The 5 Elements of Your Planning System

The 5 Elements of Your Planning System

You may have noticed that when we talk about our planners we call them planning systems. Why do we do that? Because the Franklin Planner is more than a to-do list, it is a system to help you organize, prioritize, and recall information from your life. Think of your Franklin Planner as a tool box. Inside the box are tools for specific tasks that will keep you moving toward your goals.

Each tool has an important role, so when you are creating your own planning system, be sure to gather the following items:

1. Planner

Scientific studies indicate that you remember better if you take notes with a paper and pen, so paper planners are the ideal planning solutions. You might see the word refills or inserts in reference to the Franklin Planner. That’s just because our ring-bound planners fit inside a binder—but they’re all planners.

You have some decisions to make when choosing your planner.

Pick a size:

Pocket: 3.5” w x 6” h

Perfect for those who travel light and plan on the run.

Compact: 4.25” w x 6.75” h

More room for notes and big ideas. Fits great in a purse or tote.

Classic: 5.5” w x 8.5” h

Our most popular size travels well, offers great variety, and space.

Monarch: 8.5” w x 11” h

Write big and take extra notes. This planner size can take it all.

Pick a format

Daily: If your day is loaded with appointments, meetings, project notes, and people, a daily format will keep it all together.

One Page Per Day: Maybe you don’t need as much paper. One-page-per-day planners give you all the features of the Daily format with less bulk.

Weekly: A weekly planner is ideal if you work on large or ongoing projects, and you prioritize your important tasks by days of the week rather than by time of day.

Monthly: If you are just keeping track of appointments, a monthly calendar planner is ideal for you.

Pick a Binding

Ring-bound: Ring-bound planners have drill-holes and round-corners and are designed for use with our ring-bound binders. These are the most versatile planners allowing you to add forms, tabs, and other pages wherever you’d like. This creates endless ways to customize your planner to you. If you choose a ring-bound planner, we recommend carrying all 12 monthly tabs and 3 months of pages in your binder for the most efficient planning.

Wire-bound: Wire-bound planners are held together with a wire-o spine. It’s a simple planner solution with no assembly required and works great for you right out of the box. It’s a great option for people who want less bulk to carry.

Saddle-Stitched: Saddle-stitched planners are our newest offering. These thin planners are stapled in the center. To keep them thin, the year is divided in two six-month booklets. It’s designed for use with our beautiful Travelers Cover. Sturdy elastics keep the planner booklets in place and the cover securely closed.

2. Binders and Covers

Binders: A binder is an organized, ringed, carrying case to hold your ring-bound planner. The binder rings come in sizes from .625” to 2”.  Binders are crafted from quality materials ranging from luxury leather to ballistic nylon. All of our binders offer pen loops and organized pockets for papers and cards.

How much paper can the binder hold? It depends on the size of planner you pick. Click here is a page for quick reference.

Covers: Covers are similar to binders but do not have rings. They are used with wire-bound planners. Covers offer all the features you’ll find in a binder from pen loops to card pockets, and they’re fashioned from the finest materials.

3. Pagefinder

As simple as it sounds, a Pagefinder is essential. Many planner users have more than one because they can get you directly to where you need to be. There are several options of Pagefinders: our Pouch Pagefinder, Designer Pagefinders with creative colors and imagery, and even magnifying Pagefinders that double as a reading aid. For something a little different, you can get our Travelers Bookmark. It comes in several colors and is crafted from durable elastic and leather.

4. Storage Cases

What do you do with the paper you aren’t carrying in your binder? Our sturdy storage cases provide a streamlined place to secure your past and future planning pages—and they make it super easy to find important information from two months ago or even several years ago. Keep your storage case where you do your planning, and it will be an instant reference whenever you need it.

5. Forms and Tabs

Customizing your planner is easy with forms and tabs. They’re an ideal way to focus your efforts toward specific goals from financial management to party planning. To get a jump start, our Starter Pack has several forms and inserts that will get you going in the right direction from the beginning. It includes a Pouch Pagefinder, 52 Weekly Compass Cards, Tabs with pre-printed and blank labels, Address/Phone Tabs, Monthly Budget Worksheets, and Personal Management Tabs with loads of helpful information.

When it comes down to it, your entire planning system fits in one hand and functions like a simple, super organized notebook. Just remember, it’s a lot more than that. It’s your ticket to where you truly hope to go.

5 Replies to “The 5 Elements of Your Planning System”

  1. I took the course and our whole staff was on the system until we retired in 2006. I am back in business and don’t know what I did with my stuff. I am interested in the classic size, one page starter pack with the lowest price small ring binder. What do you recommend and what is the price? I am in Canada.

  2. I carry a set of twenty 3.5” w x 6” h in my front blouse pocket. It’s ideal and great for on the go planning.

  3. I too have used these wonderful planners for over 30 yrs. after taking one of your classes. I tried another type. Didn’t make the grade so after a few frustrating months I’m back to Franklin Covey again & very happy. Thank you

  4. The 2-page day view is my go-to format: Trackable data is jotted in real time on the left ‘day’ page. The right page fills fast, with calls notes, tasks status, local events, and of course, when I sync up with my family’s busy schedules.

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