Hand-Written Planners Make Me So Happy {and a few goals}

By January 4, 2018 January 22nd, 2018 8 Comments

I was positively giddy when I spied this in Target (can Target do no wrong?) whilst last-minute Christmas shopping in Arizona. Side note: It was 70 and sunny there. Quite blissful. At the moment, New Hampshire is getting with a “Bombogenesis: the Perfect Storm of Cold, Gusting Wind, and Snow.” Did you know it’s colder than Mars? Isn’t that neat?

Back to the planner. I bought the Blue Sky Planner with the “daily planning sheets.”

The heart rate picks up just talking about this stuff.

Is this normal?

Daily sheets: I do best when I can plan the night before and write down what I’m going to do by the hour. Some events are scheduled, like the class I’m teaching and the gazillion drop offs and pick ups my children require. But there are A LOT of hours in the day that can be frittered away or USED FOR GREATNESS.

I thrive on *accountability. Hourly planners do that for me.

*Learn about yourself. Take the 4 Tendancies Quiz HERE.

I have a shared electronic Google calendar, but largely to only consult outside of the house (and to spy on my husband who does not like feeling tethered).

I’ve tried a dozen planner ideas, from simple notebooks to only electronic.

But year after year I come back to the physical handwritten planner. I make long lists, write using colored pens, draw happy faces, and cross tasks off daily, like “strength work out!,” and “keep your butt in the chair and write for one hour.” It makes me feel incredibly accomplished. It’s positive reinforcement, the key to getting things done.

This summer I bought an official bullet journal but was so paralyzed by doing it right that it still sits in my drawer. Oh dear (Nina, I hide my face in shame!)

Let’s move on to 2018 goals.

Every January we sit together as a family as I chirp about progress (I’m SO FUN 🙂 )

This year my goals have become more about maintenance (a sign of age?)

2018, in no particular order:

  • I will stop cutting my own hair. PUT DOWN THE SCISSORS, AMY!
  • I will stop drinking Diet Coke. JUST KIDDING! Have you tried Lime? Limit to 3/week.
  • Start every day by quietly reading the scriptures. Not social media or email.
  • Charmin toilet paper. After too many years of cheap, I’ve concluded that cheap actually requires much more usage. Quality, friends, QUALITY! Our backsides deserve better.
  • Finish novel. Pitch novel. Sell novel. WE CAN DO IT.
  • Read 50 books with the Goodreads Challenge.
  • Run at least two half-marathons. Maintenance. I just don’t want to get slower. Not yet.
  • House. Tidy daily. Stop dumping laundry on floor and leaving it there. Seriously. Come on.
  • One treat a day. NO MORE.
  • Strengthen the Family. Daily family scriptures, prayer, and kind voices. It works. I see it.
  • Austerity. No, Amy, you do not need that hair product.

“Reach” Goals I dream of…

  • Watercolor more with Brynne
  • Photography
  • Declutter entire house. Live total minimalism. Maybe live in a treehouse.

Comment please. What kind of calendar do you use? What are your goals? Do you make them?





  • Nina says:

    NO shame! Everyone has to find a system that works. And we are all different so the systems will be different.

    I’m more stuck on the fact that you would cut your own hair!!

  • Oh I wish I was as organized as you! I make a word document for every month and create a calendar (using the create tables option). I keep everything on those days, including goals. Very boring, but it’s worked for me over the years. I’d love to start a physical planner, but I switch stuff up so often that I feel like it would end up looking super messy with cross-outs and such 🙂 I get a haircut about once a year at GreatClips. It’s just a straight across trim and I always feel like I should be able to do it myself.

  • Erikka says:

    I love personal accountability and daily planning has changed my life. As has my bullet journal – we should chat about them. I am a renegade in all matters, so never follow the rules – my way might inspire you! 😉

  • Julia Tomiak says:

    I LOVE how much you and I are the same! 🙂 I too cannot do without a physical planner. I recently found and fell in love with the Action Planner. It has a place in the front for my values and goals, and then each week is laid out with spaces for 1) the TO DO list 2) the days of the week, broken into hours for appointments, accountability notes, etc, 3) projects to delegate (I tend to use this for creative idea prompts) 4) goals – reminders about steps for the bigger goals. I LOVE it, and I think you would too. I will tweet/ email a pic.

    My goals for the year (maybe I should do a blog post on this)

    Eat more plants
    Cut back on Coke (1-2 per week)
    Run a race longer than a 5k
    Do 5 pull ups independently (my daughter is training for a Spartan; surely I can manage 5 pull ups)
    Finish two manuscripts and query at least one of them
    Do more creative/art things that feed my spirit
    Read more – I can’t aspire to 50 books tho. Maybe 20?

  • Dana says:

    Amy, I adore this post! I laughed a few times – you cut your own hair? With my curls, I’m pretty sure I’d end up looking like a poodle. I share your glee in getting a new planner (I love mine!) and have a similar book goals (reading, not writing…a novel? I can’t wait to read it!)

    May your 2018 be a fabulous one!

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