So let’s start at the very beginning, because like Maria Von Trapp sung, it’s a very good place to start!
To create an organised life, it’s not just about organising your house. You need to start by organising yourself. You need to create a routine and manage your time so you have the time and energy to clean and organise!
The best way to start is with a planner.
My name is Larissa, and I am a Planner Addict. Not sure how it all began but becoming a teacher sure did nothing to quash my addiction to making lists, plans and timetables. I live for lists. I make them in my sleep I am sure. I have plans for the day, for the week, for the month, for the year and for the next ten years!
Over the years I have “played” with many planners. Some were opened and used with such enthusiasm I thought they were best thing since sliced bread. A month later they sat lifeless and I had returned to making lists and recording important dates on random scrawled sticky notes. Some like my Erin Condren Life Planner went the distance. I have used it for the last three years and it has literally only been in the last few months that we have parted ways.
But since our third baby entered our family, life has been way too busy for the open format of the Life Planner. Its beauty in its coloured fonts and gorgeous covers was great to look at but was not helping me manage my time or my life effectively as it could. It was time to try something new.
So being a list maker I made a list of what I needed in a planner.
5 THINGS I NEED IN A PLANNER
- FLEXIBILITY. There are two kinds of planners. The ready made and the DIY. They each have their benefits. I have always been a ready made kind of girl as I like to be able to buy a planner and start using it straight away. Ready Made planners are cheap, . The problem being that it is hard to “add” to a ready made planner. You need to adjust your needs to suit the format of the planner pages and not the other way around. The Erin COndren planner has days divided into Morning, Day, Evening. But I need to do lists, blog notes, tot school ideas, I need my planner to keep track of multiple areas of my life. Although the Life PLanner was great for keeping track of general appointments it was more a diary than a planner. I want to be able to add personlaised content and sections to keep track of all areas of my life, in one space.
- SPACE. I need a daily page. I need space to WRITE! One column is not enough for me. I want space for a specific time schedule and space for appointments and even a space to jot down notes throughout the day.
- MORE THAN A DIARY. I want my planner to hold my cleaning schedule, blog ideas, meal plans, tot school plans, goals, to do lists, shopping tracker….EVERYTHING! I need to be able to add things and remove things as I please!
- PRETTY. Of course practical is just not enough, I want it to be pretty too! I can do without the coloured pages (I cna decorate those myself) but I want the cover at least to be appealing.
- SMALL. I need my planner to be usable but compact. I want it to be light enough to take in my handbag. My EC was one of the smaller planners I have had but it was still too bulky. A5 is my perfect size.
After a bit of research I found the perfect system.
THE DISCBOUND SYSTEM
The Discbound System revolves around planners and pages that are bound together by discs. The beauty of these discs is, unlike ready made planners that are bound, with a discbound you can remove and add pages as you like.
Using the discbound punch, you simply punch holes in any paper, card, laminate and add it to your planner! Tuckshop lists, rosters, excursion notes, dividers, plastic pockets, lists, anything can be added to your planner simply by using the discbound punch. Once an item is in you can also remove it and relocate it to another space in your planner! This is tricky to describe so this YouTube clip, demonstrates for you. Be kind it’s my first attempt at YouTube!
Now this is just a SYSTEM. It is not a specific planner.
That comes next. To start creating your own discbound planner you will need;
- the punch and
- a discbound notebook (I bought a Martha Stewart Discbound notebook a year or so ago, but highly recommend the Arc notebooks).
As mentioned in the YouTube clip both the Arc Punch and Notebooks can be found at Staples Online and delivery is quick and generally free. You could even just buy the punch and create your own planner using a laminated piece of cardstock as the cover. The punch is also available through Amazon as a “travel” punch that is a much cheaper and lighter version of the punch I bought, you just have to find a kind friend overseas to purchase it for you (get your act together AMAZON! Australia needs shipping too!)
You now have the foundations of a completely customisable system. This system can be used year after year. As one year ends you don’t need to buy a whole new planner, just update your inserts!
I only wish I had of found this system a long time ago, especially whilst I was working. I could have easily added all those newsletters, staff meeting notes, rosters into my own planner without stapling plastic pockets into my store bought planner.
So that’s the beginning. But I am afraid it is a long way from finding “Planner Peace” for now you need some planner pages!
The options for Planner pages are endless but tomorrow I will share with you my choice and in my opinion, THE MOST AMAZING planner pages I have ever come across.
For a sneak peek I have already uploaded a look inside my planner onto my brand spanking new YouTube Channel –
You can check it out and SUBSCRIBE HERE