I thought that this summer would be fun and laid back, but holy moly have we been busy.
Being a wife and mom is enough to keep anyone running from morning til night, but throw in running 3 businesses, freelance writing, volunteering, and more hobbies than any one person should have and you have my crazy life.
I have been working on saying NO when asked to take more on. AND I have been working hard at becoming more organized, and better managing my time. The most important tool in my time-management toolshed is my planner!
We all have a planner, right? But is yours fun? Something I discovered a long time ago is that I am far more likely to keep using tools if they are fun and have style. I use funky containers to organize, pens I like to write with, and accessorize my planner!
If you know me in real life, you have likely been introduced to my planner. She is my best friend. When I became self-employed, I needed a way to track my salon appointments. I stumbled through a couple of appointment books, and after a client called me from the salon parking lot wondering where I was (at home on my couch watching Netflix, if you must know) I knew they weren’t working for me. I needed something that would combine my work schedule with my personal, so I wasn’t constantly double-booking myself and having to move appointments.
I already had an Erin Condren planner, so I decided to give it a try. I struggled for months to find a “system” within the planner that worked for me, and I think I finally have it!
If you are familiar with Erin Condren planners, you probably know there is a cult following of people who decorate their planners like an elaborate scrapbook. You know I can’t resist an art supply, so I definitely tried all the stickers, and washi tape, and pens, and markers … have I mentioned I have an addictive personality?
After a while, it was clear that I needed a simpler approach to my planner. Decorating it for the week was not only a relaxing habit, but it also gave me time to really look over and commit my schedule to memory. But too many cluttery decorations were distracting me from the practicality of my planner.
I started researching simpler ways to set up my planner, and stumbled across planner stamps. Back in the day, I liked making cards and amassed quite a collection of rubber stamps. But the current generation of stamps are not only especially branded for planners, they are also tiny and practical.
I have been primarily using stamps to decorate my planner for a couple of months now – love them! We won’t talk about the collection I am amassing.
I feel like the stamps give me the control to add more functionality to my planner, but still retain the fun of decorating it. I use stamps to track daily things like reading my Bible, watering my flowers, how much water I drink, and more. I also use them to remind myself to put the trash out on the curb, pay bills, etc.
I have also used stamps to customize the boxes of my planner to suit my life. I use the top box for my blog, and social media. The middle box I use for my schedule. This includes salon appointments, and anything that is happening in my life at a specific time. The bottom box is basically mo to-do/reminder space. I use the lines at the bottom to jot down my meal plan. I recently got some weather stamps, so I add the appropriate forecast icon at the top so I can see at a glance what the weather will do that day!
I still use a little washi, and a few stickers here and there, and have even made my own stickers with Avery repositionable labels, Copic markers, and stamps. I especially love these to distinguish days off, or when bills are because if something changes, I can just move them!
I will get more specific about what my favorite products are and why in another post, but I am including some of them at the end of this one.
Have you ever heard of planner stamping? If you are like me and have never met an art supply you didn’t like, this might be a fun addition to your weekly schedule!