Cute Stickers and Color Schemes
I admit it. I’m a bit of a planner snob when it comes to adding all of those cute stickers and choosing a color scheme when decorating your planner. But it turns out that decorating your planner can make it more effective. Who knew?
Lately, I have become caught up in YouTube videos, especially those concerning planners. Anything to do with planners, and I am there. I am fascinated by these women who pull out numerous sticker books and rolls of washi tape and start decorating their month without ever writing a single thing down.
How in the world do they know if they have an appointment or a bill due that day? It’s already covered with stickers. Are they going to add yet another one on top to note what’s happening that day? Will they even be able to see it?
Are they actually using these as planners, or just as sticker books? And don’t get me started on all of the cute things they add – charms, clips, bookmarks, and more. I admit I love the way they look – some of these are practically works of art – but I can’t see myself actually being able to use one.
I am all about function. It’s nice to have something that looks pretty, and I’m not above adding a sticker or two, but a planner has to work for me first. That’s my bottom line and the reason I use a planner in the first place. I think all of that other stuff, as cute as it might be, would get in my way.
Planners are About Function
The purpose of a planner is to help keep you organized, see what’s going on in your life, and help you remember everything. If you choose to decorate your planner in your spare time (as a hobby of sorts), that’s fine.
It is not mandatory.
Now I do see the value of adding some stickers or colors to your planner. For instance, I note when my bills are due in green ink. Anything to do with money gets noted in green. And I color code the rest of the things in my planner as well:
- Pink for personal
- Red for family
- Orange for meals
- Purple for my volunteer work
- Turquoise for my blog
And lately, I have started a new bill tracking system so I am using the stickers it came with to note various things. I had used a digital system in the past but found it just wasn’t working for me.
Still, even with the addition of these few things, my planner is still functional. (OK. I have to confess: my planner is pink and has a llama on the front because I love llamas. So when I found a cute shaker tag – a sealed tag with sequins and glitter inside and a llama on the outside – I had to buy it and attach it to my planner. But I made sure first that it didn’t affect the function in any way. If the pages didn’t turn, or it got in the way of being able to write, it was gone. Happily, it works just fine.)
Can Cute be Functional?
As I said earlier, some of the planners I have seen are so over the top I can’t imagine them actually being useful. But maybe I’m being a bit naive here. After all, a lot of these ladies are representatives of planner companies and planner supply companies. It’s their job to use all the things and make it look fun and desirable in the process. No one said anything about practicality.
But here’s a fact that surprised me when I read it last week: decorating your planner can actually make it more effective.
Now you don’t have to go over the top with it – unless you want to – but if it makes you happy to put some stickers, washi tape, or use colorful markers or pens in your planner, feel free to do so.
As I said earlier, I actually use colored pens and markers in mine, and a few stickers as well. I color code my planner and use stickers for to-do lists, menus, and bills. I do enjoy using color, and color-coding makes it easier to see the big picture.
So here’s the reason why decorating your planner can be a good thing: if it gives you joy, it makes it more likely that you will use it. You will spend more time with it, look at it more, and be more likely to take it with you when you leave the house.
And with all of that time spent with your planner, you’re more likely to have a better idea of what’s going on with your life and less likely to forget something important.
By the way, in all of those YouTube videos, there are some real gems worth watching. Annie Smith did a video on “How to Actually Use a Planner Longer Than a Week: Be a Productivity Ninja” and I think she shares some great advice. It’s well worth a look, and less than 20 minutes long.
A Note About Types of Planners
I just wanted to add a quick note that in her video, Annie uses what is known as a traveler’s notebook or TN. This was a new concept for me until recently, and now I am loving this idea. I think this might be a great solution for a lot of you who find that a regular planner doesn’t really suit your needs.
Look for an in-depth post soon.