Cheap Planner Refills #3: Processing Future Pages | Giftie Etcetera: Cheap Planner Refills #3: Processing Future Pages

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Cheap Planner Refills #3: Processing Future Pages

In posts #1 and #2 of my Cheap Planner Refills series, I wrote about buying a cheap, undated Plan Ahead planner to provide inexpensive refills for your Franklin Covey compact planner (or as your new planner, if you don't mind fake leather) and about getting the undated pages ready to use.

Today, I'm going to focus on my process for processing my Future section of my planner onto the refills. The Future section is the part of the planner where I write anything coming up in the future, like my cousin's wedding in January 2015, before there is a calendar section for those future dates.

Normally, I process my Future section into my main Calendar section about once a month, keeping the past month, current month, and future month in the Calendar section.

But I make an exception for big upcoming months, like the first month of school (August) and the end of the year holiday season (October, November, and December), because things book up fast and ahead of time at those times of the year.

I use a Quo Vadis planner (cut up) with a yearly calendar to highlight scheduled future dates, while listing them on a blank sheet of planner paper, like so:

10/13 - Dentist 3 p.m.
10/20 - Party, Jean's house, 6 p.m. (bring gift)

10/13 will be written on the blank paper and the date will be highlighted on the yearly planner. That way, if someone calls me to substitute teach or go to a play on 10/13, I can glance and see whether I am available that day, instantly. Not highlighted? Yes, I am available. Highlighted? I need to turn to the written list and search for that date to see if I am available.

TIP: If you don't have a yearly planner, print a list of this and next year's dates off the internet and just cut down for your future planning. As you add a date to your blank future pages, highlight that date on the yearly.

Since it is currently September, I needed to process October - December future pages.

Also, if I want to make any changes in how I am setting up my weeklies/monthlies, when processing future pages is the right time to do that.

Indeed, as I copied (and subsequently scratched out) future dates onto my current pages, I made three critical changes.

1. I changed the way I write tasks from [context code] [task] to [check box] [superscript context code][task].

E Deposit check at bank...


O Deposit check at bank

This gives me a circle to check off a task or X to show that I moved or deleted it. I don't use a box because circles are more efficient to draw.

2. Since the Plan Ahead's highlight column is near the rings (unlike the Flourish, which always has the highlight column to the right), I changed the order of entries on the right side of the page.


DUE---Must Do---FYI/Should Do {RINGS} DUE---Must Do---FYI/Should Do


DUE---Must Do---FYI/Should Do {RINGS} FYI/Should Do---Must Do---DUE

As you can see, the all white area on the Plan Ahead is now due dates and must do tasks, while the grey highlighted area is only for if I get to those tasks.

3. In the monthly calendar, since Plan Ahead has a right hand blank column, I decided to use that column for notes that go along with a scheduled event (instead of putting the notes in the weeklies).

TIP: Put the notes on the column near the same week as the event that needs details. Details can include address, phone number of host, what to bring, or what to wear.

Once my future pages were done, I made another decision to fold the yearly highlighted future calendar, so I can easily peek at my blank future pages and their lists of dates. I simply folded and hole punched both sides of the yearly calendar.

You can see me in the process of highlighting the yearly calendar in the picture above. I suggest you do that AS you write new entries on the blank future pages, but I just started using a yearly calendar recently and had to catch up old entries.

TIP: If something happens yearly (like a birthday), recopy it to the Future section after it happens each year.

For me, birthday entries include a gift reminder about a week in advance (if they are getting a gift or card) and phone call reminder the day of the birthday.

ex. Alan's birthday, Jan. 22


O Buy gift

O Alan Bday

Don't be limited by the dates in your planner. Set yourself free to plan forever with a Future section.

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