One of my stationery resolutions for this year was to plan better. Last year, my system went out of the window as soon as we started working from home and it never recovered. I felt stressed, unorganised and unprepared but for some reason, I just couldn’t get back into the rhythm of planning.
This year, I started a new system for me, with our Undated Tomoe River Planner. A quick overview of what I’ve been doing – I split up the left hand page into two – the left hand section I use for “home planning” – chores, bills, meals planning. The second portion of the left hand page I use for date specific work tasks – anything that might be due or needs to be followed up on a particular day.
The right hand page, I use for in depth task planning (or just a to do list). Depending on the week, I may split this into specific days which I prefer, but sometimes its just a list of things that need to be done throughout the week.
For the first month of this year, it worked really well and I was able to keep this planning system consistently. However, in the first two weeks of February, we went into lockdown and working from home again and as before, the system was abandoned. The first week it was completely abandoned but the second week, I picked it up again and started to use it. I think this was partly due to the fact that in the first week of lock down, all of my tasks were specific to responding to issues (as a result of the lockdown) so what I was doing every day was difficult to plan.
When I do use the system, it works well. I like the size of the planner as it means I’m much more likely to take it with me and its still got enough room for me to detail what I need to do. The smaller space also means that I’m not listing too many things that are unrealistic to achieve in a day – I’m really only focusing on what’s important.
I noticed it was easier to get back into the rhythm of it, after abandoning it for a week. I guess its partly because it was a shorter space of time and partly because I had started to develop a habit of starting my day by looking at my planner.