Keep it all together – Extra | Motivation

People would think that with a journal, a productivity planner and a planner with daily, monthly and even weekly sheets I would the most organized, planned and prepared person on this planet. WRONG!

Of course, I’m organized and I do love my life when it’s planned up to a point. And I do have issues when something planned doesn’t actually goes as planned but that’s for another time. To make sure that I don’t plan two things at the same time or forget an important meeting, I also use other planning tools: a monthly wall planner at home and Google Calendar.

Monthly wall planner at home
I believe I first used a month wall calendar in my bedroom when I still live at my parent’s. I could write down anything I wanted and keep track of everything at the same time. It helped me a lot with my part-time jobs, CEGEP class schedule, friends and family events. At one point, I stopped using it and it ended up in the trash. It was probably not to my decor taste any more or so dirty that I couldn’t erase the marks. At the beginning of 2017, I clean my office at home so I could only have what I need to work and be focused on the task ahead. Of course, there’s also some decor on that table to keep it alive like scented candles and pictures frames.

That’s when I bought another monthly wall calendar at Indigo. The design was simple so I could maximise the space of the wall calendar and I was convinced that it will last a long time because of it. Like my other planners, I didn’t really use it in July and realized that I didn’t really need it in front of me in my office so I changed it to put it next to our kitchen and entry way so my husband and I can consult it for family and friends events. We also write down any work-related event that is out of our regular schedule and birthdays. It’s now more easy to know what’s coming up and plans meals and even the week ahead.

Google Calendar
It’s no surprise these days that someone uses an online or virtual calendar. Most companies now work with them along with our own calendar whether you have a work cell phone or not. I use it for two reasons: If by any circumstances I forget my planner at home, I still can plan on my computer or phone and check if it’s not in conflict with anything else. The other reason is that I can share my calendar with my man, my sister, everybody!

 

So why all those planners and journals and not just an online one? It’s simple really. When I write things down, I remember them better and I’m more prepared for what’s coming. I love being prepared, being ready. It’s almost an issue sometimes because when something doesn’t happen as planned, it’s driving me crazy. With time, I’m getting better at it and I’m less nervous when it happens now. Another reason is that way, it’s easy for me to make sure that I don’t book something when there’s something already and that I can do that wherever and whenever I have or need to.

Hope you enjoy this series with me about how I plan my everyday life and talk to you soon!

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Keep it all together – Planner | Motivation

I’M SORRY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This post is long overdue and here it is!

After talking to you about my journal and my productivity planner, it’s now time to talk about my ”homemade” planner. But, first, a little journey about how I got to the point to actually compose my own planner. Last year, I bought a 2016-2017 planner from Kate Spade New York. It was white with golden polka dots and seems to fit my organizational & planning needs. After the first 6 months, so basically 2016, I realize that it wasn’t the case. Guys, I’m officially unable to function with a full week on only 2 pages. There’s no place on those pages to add anything. There’s no space! Yes, there’s a little section at the back for lists or info that you need to be written down but going back and forth between that section and the week that is concerned is not my jam! So like you might imagine, I start in January to look for the ”perfect” planner, MY perfect planner.

After looking around on the internet and in stores for what was available to us, I quickly realize that what I wanted would either cost me a fortune to order or simply didn’t exists. So I turned – obviously – to YouTube for some DIY video or something along those lines and, of course, I was surrounded by DIY bullet journals. At first, it sounds like a good idea since it’s not every day that would have to write something down in my planner. Some days are actually empty sometimes and apparently, it’s good for us to have days with nothing… So I started to make a bullet journal with a booklet and quickly realized that I’m not an artist. I know it didn’t need to be perfect like you can see in some Pinterest post or YouTube videos but at least it could be a little bit cute, no? So the empty journal now beautiful bullet journal went quickly to the trash – the idea, not the actual journal.

It’s at this point that I ended up on this video. I was amazed and a little bit discouraged by my lack of idea. I never thought about looking for a normal binder that would be the right size. After watching it, I went online to see if the articles that she was using (or similar ones) were available in Canada and yes, they were! Thank you, Amazon.ca 😛

That’s how mine ended up looking and I still do some changes from time to time. That kind of planner is great for that. A good example is that, in July, I didn’t really need my planner so I didn’t use it or update it before the end of last month. The plus is that I didn’t waste paper or space in my planner. Another bonus for me is that it doesn’t require my inner (not so good) artist. Colored gel pen, stickers and washi tapes are my new best friends that take care of that for me, haha!

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As for my daily planner pages and other ones, I did the same kind of research and start trying them when they seem to correspond to what I was looking for and I always stop using them after a week or two. I then decided to make my own… on Microsoft Word. It’s maybe not the best tool for it, but it did the job!

