Hearts RainbowCredit: pippalou

Are you someone who tries to remember everyone’s birthdays and your next dental appointment in your head, only to find that you have one day before your friend’s birthday and that you are overdue for the dentists? Writing important dates and information down may seem like the obvious solution, but many people do not find the time or remember to do this. However, a great way to jog your memory and to remind yourself is to get into the habit of keeping a diary, planner or organizer to hand. There are countless types on the market with week by week and monthly page views. From the colorful planners to the glittery and neon ones, there is everything else available in between. But it is up to you to find one that you feel will best suit your needs.

You can customize your diary planner with stickers galore, use highlighting pens for different categories and events, and there really is no end to just how organized you could become with your new system in place! The great thing is that if you follow these three simple tips, then organizing will start to look more do-able. With summer right around the corner, perhaps you are planning a long awaited holiday or a trip to see your family and friends. Your planner could help you better structure your time management and fit in those shopping trips for clothing or swimwear, in between your busy work schedule or family life.

An organized way of life will not just increase your levels of self discipline and your general tidiness; it will also make you feel good about yourself and that you are spending your valuable time productively. It does not take long to jot something down, so even if you do not go as far as to involve stickers in your planner or journal, you will at least have a more structured and ordered day ahead of you. Let us now explore a few of the ways in which you can customize and brighten up your planner today.

Stickers 3Credit: jdurham

1. Stickers

For some people, stickers may seem excessive. For others, they are a valuable and useful visual aid when it comes to keeping a planner. For example, if you are helping an elderly relative remember specific events such as a trip to the doctors or a day out shopping, then using stickers will not only jog their memory, it will remind them of what they are doing that day, without them even reading any words on the page. But using stickers in journals and planners is not just for children either. Adults too, can enjoy the visual reference that stickers provide because there is no reason why they cannot be a great aid to everybody.

From textured ones, to three-dimensional and foam stickers, the world really is your oyster! If you like glittery flag stickers then these could provide useful page reference points. If you like more pastel shades and colors then there are countless beautiful designs out there to choose from too. There is a great website called ‘etsy’[1] which many of you will have already heard of. It was founded in 2005 and offers lovely unique, handmade and vintage products.

It is worth exploring etsy to discover all the creative talents that people have, not to mention it is great for gift ideas and inspiration. In terms of sticker ordering on etsy, many sellers do sample packs. This is very helpful to show you the sorts of stickers contained within the larger packs, and to see what suits your needs best through trial and error.

Highlighter PensCredit: xandert









2. Highlighter Pens

Who would have thought that the humble highlighter pen would be so useful! But when it comes to diary and planner organization, bright and colorful highlighter pens really can make all the difference. I use my highlighters to categorize different events or tasks that I have to complete. You could also prioritize events through the use of color coordinating. For example, red or yellow could be for very pressing appointments, and green or blue could symbolize daily chores or something similar.

Through doing this, when I open a page in my planner, I can see immediately whether there are urgent jobs or tasks which need my attention and completion. It is useful, helpful and makes all the difference, instead of simply writing with black and blue ink on every page. Information will stand out more if you use colored pens and highlighters. You will improve your time management a lot too through using them. Highlighters enable you to simply glance at an entry in your weekly page view to know what sort of events or meetings you may have coming up.

PensCredit: dhester









3. Customize Your System

So you have bought your stickers and highlighter pens, but now you are wondering just where to start with your planner. Depending on the type of planner you own, some will have weekly page views and others will have monthly ones, or a combination of the two. Over time, through trial and error, you will probably find that you use only one of these sections at a time. This will depend on the level of detail that you want to go into with your diary entries and planning generally.

StickersCredit: jdurham










In a monthly planner for example, use yellow to highlight your working days. Use bullet points or similar small symbols (or stickers) for small tasks that you may also have to complete that day. For example from picking up dry cleaning, to doing laundry or food shopping. On a weekly planner, you can be more specific with the level of detail that you include. For example, use red to underline and prioritize jobs at the top of the day, and blue to bullet point smaller and more menial tasks. How you plan your system is entirely up to you, but persevere with it, and eventually it will fall into place for you.

Below is a great video from YouTuber ‘Elle Fowler’ from her channel ‘All That Glitters 21’. In this video entitled ‘Planner 101: Intro to Glam Planning’, Elle explains all about her love of planning, and discusses the specific sorts of pens and stickers that she enjoys using.

PensCredit: chamomile

Using a diary, planner, journal or organizer can also be a great place to keep your address book and important phone numbers. I actually write gift lists in the notes section of mine too, so that I can remember what I bought my family and friends for Christmas or other special occasions!

It is not only a place to add birthdays and appointments, keeping a journal is a way to better structure your life, and to feel more confident and in control of your time management. It is a great tool which I hope you will now feel inspired and excited about starting too. With spring and summer right around the corner, why not kick start a new and more organized you with the best time management skills possible!

If you are looking for ways to boost your memory skills, to revise for exams or to increase your productivity and improve your time management, then I have also written articles on these subjects. An addition, if you are feeling in an ‘organizing’ kind of mood, then I have an article on reorganizing your closet space too.