Tuesday, April 7, 2015

How to choose a Planners | Part 3 - How I use my planners and some tipson using it

*This is a super long post, I'm going to split it into 3-4 posts. Click on this link for all the post *

My Intentions - How do I use my planner
So many individuals have different ways of using it, here are just some ways they use their planners.

I'm currently using faux leather Filofax Domino A5 for my work, and personal filofax - Patent Personal Compact Duck Egg (a minty blue color) for personal use.

For me, because I don't like the look of the plain filofax pages, I choose to find pretty printables online. I love Marcy Penner printable because of the simplicity and the touch of blue and yellow which are my happy colours. Hence I print them myself and punch the holes myself. (using the 6 hole puncher form amazon, i used to use Crop-a-dile)

Mine are mainly for work purposes, hence I have the following sections. (To understand this , it might be good for me to say that I teach in a collage)

*A tip here, since the planners have many different sections, it will be good to know what type of information to put in which section. Personally I always have problems with this because I always get confused. So when I have this piece of information, I don't know where to put it. Or when I have this piece of information to check, I don't know where to find it! Now I do this, each section gets more and more detailed. I start planning from the begining, to the end. The yearly first, then the monthly, the weekly then the daily. At the beginning of each year, you need to do your year overview planning. Then each month you need to do your monthly planning, but before doing any planning for the month, check the year planner and import/transfer all the information from the year planner into your month first. When the week is near, you import the information from the monthly planner to the weekly planner, i usually write these information on the top left hand corner of the weekly information.

1. Empty Monthly spreads
I use the empty monthly 2 page spread as a WEEKLY planner to plan and record the topics and specific questions that I intend to go through in class . So each row is a class, and each column is a day. Since I have only 3 classes, I use the odd rows to write down what I plan to do, and I used the even rows to write down what I eventually did. So that I can keep track of what I have already done and what i missed out.

2. Monthly and weekly pages
The new Marcy Penner printables have the months and weekly separated, meaning to say each month have a monthly spread, and a weekly spread lumped together according to months, instead of having all the months together and then the weeks together. I find it a little hard to get used to but sometimes I just shift around. I seldom use the monthly spreads, sometimes to only jot down big EVENTS. For the weekly spreads, I write down things I have to do that day, and the classes I have, with the time indicated. All the infomration in monthly spread will also be in the weekly spreads.

At the side columns of the monthly view, I wrote down important schedules and name of the week with respect to the college calendar

I decorated the weekly spread quite abit with stamps and colorful chalk inks from prima. Love the colors of the ink . Some weeks are more colorful than the other weeks , other weeks are more or less empty. I do them as I'm inspired to do , it's an additional something that makes me feel happier when looking at my list of things to do, but I'm totally fine if the pages are empty too. I keep in mind this planner is here to help me keep organize , not to distract me or for me to add "decorate planner" in to my to-do list

3. Daily Calendar
My daily calendar tab is for those long days with lots of task, and that I need a space to organise my thoughts and schedule , say every hourly or half hourly. (Otherwise, the weekly spreads serves me well). that is to say, I dont have fix dates on each page in this section, I use them on and off, depending on my schedule on the day.

Suppose I have a hectic schedule and to-do list, I will sit down in my office, and first thing first I will plan how I will spend my day in order to get things done.

4. Meeting Notes
The next section is something new to me. now that I'm working, this section is essential. We have weekly meeting with the company and department, hence I need a specific area for me to record the details. Sometimes there isn't much, but each page is dedicated to a meeting, and they are chronologically recorded, this way I have a backlog of what has been discussed and can keep track

5. To do list 
To do list is my dumping ground for any sort of list. Currently I have a to do (bucket) list that i update  every now and then, and once most of the things are done and filled up, I move the undone stuff into a new page and continue adding to it. I don't go by month or week. I used to try but it doesn't work , most of the things are very flexible and I tend to (intentionally) procrastinate on some errands that are not urgent.

I have the reading list as well, for a reference of what books I plan to read

6. Reflections/diary
This section is a place for me to record some dos and donts after conducting each tutorial, for professional development purposes :) It's good to be reflective.

7. Notes
I observe others lessons often , also as a form of professional development. I need a place to record everything I learn, hence just a free style lined notebook will do. I added some lined papers at the back. As and when, I will add notes inside. They are chronological , otherwise they are not organised in any means. One thing I consider doing is to read through them end of every 3 months, take out the papers and transfer the important points to soft copy documents. (I keep track of alot of things on Evernote too :)

I have 3 colors of lined sheets, the white ones are for learning, yellow ones are for random (personal stuff that I thought of but have no place other than this notebook to jot down ) and blue ones are for randoms but work related (say tuition and etc)

That's it for my work planner! I hope these give you some insights as to what kind of planners you want to get :) Thanks for stopping by. I have the last installation of the planner series in the making. So keep a look out for that :)

(P.s. As of now that I'm typing this blogpost, I'm actually trying out a bullet journal style/system of planning , just in my moleskin notebook, for everyday/personal/scrapbook planning. it has bee going well, and I shall see how it serves me and come back to share if it work :)

Do let me know what's more you'd like to know , or share any resources you have regarding planning :) Share in the comments below! Till next time :)

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