Next motivation blog will be the last part of the ”Keep it all together” series about all the extra tools that I use on top of this journal and planners.

Have a good one!

 

Keep it all together – Productivity Planner | Motivation

It’s me again! Hihi.

I know I said that this week would be about my planner in my last post. But, to be honest with you, I didn’t put it up to date for… let’s say 2 weeks now. I do know that I will need my planner next week so it’s will be more interesting for all of us if I show it to you next week. But, before I go in-depth about my productivity planner, I wanted to announce that I’m planning now on posting every Wednesdays and Saturdays, starting this week! (YEAH!)

So why a productivity planner? I already have a journal, tons of to-do lists around the house and a planner. I use this planner since a few months now (it was a journey to get to that one!) but I realize quickly that it wasn’t enough – at least for me – to make me what I have to do daily. It was around that same period that I realize that I was starting my first year of school without actual classes. I know I have the discipline and organization to make it to the end and produce a great memoir for my master’s degree but I’m still uncertain about the long-term aspect of it. Will my discipline and organization and motivation will last throughout the year? That’s when I saw the Productivity Planner at an Indigo store in downtown Montreal.

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This planner is based on the Pomodoro method. Basically, that method suggests that you focus on your task for 25 minutes followed by a 5-minute break and then go back to the task for another 25 minutes, then another break and so on until the task is completed. It remembered me what my dad used to tell me when I was in high school and that I was bored by the projects and homework: ”work for 45 minutes and take a 15-minute break” cycle. Since I’m still testing this planner, I’m not quite sure if a cycle based on 25 minutes is good for me so I’m actually trying a cycle of 30 minutes work/10 minutes break – just enough for one YouTube video 😉

One thing that I really enjoy – yes, enjoy – about this little black book is the actual layout of the pages: it’s simple yet complete. In fact, it goes straight to the point and I truly believe it is helping to keep the focus on the tasks for the day and achieve productivity.

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So far, the Productivity Planner really helped me especially on the ”keeping the focus” part since it allows me to do one task at a time without having the fear of forgetting one or – and I’m sure I’m not alone in that one – losing focus and starting thinking about everything I have to do during the week or next few days. I decided to keep going with it, especially when the research part of my memoir will be in full force!

Hope you enjoy my vision on this planner and that it will also help you to figure out if it’s  the one for the planner in you!

 

Keep it all together – The five-minute journal | Motivation

These days, these years or even these decades (!), nobody is ”only” a business man or a mother or a student. It was probably easier when everybody had one job or one etiquette. Like you, I’m not just a student or just a wife. I’m also a (freshly new) blogger, a part-time worker, a foodie, a coffee addict… So, how can we all keep it all together you ask? Three words : planning, planning, planning!

These are my planners and guides :

Keeping it all together - My planners

It might looks like a lot for only one person and one life but when you’re a young adult in 2017, you can not really make it with only one book because it’s going to be a HUGE one! There’s even another booklet inside one of them, so make it a total of 5 planners, kinda. Let’s start in order of the day so you can see why I use so many and why, maybe, these could be a useful tool for you too!

While I was writing this post, I realize it would be an extra long one if I was to talk about each one of them. And belive me when I tell you I have a lot to tell! So, for today’s post, I’ll focus on the first one I get in touch with in the day – The five-minute journal. I first heard about it a few months ago while I was watching a YouTube video from HealthNutNutrition.

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I never was quite good with journals, even when I was a teen. You do it for 3 days straight and you feel good about yourself and suddenly you skip a day, then 2, then 3 and suddenly it’s been a month that you didn’t write a line in that journal. So yeah, it’s been years that I gave up on keeping a journal up to date and went on with my life with an agenda. You can imagine that I was sceptical about this method, specially because it focusses on the good (I’m a natural pessimistic person) and that you have to write in it twice a day which meant to me twice the time was then needed for it than a ”normal” journal.

Guys, this journal is great! At first,  it wasn’t easy to write something on every line. It took me a few days before I could actually fully write a page. I also skip a few days here and there since I started it (May 2017). Sometimes, schedule can be a mess! Basically,  that journal brought me two things that I didn’t I was ”missing” : positivism and opportunism. It might be two similar things but there’s quite different in their impact on my everyday life. In fact, since I started, I find it easier to focus on the good things that happen during the day rather than the bad. I’m better with myself and also with my family and friends since then. It brought me what I was hoping a journal would bring me for so long while being easy and simple to write in. Hope everyone has a technic to brightly start their day! Actually, what is yours people?

See you next week when we’ll dive in my personal (and DIY) planner 🙂