One of the most difficult decisions when getting a new Planner is finding out which is the best layout for me.
While some are more minimalistic than others, all planners keep many similar features. However, there are also main differences that you should recognize to make a good decision when purchasing your new planner:
A planner might have:
- Only Monthly layout with some blank/lined pages in between monthly spreads to add your own to-dos and appointments.
- Monthly + weekly spreads in between. This is the most common planner organization, however, be prepared to find many differences here as well: These weekly spreads can be formatted as large horizontal areas, small ones, boxes, or even vertical.
- Monthly + Daily spreads instead of weekly ones. The disadvantage of this daily planner is that due to the number of days/pages in a year (365), it's difficult to keep them in one planner. If this is the case, the paper is very thin and sometimes very uncomfortable to use due to ink bleeding. Many brands make them as 6-month planners.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- How do I visualize my day in my head? Per hours? Per blocks? In a long list of things to do?
- How do I picture my week in my head? Do I like to see the whole week at once, so I know what and when I have my appointments or meetings, and to know what is the most important things I need to do?
- Do I have a lot of appointments everyday? What about during my week?
- Do I actually like to have the whole week in mind, or a daily hourly format (schedule) will be easier for me?
How do I prefer to organize my tasks and appointments?
Some planners have hourly schedules, while others have sections for to-do lists, notes, and even space for journaling and drawing, for goals and meals, or specific format to grow as a better person.
TIPS & HINTS:
Here there are some tips and suggestions that might help you choose the best planner layout for you:
If you like to have all your appts. activities, planning & goals in one place, and be able to take a look at your week and know exactly what, when and how things are going to happen...then, a Full Week Control layout planner will be great for you (see pic below).
If you like a clean, minimalist design, and love having plenty of space for planning, organization and, why not, some creative decoration each day... a Simple Horizontal layout planner is for you (see pic below).
If you like to organize your week by appointments, set up time blocks, prioritize tasks and add specific to-do list per day... a Vertical layout planner will be your best choice (see pic below).
If you don't need a lot of space for appts, but would love to use a second page full of space for charts, quotes, to-do lists, reminders, menus, events, habit tracking, or even a drawing...a Functional layout planner will be a good choice for you (see pic below).
If you want to start journaling, but finding the time and getting another notebook in addition to your planner isn't appealing, this is a great solution for you... you should choose the Easy Journaling layout planner (see pic below).
If instead of planning your week, you prefer to plan each day in detail, recording all events, appointments, time blocks, meals and everything that happens in your day, by the hour....a Daily layout planner would be great for you (see pic below).
If you're just getting into the habit of planning and you're still feeling a little inconsistent, you probably don't want to waste dated weeks of your new planner by forgetting... then, an Undated Planner will be perfect for you (see pic below).
If you can't decide yet, be kind to yourself, think about which layout might work best for you and your new planning habit, and choose one. If you didn't choose the right one, don't worry too much, in the coming months you will learn a lot about yourself, what you like, what works best for you and what your best planning style is; Next year you will know for sure which layout to choose. But for now, just go for it and enjoy the process!