How I’m Planning 2021

I last did a run-through of the planners I was using in June, so I thought with the new year it was time for an update!

A few things haven’t changed. We’re still using the Sighh meal planner (when we can be bothered to plan meals). And I still whip out my Daily Balance pad when I have a busy day that requires stricter time blocking to make sure I get everything done.

I’ve well and truly fallen off the Five Minute Journal wagon, but I’m hoping to bring it back into my morning routine in 2021. I also haven’t been doing as much digital bullet journaling, but this is something I also want to get back into but in a more creative and reflective way.

So that leaves us with…

Ohh Deer X Urban Outfitters Daily Planner

A few years back, I bought one of the Ohh Deer Daily Planners which were fairly popular at the time. They had a day-per-page layout with a timetable, a to-do list and a notes section. I ended up not using it because my job at the time didn’t vary enough to warrant such a thorough breakdown of my day. I was going to recycle it but my partner hates that kind of waste (rightfully so!) so she claimed it (despite the cover being pink marble which isn’t her aesthetic at all). She liked it a lot, so for the past 2 Christmasses, I’ve bought her a new one.

This year, I noticed they changed the layout slightly so a day is now spread over 2 pages with a larger section for notes. Until now, I’d been using a notebook to create a similar (but sloppier) layout to set out my daily tasks and meetings for my 9-5. So ordering one for myself was a no-brainer.

I couldn’t wait to try it, so I actually started using it at the end of December and so far I am very impressed. There’s plenty of space for to-dos and notes. I can keep track of my meetings. And I really like the matrix that lets me clearly prioritise tasks and calls.

Kikki.K A5 Planner

In a funny turn of events, I actually own 3 copies of this planner. It seems that when Kikki.K went into administration in the UK, the order I had placed got multiplied. It wasn’t until we moved to the new flat that I’d even realised I’d actually received 2 more at some point (2020 was confusing, okay? We moved a lot, haha).

Last year, this was my main planner, particularly while I was furloughed and was working on my own freelance projects. I had a lot to keep up with and a schedule that changed daily. So the weekly view was perfect for scribbling things down and moving them around as needed.

Now, I’m working a traditional 9-5 and the weekly layout is a lot less useful to me. I already know what the bulk of my Monday to Friday will entail, and I don’t like the idea of mixing my day job with my freelance work, as technically anything I do in my day job doesn’t actually belong to me.

So I’m thinking the way forward is to re-jig this planner a bit and primarily use a monthly overview for the main things I need to do in a week, and then get daily pages (similar to the Daily Balance pad mentioned above) for when I have more focused days to work on Pretty Content and freelance work.

Notion

For some of my Pretty Content planning, I am using Notion. I was previously using Asana for tracking things such as blog posts, client work and personal development, but find Notion to be much more flexible.

If there’s one thing 2020 taught us, it’s that time is an illusion and, for me, I find that scheduling these tasks for certain dates isn’t really my style. I’d rather use something like Notion, where I can make lists, tables, brain dumps – anything, really – and keep it all in one place. It’s a bit like a supercharged notes app, which is basically what I need!

Hi, I'm Aisling!

I’ve spent over a decade working in agencies and startups, designing for different mediums; coding responsive, user-friendly web experiences; and converting customers into loyal audiences. Now, I am so excited to bring those years of experience to your project, and to share some of my insights on this blog!

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