Self-Care Challege (Day 88): Planning

On day 88 of my 366-day self-care challenge, I explored new planning strategies to keep myself accountable.

I’m obsessed with planning.

It’s always been that way, really. As a child, I spent my allowance on markers and notebooks. As a college student, I purchased every planner I could get my hands on. And as an adult, it seems I’ve continued my search for the “perfect” planner – one that helps me stay focused on my goals, but isn’t cumbersome to use.

Over the years I’ve test-driven an embarrassingly large number of planners. I’ve used Franklin Covey, Crystal Wilkerson, Day Runner, Day Minder, At-A-Glance and countless other lesser-known brands. But typically, within 3 months or so, I’ll find myself switching to another planner in hopes that it will be “the one.”

My biggest frustration has been that there never seems to be enough space to establish clear goals, and being able to track my progress toward them has been virtually non-existent until now.

A couple of weeks ago, I stumbled on the SELF Journal, and a little package of love was delivered yesterday. I stayed up late like a child with a new toy filling the pages with some adventurous plans for the future.

What I like about this particular journal is that it’s undated, which means I can start a new project at any time. And unlike other journals, it targets only a 13-week time-frame (3 months), making projects feel more manageable. While most larger projects obviously take much longer than 3 months to complete, this format helps break goals down into smaller chunks.

I know that many people have converted to web-based goal tracking systems, but I prefer the creative process of planning on paper. I like being able to peek at my goals wherever I happen to be (and paper isn’t dependent on battery life). Likewise, I enjoy sketching out my ideas; paper allows me to do that.

The jury is still out as to whether this one will be “the one” for me, but at minimum it’s helping me stay focused on what needs to be done right now.

What has helped you turn your intentions into actions?

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