It occurred to me last week there are people, like me, who can’t live without their planners. If you are one of those people I invite you to comment, share tips/tricks and even (if possible) share a photo of your planner.
For those who don’t understand the obsession that is Planning, this post is for you.
Let me start with the addiction factor. We love lists, to be organized, to be able to cross off something in victory. There is a modicum of OCD. Or, a whole ton of OCD depending on your personal view. And, it’s no coincidence we have a thing for office supplies ; sticky notes, highlighers and pens spanning the rainbow. Everything has a purpose and a place, which brings us back to OCD.
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is nothing to a) make light of, or b) be ashamed of. I will tell you this, though. I make light of my OCD all the time. Plus, it doesn’t effect my life in the same ways it does other people (counting, colors, textiles, etc), although it used to. With a change in my life, mine has adapted. I don’t double-check the doors and windows at night to make sure they’re locked. I do still touch all the living things in the house before I go to bed. That’s been going on for years and I don’t expect it to go away. But, I digress.
I also have a touch of ADD. My planner (along with timers, alarms and Google) help keep me focused. You’d be amazed what I can get done in a day if my planner is right beside me.
Why not just use your cell for all your appointments and stuff? Tried it. Didn’t work. I need to physically be able to write things down and cross them off when I’m done. It goes along with the OCD. It’s like with books. Some books I’m good having it on Kindle. Others I have to have a copy in my hands and pages to turn. Still others I make the compromise because the Kindle price was lower and it wasn’t as important.
Sometimes the OCD and ADD have a battle. I’ll make a grocery list and forget it at home. Or, I get so focused on a task, that allotted time bleeds into the next task’s time. Then I get behind and become slightly manic. I do not like leaving something unfinished for the next day.
Then there’s the control aspect. Planning is something I can control. It makes me feel better. There are no guarantees in life, but I’ll be damned if I won’t be organized in the uncertainty. It’s almost needless to say I don’t deal well with a disrupted routine.
Have you considered therapy? Yes, and no. The point is, my planner is my therapy. It’s where I go to sort things out. Literally and figuratively. That doesn’t mean I retreat to it when I’m stressed out. It means I’ve learned to cope and manage stress in a (in my opinion) healthy way. You know how some people clean when they’re upset? Well, there you go. My body knows what’s going on, reports it to my brain and my brain says, “Planner time!” There are a hell of a lot worse things I could do other than plan and organize.
By the way, I’m actually working from 2 planners. Yes, you heard right. I’m still working out of the old one, because that’s where everything was written down. I sit once a week with both and move the stuff I absolutely without a doubt need to get done to the new one.
Which reminders me…My work schedule is going to be different the rest of the month. It’s been 4 on, 3 off the last week weeks. Now I’m looking at 7 on, 6 off starting tomorrow. Should be fun.
Here’s a fun look at planning from Lifehack. Enjoy!