top of the day as a heads-up for myself to plan the day accordingly.

Late Shifts or Days Off Monday-Friday – Along with the weather at the top of each day, I like to go through and mark any days of the week that I plan to stay late at work, and if I happen to have any days off of work I’ll make a note of those too. I tend to highlight these so they stand out a little bit more when I’m looking at the week as a whole.

Fill out week with standard events/to-dos + decorate with stickers – After that, I go through and fill out my week with any standard events that I have from week-to-week. These will be things like pay day, when my mortgage is due, days that I need to remember to water the potted plants in the garden, writing grocery lists, budgeting etc. I pop these in alongside any stickers that I feel like using for that particular week.

Fill out week with additional social events etc + decorate with stickers – Once I’ve filled out the standard events for the week I go through and add any new social events or weekly to-dos that I need to remember. These will be things like birthdays, social events that we need to attend, any bills that are due that week, or any travel dates that I need to remember.

Weekly Meals from monthly meal plan – The final step that I do is write out all of our meals for the week on the Erin Condren re-usable stickers that I purchased when I ordered my diary last year. These are great, but in my experience you can really only use them twice at the most before they stop working properly. I check my monthly meal plan, write out each meal for the week (or grab a previous week’s sticker if I can), and line them up in the bottom section of each day.

And that’s about it! If you have any questions about my planner, planning in general, or how I plan my week please let me know!

10 Thoughts on “Planner Chat – My planning sessions

  1. I am a bit of a planner addict too. Mine is not as nice as yours though! I’m stuck this year between my paper planner and planning things on the computer. I’ve got sort of half half which is not ideal but can’t commit 100% either way. I love my Outlook program at work.

  2. This was such a heavenly read : I’m ordered a planner soon (not an EC though) and love the way you’ve set everything out in yours – I have to be honest and say I will definitely be stealing some of your habits! I am such a paper planner girl, last year I misplaced mine for the last month it had inside and I felt so out of it in every aspect of my life, actually quite upset and hated the feeling of not having it. #planneraddicts

  3. I’m so excited for my EC planner to arrive, thank you so much for this, I love how you lay it out!

  4. I feel as if I still don’t know what stickers denote which or what I should mark – rent day? Payday? I’m so behind.. I got myself a Typo planner, and its gold and shiny. Suits me just fine!

    • Jessica on February 1, 2015 at 11:18 am said:

      I tend to use stickers for the regular occurring things in my life- mortgage/ pay day/ groceries/ movie nights etc. And have just fleshed that base collection out over time with my browsing of Etsy every week lol

  5. Argh! You and your enabling.

    My teaching/tech support role is going to be very varied this year, I’m going to be busy and I’ve committed to making running, yoga and stretching a habit so I knew I was going to have to supplement my effective electronic system with something that combines all my commitments in a whole week view and makes me more accountable to get things done on specific days.

    Thanks to this post I went on a research bender and have settled on a customised Plum Paper design from Etsy because there’s certain elements of the EC that I don’t like. Unfortunately it won’t arrive until after school starts, but that’s ok.

    So thanks heaps! I had no idea such customisable planners existed from so many suppliers. I hate normal teacher planners, most diaries and electronic planners are just not great for planning a week at a time for me. Have you found that too?

    • Jessica on February 1, 2015 at 11:17 am said:

      You’re welcome!

      I don’t like electronic planners in general, I find that I just never use them. I don’t know what makes them different to a paper planner, but I reject them lol

  6. Pingback: How I use my Plum Planner (and initial thoughts) | the belle lumiere

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