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What kind of planner do you use?Views: 582
Jul 20, 2005 5:18 pmWhat kind of planner do you use?#

Mariangie Gonzalez
I don't know about you, but I've tried all planners, Franklin-Covey, DayRunner, PDA, and nothing seems to make sense to me.

What planner do you use?


Private Reply to Mariangie Gonzalez

Jul 20, 2005 7:11 pmre: What kind of planner do you use?#

Amy Jo Garner

(love your name btw)

Just like you I have tried all kinds of systems. I even sat through a Franklin Covey class.

What I've found is that I work best with a running to-do list. I prioritize the items as A, B or C (A being a high-priority item). I cross items off as they are completed or I decide it is something I no longer need to do. Up until recently I kept the list in a tiny spiral notebook that could easily slip into a purse. The drawback was having to carry a separate address/phone book.

However, last month I was shopping at Target and found a mini-planner from Franklin Covey. It has a calendar, notes section, tasks section, and an address book. I've been using the tasks section to keep my to-do list and the notes section to sketch out mini-mind maps when an idea pops into my head.

On my desk in my office I keep a daybook that shows my daily schedules... any classes I am teaching, appointments, phone time, conference calls, etc. My mom sends me one each year that she orders from Birds & Blooms :-)

You could do all that with a larger planner, but to me it was awkward to keep up with. Plus the planners usually have all kinds of sections and pages that I didn't use, so it was really a waste.


Private Reply to Amy Jo Garner

Jul 20, 2005 7:31 pmre: What kind of planner do you use?#

Russ Jackman
I gave up on regular planners and designed my own about 15 years ago ... it's designed as a two-page-per-week layout in 8-1/2 x 11, with lots of room for tasks, a hot list, and separate daily columns for meetings and tasks.

When I was on the road, or in the office before computers became so pervasive, it helped keep me on track. The only issue was the constant bringing forward each week of incomplete tasks!

I recently purchased a little computer utility called "On The Ball", which allows you to drop tasks, meetings, etc. "on the ball" and get them out of your mind until it's time to work on them. It's pretty light-weight as far as planners go, but it's like an electronic "to do" list that brings stuff forward, inserts repeating tasks automatically, and is quite easy to use. They are developing a version 2, and I hope it will have the ability to prioritize or assign importance to each task, and list accordingly.

For large projects, I simply use a pad and paper and list every conceivable little step along the way. I'm finding that working in 20 minute chunks is ideal, so I include different tasks (even if something mundane as putting in the laundry) for a change of pace ... all pre-scheduled and guilt-free.

However, I would love to have one single source controlling my life, and not being married (!) I figure a PDA will be my next major purchase. The problem is finding suitable software that will run on the PDA platform ...


Private Reply to Russ Jackman

Jul 20, 2005 7:38 pmre: re: What kind of planner do you use?#

Mariangie Gonzalez
Thanks for the compliment on my name, actually this is a shortcut for my real name...., ready?..... Maria de los Angeles... YES, that's just my FIRST name, so you know, if I wanted to be somebody online I had to do like the Hollywood stars, change my name. ;o)

Yes, I also find the most effective to be a to do list, but I never though of incorporating the priority abc's of Franklin-Covey, I'll have to do that.

Now, talking again about mind mapping is there a seminar, course or something that can help me learn this? Stephanie, are you working on this yet?

I downloaded the mind-mapping software but I can't use it... something about "java not found" in my computer.
Anyway I would feel better if it's something I can carry with me at all times.

Thanks for your help Amy,


Private Reply to Mariangie Gonzalez

Jul 20, 2005 8:03 pmre: re: re: What kind of planner do you use?#

Jennifer Lavender
I have tried several, never kept up with them, but am thinking about trying the FlyLady control journal for me and getting a large calendar (either hers or similar) to hang up at home and keep track of stuff that my husband needs to know about as well. You can see the control journal here: http://flylady.net/pages/FlyShop_CJ.asp and instructions on how to create your own can be found here: http://flylady.net/pages/cjmain.asp. I think the most important thing is not to have an "official" planner, but to figure out what will work best with the way you think and the places you spend your time (I've heard more and more about people hanging their calendars in their bathroom because they know everyone will be in there every day). If there isn't a planner available that will do what you need it to do, either adapt one to fit or make up your own.

