I’m in a bit of a planner slump at the moment.
Summer has been hard on my routines. Things I’d been doing consistently for months – drinking lots of water, taking vitamins, getting up early – well, I kind of fell off the wagon with them this summer.
Using my planner was one of the casualties.
I think I needed a break from tracking all of the things. But now, I’m getting back on track. Back in my groove. Back in the saddle. It’s planner time!
I’m still loving my traveler’s notebook planner system. But after taking a small break from using it, I’ve decided it needs a bit of a makeover. A few of my notebook inserts just aren’t working for me anymore. It’s time for a bit of a revamp.
And since I’m reassessing what exactly I need and want to have in my planner, I thought I’d share my plans with you. Just in case you happen to be searching for ideas.
I’m a list-maker. I cannot live without lists. Lists for everything…groceries, errands, homeschool tasks, future plans and goals…the list of lists is endless. 😉 The great thing about using lists is that no matter the brand or style of planner you choose to use, lists can work for you. It’s a beautiful thing.
13 Lists You Need In Your Planner
If there’s one thing I’ve learned about myself in recent years, it’s that if it doesn’t get written down, it doesn’t get done. This is true for basically every facet of my life, from remembering to buy stamps to remembering to homeschool my children. 😉
Thus, if there are certain things I want to accomplish, I HAVE to write them down. Listing out my goals keeps me accountable but also serves as a reminder for the things that I want to grown and improve in.
In January I make goals (not resolutions!) for the year, based on the different areas of my life in which I want to improve (spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental).
2. Books You Want To Read
I don’t know about you, but I always have a list of books I want to read that’s a mile long. Keeping that list in my planner is awesome because there are few things in the world as satisfying as crossing a book off you’re list that you’ve been intending to read for a while.
3. Books to Check Out From the Library
Do you borrow lots of books from the library? We borrow a ton of library books for homeschooling…there are always books we need to check out from the library. So I note them in my planner.
Listen. Going to the library with my kids is no joke. My son turns into a Tasmanian devil every single stinking time we go. I have no idea why. It’s very vexing. So the name of my library game is usually, “Get in and out as fast as humanly possible.” I even write the Dewey decimal number down so I that can go straight to them in the library, thereby allowing us to make our exit as quickly as possible. Easy peasy.
4. Master Meal List
This is a super valuable list that I’ll definitely be including again, but with some updates. Basically, I’ve made a list of all our favorite meal options for breakfast, lunch, and supper, and also a few snacks. This has been a HUGE time saver in meal planning, because I can quickly see and remember our favorite meals and just pick and choose from the list.
I’ll update it in my next planner, just because it doesn’t hurt to add in some different meal options. Plus, it’s almost soup season! I love soups. I can’t wait to get them in heavy rotation in my meal plan again.
5. Gratitude List
A really great way to cultivate an attitude of thankfulness. You can do it either daily or weekly. It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these and I’m looking forward to starting one again.
6. Gift Planning
I shop for Christmas gifts all year long, which makes it easier on my budget and my sanity. Keeping a gift list is super-important in keeping me organized and on track with Christmas shopping.
A variation of this list, which I also do, is to have gift lists for your family, like your kids. That way, if they mention something they’d like or you see something online that may be a possible gift, you can jot it down and remember for future occasions.
7. Blog Post Ideas
If you blog, having a running list of topics to blog about is super handy. This can definitely be used for any social media platform you use regularly. A great way to keep all your blog related ideas in one place.
8. Prayer List
This is a new list I’m excited to include in my planner! I love the idea of having a place to write down any prayer requests that God lays on my heart during the day.
9. Netflix shows to watch/movies to see
I’m always on the lookout for good shows to watch on Netflix…especially for my kids. This is a great way to jot down potential shows that come up in conversations or that I see mentioned online.
10. “When did I last…”
This list is super helpful for me. I use it to track the tasks that I don’t do frequently, which helps me remember that I need to do them MORE frequently: mopping the floors, vacuuming out the vehicles, changing toothbrushes, sweeping the basement, cleaning the oven, washing the cabinets, etc.
11. Needs and wants
I’m an impulse shopper. ONe way I’ve learned to slow myself down in buying things impulsively is to use a “Needs & Wants” list. It forces me to determine if a purchase is really a NEED, or if it’s just a want. And it also gives me a cool-down period. I make myself write down the object of my desire, and then I wait a week or month or two. Often I’ll end up realizing that something I thought I couldn’t live without isn’t really that important, after all.
12. Self-care list
When I’m feeling stressed out, sad, mad, tired…I turn to this list. What fills you up? Write it down and remind yourself to do it when you feel out of sorts!
13. Capture list
I saved the best list for last. Capture lists are the BEST lists because they help me sleep at night.
What is a capture list? A list for ALL THE THINGS. You know, those fleeting thoughts that pop into your head…all the “I should…” and “I can’t forget to…” and “I need to…” tasks in your life. HAVE A DEDICATED SPOT in your planner and WRITE THEM DOWN. Get them out of your head. Trust me. It’s the best feeling to know that it’s out of your head and in your planner.