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5 Ways to use your daily planner without burning out

Updated: Jun 7, 2023

How to use your planner in a way that you're consistent, organized and aligned

There's seemingly 1000 different thins we're balancing day-to-day. Sometimes our days feel full to the bursting point but are heart-achingly empty in nature. A daily planner is a great way to create more organization in your life while helping you manage your time. Having a daily planner will only help you as much as you utilize it. How do we get into those pages even when the day is busy, difficult or just tough? It has everything to do with our ability to defer instant gratification and choose up. Today you're going to learn some ways to get more out of your planner without burnout.

"it's better to be consistently good, than occasionally great"

-Nick Bare

1. Find a convenient time for planning

Are your plans worth five minutes every day?

By incorporating our planner into our routines, we in turn get better at planning and our routines simultaneously. By aiming for a usual time to fill out your planner, you'll gain a better understanding of your life and where you're heading. Has anyone ever asked you "what is your plan for after ___?" or "what do you do?". Oftentimes, these questions catch us off guard because we're not rooted in our goals and vision for the future. Using your daily planner frequently increases the alignment between who you ought to be, and who you are currently. Consistency is key when working towards any goal, and your planner is no different. It's an extension of your journey today, tomorrow and each step you take along the way towards your goals. The best times for planning are during the morning or the night before your planned day. Using your planner before the day gives you a clear idea of what's ahead and prepares you to control your chaos.

2. Reverse The planning process

By routinizing your planner, you will routinize the tasks you do often. These things become "Need to do's" or unwavering commitments we meet regularly. This allows us to get more done in our free time and get closer to our mental, physical or professional goals. Start your plans with the things you KNOW you've got to do tomorrow. This time - blocking approach takes the stress out of the rest of the day. After you've planned your Need-to-do's you are left with space to fill. In this space, revert back to the goals you've set for yourself. This space is for the things you ought to be able to do today, this week or this month. Are you trying to hit your key performance markers at work? Do you want to finish a book this month? Whatever these goals are, plan the activities that align with them after your Need to do's. You will be left with time to do the things you want to do like drinking a glass of wine, watching some Hulu, or just simply chilling.

3. it's not your gas tank, fill it full!

Fill your planner up! Unless you find overwhelm in too many words on your page, filling up your planner with many tasks gives you positive reinforcement as you do them. Even something simple like eating lunch or saying something positive to someone else feels amazing to check off at the end of the day. If we're not there to congratulate our achievements, who's going to be? The act of crossing off achievements gives us affirmations that we're actually on track. A feeling so many of us can relate to. "Is what I'm doing mattering?" These feelings are all associated with chaos. By using your daily planner to organize the big and little things, you'll find more stability and time to take care of whats most important, you.

4. use it to attack fear-based limitations

We all find ways to procrastinate, or ignore things that our hearts tell us we should try. These beliefs come from our childhood, and the things we agree we are "too small" "too old" "too inexperienced" or "too disadvantaged" to do. Nobody is exempt from fear based limitations, but those who are good at breaking through them get noticed. The things that scare us deepest will silently suppress our voice that believes we're capable of our deepest desires. This is dangerous because we most fear the things that will result in the greatest amount of satisfaction, positive impact and perceived success for our lives. Use your planner to commit to things you're scared of. Your first sales call is this Thursday? Use your planner to plan some practice on Wednesday with a friend, or to prepare your pitch for delivery. By planning towards these goals, you'll be able to chip away at the fears that bind us to jobs we don't like, relationships that hurt us, and lives lived below what we deserve.

5. avoid letting your planner be your judge

Your relationship with your planner is a close one. It's a physical record of your aspirations, and if we are what we do, it's an extension of yourself. That being said, after setting high goals and setting out to achieve them you create new standards. These standards are structural and provide a point of reference for our success. However, they can also become a judge. A judge of what you're doing and what you're not doing and everything in between. When your relationship with these goals isn't aligned with what you're doing everyday it creates suffering. In the form of a clouded mental state, negative thoughts and self-blame. It is OKAY to not complete each activity you sought out to do. It happens, what truly matters is the small effort you make every day to get slightly better. Dust yourself off, don't punish yourself. It's good to have a space to write or think about the things you might've missed, or to just get some of your thoughts on the page. Next Moves N.O.W has a daily planner I like because of it's activity pages that align your goals to your daily plans. This keeps authenticity in my day and I feel more purpose from the things I do knowing they are building towards my goals. They also include a Free Expression page each week to write any of my misses, where I forgot to complete an assignment or cut my workout short because I let negative thoughts get the best of me. It's a good place to find some balance between ambition an

d humility that helps me feel confident in my place.

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