Private Reply to Jennifer Lavender

Jul 20, 2005 9:41 pmre: What kind of planner do you use?#

Geneen Seal
Like Russ, I created my own organization system. After many years of trying to find the perfect one to suit my needs, I decided it would be easier to create my own. I keep my master scheduler (spreadsheet) on my computer and download the updates to my PDA.

By the way, my investment in a PDA has been a life saver for me. I've never been good with paper--always making tons of notes on little sticky notes and always misplacing them or just creating massive disorganized paper piles. My PDA has helped me keep my office space more organized.

I also print out my schedule and keep it posted on a bulletin board in my office/family room. It gives me an added visual and also allows my husband to remind me to stay on task when he realizes I'm losing focus.

Private Reply to Geneen Seal

Jul 21, 2005 12:41 amre: re: What kind of planner do you use?#

Angelo Cerase
My daily planner is my phone/PDA combo. As well, it automatically syncs itself with MS Outlook. No worries about an appointment being on one and not the other (which was the problem I had using paper-based planners). Also, with my digital PDA also being my cell phone, I always have it with me.

I use a Sony Ericsson P800 with uses the Symbian OS, but many others use either the more popular Palm OS or Windows Mobile OS. Either one should sync with most computer calendar programs.


Private Reply to Angelo Cerase

Jul 21, 2005 11:47 amPMS: What kind of planner do you use?#

Sue T.
I've used my computer complete with reminders; running task lists; a schedule that I can print and put up in front of me; a regular daily planner with a to do list space on the bottom and a check off area on the right hand side.

I always leave room to do something that I may forget, on another page. I transfer it all the time. I find that when I have a deadline to meet I'm ALOT more focused and I get what I need to done. Otherwise I'm bored. So what I do is, as I've said before is to "create" the situation that I know motivates me ... like people, or a deadline etc.,

Since I know that I lose focus, I re-arrange my life so that it's VERY simple to do things. Much like what I posted with my bills. It's tedious and boring but if you do one at a time, eventually it's very easy, takes ALOT less time and POOF you're finished and don't have to worry about it until the reminder comes in again. It works great because I only have to click, click, mark page and file.

I have another thing that I feel should be addressed for the ladies. It's PMS. :)

I have a great article on it, I want to post it here I think it would be good to combine that with a loss of focus discussion. Why?

Because every month, for about 3-5 days I just do not think right Period. If I look and follow my cycle, it's alot easier to say "Oh, Ok this will be over with by xyz day" and it always is....

What do you think? Want to see it? :) I may just put it here anyway. it's totally true. :)

Sue T.

Private Reply to Sue T.

Jul 22, 2005 11:02 pmre: PMS: What kind of planner do you use?#

Rebecca Noles
I've tried them all and nothing works for me like Outlook (I am a techie at heart). It does everything I want it to and more. If my computer ever crashes, I am up the creek without a paddle ;) (I do back up thank goodness!)

Needless to say I do have a nice Daytimer sitting on my desk, leather bound, 5 1/2 x 8, but I haven't opened it in months, but I do continue to buy those expensive refills every year.

Becki Noles

Private Reply to Rebecca Noles

Jul 24, 2005 11:16 pmre: re: PMS: What kind of planner do you use?#

Stephanie Frank
Hey everybody:

I found that there's one major thing missing from all planner/PDA systems in the task list and that is a TIME estimator.

As ADDers, we tend to put way too many tasks on a list, expecting them to get done because "they don't take that long".

I've found that whatever system I use, (like many of you, I've got a modified paper planner and a PDA because I have employees that keep my schedule), it's the task list that gets me bogged down the most.

So here's a simple solution and a great skill to start working on:

1. Next to each task you have to do for the day, put an estimated amount of time.

2. Add up the time allotment for the day.

3. Ask yourself "is there enough time in my day to accomplish this task?

You'll realize very quickly that the "normal" person can't do all the things you have written down, and neither can you. The anxiety can go away when you become more realistic about time.


Stephanie Frank
Author, The Accidental Millionaire

Private Reply to Stephanie Frank

Jul 25, 2005 6:55 pmre: What kind of planner do you use?#

Deana Clark
I use my own system. I use a 3 ring binder with dividers. It is just easier for me.

Private Reply to Deana Clark

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