Merging two planners: Revamp your system

Last summer, when Erin Condren  launched their new line of Life planners, I went ahead and bought the rose gold edition because I fell in love with the new layouts and the cover. However, once again, I was a bit disappointed about everything. My previous experience with this company wasn’t so good but I let it go, I also thought that the quality of the planners was lacking, the coil of the rose planner was crooked and the planner never laid flat. I adjusted it myself but the covers got al wanky. Back when the rose gold planner was released I fell again – this time for the last time though – and bought it. It was an expensive piece of stationery! (and not worth the price).

With the planner in my hands I thought the layout is good and I was going to use this for the office but after using it for one or two weeks, I realized that this was not going to work for me. I put the planner back in my drawer waiting for an opportunity to exploit its qualities. Now, since January, after my resolution of buying less stuff in general, I chose to use the Erin Condren Life Planner as my finances planner. I am the one who manages our finances at home and having a planner only for that purpose is vital for me. It was working great but I was still feeling like I was wasting a very expensive planner.

The other side of the story is that, these days I have been reflecting a lot about what I want to do with my life now that I am a mom and need to take care of my son. Like many moms out there, I find that having a full time job doesn’t give me enough time to be with my son. I have an amazing, fulfilling job right now but it’s fast paced and it requires travel. I now have been thinking that maybe after all, I don’t want to have this kind of job, as amazing and fulfilling as it is. My son is my priority and I decided that maybe I should start creating that business I have been thinking about for many years. I decided I will go ahead and start planning it.

One can’t start designing a business or designing a job for oneself without pen and paper, especially not for a stationery addict enthusiast. I have an A5 binder that I also used very little and which has stolen my heart, reason why I still have it with me: My Fluoro Pink Original Filofax so I did the unthinkable! With the idea of creating a new business and finances binder, I decided to perform a surgery onto my Erin Condren and add it to my A5 Fluoro filofax. I have seen many ladies out there who have done this, but I always hesitated mostly because I don’t own a paper cutter and my last attempt of doing this didn’t turn out that great. I thought that maybe, this time I will be much better and if not then I will try something else.

I chopped up my erin condren planner! I tore the pages down from March to August – because only so much fits into a ring binder –  and created a whole new planner system. I am astonished of how much I now love the pages of the Erin Condren in coordination with my Filofax. Before, I wasn’t feeling the love really for the Erin Condren – needless to say that this will be the last time that I will purchase this planner, but together they work great.

My business system now comprises of:

– A goals section – that came in the Erin Condren
– My monthly and weekly pages which will also be used for my financial planning that I was already doing with this planner pre-surgery.
– My business section which includes a few subsections:
1. My business plan
2. A checklist section
3. Brand development
4. Program development
5. Contacts/People to get in touch with or offices to call
6. Financial matters and planning
7. Notes

All of the inserts are a compilation of pages from the Erin Condren Planner including the note pages, the pouch and the stickers that came with it, a mix and match of pages that I had in another binder for my notes and lists, some Filofax inserts like the “to do” inserts, and pages from here and there that I had from other planners and that I had bought from Yellow Paper House last year. I am in love!

I love how functional my Filofax is now and how customizable it is. The idea is to add and remove pages as I need them, or include and remove sections as I go and as the idea of my business starts taking shape.

Maybe, you are someone who is also starting to think about owning a business or moving on to something else and perhaps these sections and this idea will encourage you to think creatively and re-use or re-purpose pages that you had from other planners or planners that were not your top favorite. Here’s how the planner looks like now, this will be my new system, it will allow me to record important aspects for developing different areas of my business, look into what I need, think about a vision and take notes on everything that I will need as I start talking to people and getting permits and the like.

Let me know if you think this is useful. I am excited and inspired. It won’t be easy to have my own business and still do everything but if I start now and learn, hopefully I will be able to navigate things easier.

Thank you for reading!

Em J

 

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