Top Tips for When You Have No Idea How to Use Your Planner

Top Tips When You Have No Idea How to Use Your Planner


Are you struggling to understand how to use your planner in an effective way?

There is a TON of hype now when it comes to planners, but it can be easily overwhelming!

Look at all the planner options, all the planner Instagrams out there, and all the possibilities for what you can do!

All the hype can make it hard to use your planner in a way that really works for you. So many times I’ve seen people use a planner a certain way just because someone else is doing it. BUT DON’T DO THAT! Your planner is YOUR planner, and it should be helping no one but you.

Related: How to Make a Planner Routine

So, I looked to my planner Instagram and asked my followers to share their #1 tip for how to use your planner. I wanted to make sure that I brought other pieces of advice into this mix, because everyone is at different points in their planner journeys!

I encourage you to follow the links to everyone’s Instagrams and follow them. They are all AMAZING! I absolutely love the planner community on Instagram. If you’re looking for any sort of planner inspiration, you’ll DEFINITELY find some! (And a #shamelessselfpromo to follow me, too!)

Without further ado, let’s get into it!

1. Write Down All the Tasks You Could Possibly Think Of

“Before you start to plan, take a day to write down ALL of the tasks you encounter. Then, divide that list into four categories:

  • appointments
  • tasks
  • contacts
  • notes (that are actually useful!)

This will help you determine what needs to go in your planner, what needs to go in your phone, and what needs to be filed away.”

– Elle, @ellegantplanning

2. Stop the Comparison

“Don’t compare yourself to others! It can make you feel overwhelmed or even discouraged. Especially if you don’t consider that some of us planner girls have been searching for planner peace through trial and error for years! Instead, look to others for inspiration and slowly work on creating a system and style that works for you!”

– Jackie, @organizedpotato

3. Only Buy the Things You Want

“ONLY buy what you love. Having things that I will never use because of it being a trend led me to be overwhelmed by the “glory” of planning at first. “Keep it simple, stupid,” as they always say – at least at first. Then, yes, you will eventually have multiple planners for multiple things.”

– Desiree, @dgexchange

Top Tips When You Have No Idea How to Use Your Planner

4. Don’t Wish Your Planner Was Someone Else’s

“Starting out, when you’re following all of these experienced planners, don’t get into wishing that their planner/life was yours. Get inspiration for your spreads, but don’t give yourself the headache or stress because you don’t ‘have it all’ like others do.”

– Rianna, @planningmillennial

5. Make Sure You’ll Get a Good Use Out of What You Purchase

“Don’t feel obligated to buy things that the majority of people are using or buying, and never feel pressured to follow trends. Whether it be a new type of planner, super cute stickers, expensive pens or exclusive washi, just because it’s popular or super coveted doesn’t mean you actually want or will use it! If you feel like it’ll work for you, go ahead and purchase, but make sure it’s what you want first. Read reviews, ask friends, and look around for other options that may be better. After being into planning for 4 years, my biggest thing is to always make sure I’ll get good use out of things before committing to a purchase.”

– Riley, @sincerely.riley

6. Remember Function Over Decoration

“If you’re somone who makes your planner decorative and artsy, don’t beat yourself up if you just don’t have the time or ability to make it as aesthetically pleasing as you want. Function is more important than aesthetics!”

– Kaitlyn, @studyplankait

Top Tips When You Have No Idea How to Use Your Planner

Are you noticing a trend or two in what people are saying here?

I sure am!

Planning is all about how it helps you. It’s so easy to get caught up in the “I want to make my planner the prettiest and have all the things and be the ultimate planner queen.” But that really doesn’t matter if it’s not helping you organize your life.

It really boils down to using your planner in the way that is best for you. If that means using stickers, go for it! It if means writing in multiple colored pens, or using a different layout, or coming up with something entirely unique, it needs to be for you! 

Be sure to read my post on the 7 Planner Mistakes You Need to Avoid to get more advice!

Make sure you know how to use your planner in YOUR way!

I hope this post helped you understand how to use your planner effectively. Remember that it doesn’t matter how anyone else plans, it only matters that your planner is helping you live your best life.

Comment down below what YOUR #1 planner tip is! Let’s all share. 🙂

And by the way – have you joined the Mental Health Empowerment Facebook Group yet? Join it here!

Sierra Mafield Blog


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