I struggle with ADD, anxiety, and poor time management skills. One thing I do to help with all of this is using a planner. I’ve shared it in the past but I’m always updating it to make sure it keeps working for me.
I have owned and looked at many of the planners that are available but all had things I didn’t need and were missing things I did want. A few years ago I decided to make a DIY planner and that is still what I’m using. I love being able to put exactly what I need in it.
To make the DIY planner I simply used a three-ring binder I already owned and covered it with some cute scrapbook paper. I keep most of the pages in page protectors and just punch holes in the ones I need to update on a regular basis.
My binder is broken up into three categories; planner/household, blog/work, and holiday. I will take you into each of these sections.
- Goals– I keep my personal goals, relationship goals, and work goals on this page. I like to keep it somewhere I will see often so I remember what I’m working on.
- Birthday & Anniversary Calendar- This is where I keep track of birthdays and anniversaries to put into my monthly calendar. (The one I have doesn’t seem to be available anymore.)
- Monthly Calendar Pages– On these pages I put appointments, events, birthdays, holidays, and other reminders.
- Weekly Calendar Pages– On these pages I list my to-dos, things I can’t forget, errands, and phone calls I need to make for the week.
- Goal Work Sheets– On these I keep track of my weight loss goals, exercise goals, reading goals, and date night goals.
- Weekly Meal Plan– I like this sheet because you use Post-Its to plan so I can move them around if our plans change.
- Meal Planning- I simply write down a month’s worth of meals on this sheet. I shop only once a month so this helps me plan my grocery shopping. (This is being updated and will be available to print soon!)
- Freezer Cooking– I haven’t used this yet but I hope to start soon and get back to freezer cooking.
- Cleaning Schedule- This has my daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and semi-annual/annual cleaning schedules. (This is being updated and will be available to print soon!)
- Date Nights- I like to keep lists of ideas for date nights to help make sure we do make time for them. I have free, cheap, moderate, and high cost ideas. I also list events we may be interested in. (This is being updated and will be available to print soon!)
- Cleaning Recipes- I make most of my own cleaners so I keep my recipes here for when I need to make more. (This is being updated and will be available to print soon!)
- Project To-Do List– We are trying to fix up our house so this is where I keep track of our current projects.
- Income– Where I track my income from blogging, freelance writing, and any other freelance work I do.
- Expenses– This is where I track expenses for my blog and other work.
- Editorial Calendar– A monthly calendar where I keep track for blog posts.
- Reviews & Giveaways- Here I keep track of any reviews or giveaways I run.
- Social Media Planner– I haven’t used this yet but I hope to start so I remember to use social media more efficiently.
- Blog Sponsors– I track any ads I have here.
- Blog To Do List– This is where I keep track of anything I need to do for the blog, other than blogging.
- Blog Ideas– Where I write down all of the ideas I have.
- Blog Series Planner– When I have a series I want to run I use this sheet.
- Blog Stats Tracker– I haven’t used this yet but I want to start. This is a good way to see if what you are doing is what people want.
- I also have a section with pages for the music business my family started but we are making changes to the business so this section will need some changing.
I shared my holiday planner before Christmas. It hasn’t changed since then so check out that post if you are interested.
In the very back I have an address book and then on the back of the binder I clip some scratch paper which I use for my daily to-do lists.
I have a little pouch I keep with me when using the planner. This is what I keep in it.
Another thing I’m hoping to add to my binder this year is a price sheet for groceries. I want to do a better job of figuring out the best places to buy things. If I come up with a good printable for this I will be sure to share it. I’m also planning a series on saving money when shopping for real food.
I’d love to hear what you use for a planner. Do you make your own or buy one? Let me know in the comments below, you can also tag me in photos of your planner on Instagram. And check out my Pinterest board for more planner printables.
DIY not your thing? Check out my thoughts on the Create 365 Happy Planner.