Setting up for weekly success

I have had many different planners over the last twenty years. While their format, color, and size may have changed, one thing has always remained the same.  My weekly planning time.  Every weekend I carve a little time out just for me to plan the upcoming week.  My weekly planning has happened while we were out and about in the car, in the stands of a sporting event, while waiting for the teen to finish their job, or even on a friend’s dining table while we visit.  Most often my planning happens at the dining table while I cook dinner on Saturday or Sunday night.

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I start with my blank week in the planner.  I have a few stickers that I use to track things each week.  First I add in my meal plan stickers, blog tracker stickers, and a few pretty background stickers.  I like to leave plenty of blank space for adding in appointments, lists, and inspirational quotes throughout the week.

Once I have those put in, I start to fill in the appointments and reoccuring items for the week.  Anytime I make an appointment I write it on the monthly view of my planner.  This week, I only had a couple of appointments that needed to be filled in.  I love easy weeks!  Then I look at my meal plan and choose meals that fit with our schedule.  If the day is full of appointments and things to do, I choose a crockpot meal.  If I know I’ll have plenty of time for cooking, I’ll choose a more involved dinner to cook.  Then I look at my blog plans for the week.  I like to have a reminder for well thought out instagram photos and facebook posts.  I don’t want to be obnoxious, but I do want to get my blog out there!

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This week, I had plenty of white space left.  Throughout the week I will add in inspirational quotes that I see, funny memories, and lists of things to do.  I also love to draw zentangles and mandalas.  I use my planner to draw and sketch in.  I often use my planner as my journal.  I love going back to previous years planners and read what was happening in our lives.

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By the end of the week, I will have filled in most of that white space.  Some weeks will be completely filled.  Others will be like this one, with some blank space still available.  A planner is a personal thing.  Each one is going to look different and that is how it should be!

As a final thought, I’d like to talk about the expense of a weekly planner.  You don’t need a fancy desk with glorious pens, stickers, and washi tape.  You don’t have to spend a lot of money on Etsy for custom stickers.  You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars on a fancy planner.  My current planner cost me only $25.  I have had more expensive planners.  I enjoyed them greatly.  However, I want to be clear that this is not just a hobby that I spend money on.  I really do enjoy my weekly planner time, and I do view it as a hobby.  For this week’s layout, I used all free downloadable stickers that I printed and cut myself.  I admit, I like a pretty planner.  Just remember your planner is for keeping your life organized, not just displaying pretty stickers and layouts.

Come back next weekend when I’ll be talking about different types of planners.  Finding the right planner for you is really important!  If you don’t like it, or it isn’t formatted for your needs, you won’t use it.  That would be sad.

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