Two Planner System: An Update | Giftie Etcetera: Two Planner System: An Update

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Two Planner System: An Update

I've been working with two planners for about a month now. One planner is a Franklin Covey Classic-sized (about a half of a letter sized page) and is dedicated to work. The other is my Franklin Covey Boston compact (4 1/4 x 6 3/4 inches) and is for everything else.

I've been busily working on a project for my job during the work day, picking the kids up from afternoon carpool, and doing dinner, childcare, housework, and chauffeuring to karate practice mostly by myself, since it's my husband's overtime season at work. The work project is particularly interesting and tends to absorb my attention to the point that I have to use alarms to remind me to take my medication, eat lunch, put laundry in the dryer, check on dinner, or go to carpool.

Last night, I forgot to look at my personal planner. I did all my work tasks, picked the kids up, made supper...and zoned completely out. I didn't pack the kids' lunches or make sure that they had clean clothes. (I did watch The Voice and read a novel. It was kind of glorious.)

Other than forgetting to check my personal planner yesterday (a major fail), my two planner system is working pretty well. I wanted to shares the things that are working, in case anyone is considering a two planner system.

1. I still schedule all meetings and hard deadlines in my personal planner.

It helps that I have very few meetings and that most of my deadlines are soft. If I had constant hard deadlines, my system would be really complicated.

2. I keep work information confidential by coding meetings and hard deadlines in my personal planner to reference my work planner.

There is NO reason to put any information about my work in my personal planner, and good reason to leave the information OUT of my personal planner. I am a lawyer, and should any court or my employer ask to see my legal work, I don't want to have to give up my personal information, too.

An entry in my personal planner might say, "9 a.m. W - T/C" (which means a work-related telecom, or telephone call, at 9 a.m.). The entry in my work planner would be much more detailed, "9 a.m., T/C with ABC re: Project - Example Name." The work entry might also have goals of the telephone call or questions to get answered noted on it.

3. I schedule work in my personal planner and try to stick to the schedule.

My work schedule is flexible, but in order to get it done, I try to have to schedule certain hours in my planner.

4. All notes, meeting logs, and project planning happens in the dedicated work planner.

5. I always use the smallest planner that works effectively for my tasks.

I use my personal planner everywhere, so it must fit in my purse. For my work planner, it mostly sits at my desk (at home, since I work from a home office). If I do need to go to a meeting, I carry a larger leather bag instead that fits a classic-sized planner. I can afford to have a heavier, bigger planner. The extra space lets me take all of my research notes right there in the planner. If my job required more errands, I'd probably use a smaller planner and a notebook, instead.

So far, the system is working for me. I love having two planners. I just need to remember to keep working BOTH systems.



Anonymous said...

Do not feel like you are doing this kind of thing alone... I have used multiple planners, too, and still do so. It has been ome time since I was dealing with work, family, and college, but I had three different planners for about three years. Yes, the system worked. My school planner went to evening classes with me. My daily use planner was always with me no matter where I was (except on date nights with hubby, of course.!. I still use multiple planners. I have one just for holidays! I have one for our complete budget and tax matters. I have one that is for overall home management (a la Flylady's Control Journal). Then there is my personal planner. I use the "Desk" size Daytimer binder, but I use numerous different parts to other planners, too. I am known as the "Lady with the bright yellow planner" in my community. Those who know me expect me to be able to put my finger on information in an instant, and, most of the time, I can do just that.

Life is busy even in retirement, so I still use my multiple planners. I even have a small planner (red cover)so that my family will know where to find important information if I am not around.

In addition to all of that, I also do some page designing for planners. My daughter wanted a diet log system. I created one for her and exported the form as a pdf so that she cann print them as needed.

"Playing" with planners is both a useful thing for me and a form of recreation.

Josh LaPorte said...

So this is very interesting for me. I now have a separate work planner but am not fully transitioning into it until April first, which is rapidly approaching. I honestly have lots of info to slot into the work planner. I've been putting checklists and notes right into the work planner and so have been carrying both back and forth to work but the work planner does not go anywhere else. I still feel some angst about how this is going to work.

Christine Cortese said...

About a month ago I split out my personal and work planning and it's working fairly well. My personal is a FC compact binder which I'm using as a wallet, too. For work I've transitioned from a classic FC binder to a DayTimer Weekly/Monthly spiral bound planner. It's professional-blah in appearance but very functional: I write my weekly plan on the days I don't work, my daily plan on the days I do, and I keep a legal pad for more extensive notes, which get filed later. There is a plastic pouch in the back where I put important papers that I need to have with me when I go out, otherwise everything is in a file drawer. This is working very well and the bound planner/FC compact are lightweight when carried together in my bag. said...

I don't think I could use two planners. When I worked & kept my information separate, I didn't actually have a "planner" for work. I used outlook and a notebook. So I really only had one planner.

If I was going to do that now, I think I would use a Classic size and have two planners inside the same planner. I'd have two sets of calendars and two sets of whatever types of pages I needed. That would probably work better for my messed up brain.

Kent from Oz said...

I have a work planner (A5 Lyndhurst zip) and a personal planner (A5 Balmoral). They contain totatally separate entries. If I ever need to cross reference, I use mini post-it notes and transfer across. I always mark my work reminders in red in my personal palnner. They are usually in the form of reminders rather than detailed entries. I have used this system for over 12 months and it works for me. They look entirely different inside and I like it that way. When I combined the two originally into one planner, I was alwyas faced with work in my private life - not a good thing.

Josh LaPorte said...

Well, tried it. Spectacular failure. Ugh.