If you’re the kind of person who prefers a paper, hold-it-in-your hand calendar/planner there are certainly lots of choices out there with features and layouts to fit any organizational style. Whether you use a book in addition to your phone/computer or instead of it, the first thing you have to do is wade through a sea of choices. Some planners have recently spawned cottage industries with dedicated product lines, Face Book groups, You Tube videos and web sites designed for the folks who use them. Others have remained more streamlined and true to their traditional layouts and functionality. Here’s a look at just a few of the options:
We all know the tried and true At-a-Glance calendars with streamlined pages that cover the basics. They are inexpensive, edited to include the essentials and sure to please the minimalist though they do offer a version with a more decorative feel. Another classic is the Day-Timer which offers options to customize your planner including loose leaf and spiral versions, detailed daily/weekly/monthly layout options and a variety of covers. They also offer storage boxes to archive completed planners for those who use their planner as a record of events or transactions.
There are also many options that are specifically designed to enhance productivity, goal setting and a variety of other purposes. For example, the Productivity Planner from Paper Source and the BTP planner for direct sales consultants.
Offering a “custom lifeplanner” with fashionable covers and lots of bells & whistles is the Erin Condren planner. These planners enjoy a cult following of mainly women who love them. Though they are very pretty and fashionable, don’t be fooled by the appearance. They are also well organized, offer layout options, two sizes, spiral and hardbound versions and tons of accessories and companion products to tailor them to the user’s needs. If you have a teacher or nurse in your life, you really need to know Erin Condren.
Disc-bound planners are also popular and offer ultimate flexibility for designing the contents of your planner. There are options within the disc-bound planners that offer streamlined business functionality as well as more decorative personal planner versions. There are several sources and a wide variety of page formats & sizes, covers, special purpose pages, pockets etc. Discs come in different sizes to customize the page capacity of your book. Levenger, Martha Stewart, TUL and Arc are all in this category available via their own web sites or in some cases Office Depot or Staples. There are also paper punches (like a 3-hole punch) which make any piece of paper disc compatible and thus you can insert virtually anything into your disc-bound notebook. Rearranging, adding and deleting pages is easy and one of the most desirable features of a disc-bound planner. There are also files available to download from Etsy allowing you to print your own disc-bound planner and special pages.
More information and Resources:
Beyond the Party Planner
Erin Condren LifePlanner
Levenger Circa Disc-Bound Planners and Notebooks
Martha Stewart Disc-Bound at Staples
TUL Disc-bound Planner at Office Depot
Disc-bound pages and accessories on Etsy