Way, way back in the day when I was a high school student, I used a paper planner, because that's all that was available then, haha! In all seriousness, though, I LOVED the planner that I bought in my school's tiny bookstore. The layout was just perfect for my needs, and, again in all seriousness, that planner was one of the handful of fond memories I have from high school. I lived by that planner. I bought the same one every year, and when I started college, I was actually sad that I had to go out and buy a different type of a planner. Yes, I was that hardcore about my planner, OK? LOL.
Once I'd graduated college, I didn't feel the need for an actual planner as much. I took to jotting notes on whatever scrap pieces of paper were handy, and that "system" was good enough for quite a long time. At one point I did own one of the Palm PDA models, but it turned out to be overkill.
Fast forward to the present, when there are times when I need to write myself a note for . . . just about everything. I used Evernote for a while and was pretty happy with it, but sometimes I just want to make a quick reminder without having to open the app, start a new note, tap it in, and remember to save at the end. I don't know if I'm just lazy, but that seems like a bit of work to write down something that I need to buy on my next trip to the grocery store.
I'd been seeing Erin Condren's Life Planners mentioned everywhere on social media, and the buzz made me curious to check them out. There are some really beautiful designs, and I loved the idea of decorating the pages. I had no idea that decorating your planner, kind of like you would a scrapbook, was even a thing. It is a brilliant idea, though; in fact, and this is gonna sound weird, but I used to keep my old planners as mementos of the time they covered. (Alas, I got rid of them during one of those if-you're-not-actually-using-it-you're-throwing-it-out cleaning purges.) So maybe I was on to something back then, although adding stickers and stamps to the pages never occurred to me.
Back in July, I finally decided to give paper planning another go. The stores here were stocked with school supplies already, so I thought I had a good chance of at least getting my hands on a student planner to get me through the rest of this year, and then I could get a regular planner for 2016. I was surprised to find Target stocked with all kinds of planners, even ones not specifically designed for students, that went all the way through the end of 2016. So I left Target with this planner in hand and feeling like the planner gods had, er, planned this:
Once I had my planner, obviously I needed a few accessories to jazz it up a bit. At the same time, I didn't want to go crazy buying stickers and other embellishments. Stamps, which are reusable, seemed like a good compromise, and when I spotted a stamp set in Michael's that actually had a "Blog" stamp, I knew I'd found what I was looking for:
Washi tape seems to be a must-have for planner decorating, and so I picked up a multi-pack of that as well, along with these stamps that I found in the Michael's bargain bin:
Since I started using a paper planner again, I really do feel like I'm better organized. For whatever reason, writing down a task in the planner makes me more inclined to do it, lol. And with my trusty "Blog" stamp, I find blog planning less stressful when I break things down into more manageable pieces. This planner has a very generous Notes section in the back, and I like using it to brainstorm future post ideas.
For the $15 or so I spent on the planner, I definitely think that it's more than paid for itself. Are any of you guys planner fans? If so, do you have a preference for paper or digital, or do you use a combination of both?