I use Google Calendar for a broad monthly view of appointments and activities and ToDoist for lists and to check off particular tasks that need to get done (especially if I need reminders). Having these apps on my phone means that this information is with me all the time, but neither offers a sufficiently time-based solution for managing the actual hours in my day. Enter my planner. Here's why having it all on paper is awesome...
- I can see it all the time. I prop my paper planner up on a cookbook stand on my desk. (I use the Emily Ley Academic Daily Simplified Planner, pictured above.) This way I can see it at a glance without turning on my phone, which all too often leads to distraction and time-wasting.
- It forces me to be mindful of my time. My particular planner has a month overview and then a daily schedule, marked out by the hour, for each day. I take a little bit of time each Sunday to plot out my week and a few minutes each evening to plan out the coming day. By getting my to-dos connected to actual times of the day, the likelihood that they will actually get done skyrockets.
- It's more deliberate. There's just something about writing things down that feels closer to life; it's real- does that make sense? And, for me, the act of putting something on paper in the real world, so to speak, helps me internalize the things I have to do. This in turn primes me to actually do them.
- It's prettier. Buying a planner that cost money, that I looked forward to using, and that makes me happy every time I look at it goes a long way in motivating me to manage my time well.