Your Franklin Planner is designed to help you manage all of your activities and goals, whether your days are loaded with business meetings or baseball games. For most of us our days are filled with an eclectic mix of events—usually a conglomerate of unequal parts blended into something we call life. It can be messy.
Often our planners resemble that muddled part of our lives—taking on an appearance that makes them difficult to decipher. So how do we manage such different aspects of our lives in one small planner without it looking as jumbled inside as we sometimes feel?
We have a few suggestions.
Separate your work activities from your other events.
If you leave a couple of blank lines on your Prioritized Daily Task List between the tasks you need to perform for work and the tasks you plan to accomplish at home, it will be easier to keep track of what is happening when. Other people have suggested writing your tasks for work on your Personalized Daily Task List from the top down and writing your tasks for home from the bottom up.
Washi tape is a creative way to sort and separate events. This thin tape comes in several colors and patterns and it makes a fun embellishment for your planner while serving a great purpose. You could use it to divide groups of tasks on your planner pages or use different colors of tape for the different roles you play each day—orange for work, blue for home, green for community events, etc. Plus, it’s easy to remove without damaging your paper.
Not every planner has a Prioritized Daily Task List, so you can use your washi tape in the Notes section to accomplish the same thing.
Use different colored pens.
Use different colored pens to show different people’s schedules—Blue: Nate, Green: Emily, etc.—or use different colors for work, home, and community events. Giving yourself an instant visual image of what events carry the most weight in your day can help you determine your priorities and work toward balance. For example: if you use black for work, green for family, and blue for church or community events, and you notice that you have days packed full of black, you can try to work more family time into that day.
Use colored tabs or flags
Use colored tabs or page flags to separate the events of your day—this is for work, this is for home. You may want to keep events separate on your pages and then use your colored page flags for each segment. You can also use different colored highlighters to mark the activities for home and work etc.
Use a Progressive Task List
If you have several events that span several days, or if you have some activities that you need to accomplish each day and you don’t want to forget them, add a Progressive Task List to your planner. The Progressive Task List fits inside your pagefinder so you only need to write those tasks once, then they follow you from day to day until they’re complete. It’s a great way to reduce redundant clutter on your planner pages
It can be difficult to stay ahead of your schedule if your life is so busy that your planner is hard to follow. Hopefully these few hints have given you some inspiration and sparked some great ideas of your own.
If you have any unique ways that you keep your planner neat and orderly amid the chaos of your life, we’d love to hear from you.