Planning 101: Six Steps for Setting Up Your Planner

You have your planner ready to go now, but you don’t know where to start! Don’t worry, starting is the hardest part. Once you have that done, it’s smooth sailing from there. I’ll walk you through how to best set up your planner so that you can get started on planning NOW.

Step 1

For me, I have to write everything down in my planner. If I don’t, I won’t remember to get it done! To get started, you first need to have a planner that you enjoy looking at. Remember, you’ll most likely be using this planner for the next year so be sure that it’s one that you love. I personally love our Big Plans planner (coming soon). It just makes me so happy to look at!

Step 2

Next, you’ll need supplies. This can be as simple as a pen and some stickers. Since you’ll be referring to your planner for at least the next 365 days, I recommend that you invest in some fun planner accessories and supplies. I’ve covered everything that you’ll need in my first Planning 101 post: “All The Supplies You Need To Get Started.”

Now that you have everything you need to get started, let’s talk about how to actually begin! You’ll want to start with a pencil or sticky notes so that you can rewrite in pen later. This way, it’s easy to adjust your calendar as plans change.

Step 3

First, you want to write down all important dates that are coming up. These are things you are 99% sure of, such as vacations, events, and birthdays. Most planners will include holidays, but feel free to add any other days you also celebrate. Don’t worry, you can always add to this as they come up, but it’s good to start off with plans that you know are happening in the future. I like to write these down both on the monthly page, as well as under my “Today” section in my weekly spreads.

Step 4

Next, think about tasks you do regularly. Do you have weekly chores to do or monthly bills to pay? I like using sidebar stickers to keep track of what I need to accomplish weekly. Make a list of everything you need to do on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis, and then write those into your planner. I write my tasks under the “To-Do” daily section of my weekly spreads, that way I know exactly what to accomplish each day.

Step 5

Are there any other categories you want to keep track? For example, some people like to record their fitness activities or meal plans for the week. I have a small section for my daily gratitude and daily expenditures for each day, which I record on stickers. If there is something that you want to keep track daily, such as personal goals, make sure you leave room for that too. I generally keep these items at the bottom under my “Little Things” section, but I have even seen others keep a separate planner to track these other categories.

Step 6

Finally, make it fun! Once you’re sure of your plans, you can break out the stickers and colored pens to organize and prettify your planner. I’ll cover more of this in a future blog post, but feel free to watch our YouTube channel or Instagram for more inspiration!

How do you get started with planning? Is there anything I missed?


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