Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Defining The Space Between Planning and Thinking

There are many reasons to throw one's planner out the window. One particular reason is the perpetual space created between our thoughts and our plans. How we planned something doesn't necessarily end up getting executed the same way we intended. For example, you may have planned a nap in the afternoon and instead found yourself attending to a client that really needed your input. *Ehem, Sam*.

Planner fails happen because we have failed to clearly identify our personal goals in relation to our expectation of the planner's potential. 

It's not the planner's fault you had high expectation of it! You set up these lofty ideals and then forgot to tell your planner how you were intending to set it up. Womp. Womp. Planner fail ensues. The best and quickest way out of planner fail that DOES NOT require more insert purchases is to assign your vision and intention to your planner and set it up with the end goal in mind.

Say you want to keep better track of where you are spending your time during the work week and you forgot that that's what you wanted to see as a result at the end of the week because SQUIRREL! Ideally, you will have noticed on day 2 that your tracking is not going as planned because you have failed to plan. However, if you are like me and you realized your tracking is nowhere to be found an hour before the end of the work week, proceed to the following steps:
1. IMMEDIATELY, go to the next week and pick the end date (the following Friday).
2. Write in BIG, BOLD letters: Congratulations! Tracking achieved!
3. Close your eyes and think how you will feel, yes feel, when you know you have a full week's data at your greedy little finger tips and sit with that feeling for a solid 10 seconds.
4. Open your eyes and create a tracker, tick box, hyperdex, checklist, slot for every single day working back to the day you are starting on.
5. Close planner and feel MUCH BETTER about the fact that your tracking system is now in place.
6. Refer to planner the following day and NOTICE how your end result is there WINKING at ya, helping you succeed.
Once you have your vision aligned with your planner, execution should be a lot simpler to remember and you have now set yourself up for success.

Challenge yourself with little goals like this to help you learn how to identify and prioritize your values so your planner can become a reflection of who you are and how you are evolving throughout the year. 

Planners are more than appointment keepers. They are a living, breathing record of how you are navigating your life and the medium you choose initially may not be the ideal set up for how your brain thinks. If you catch yourself failing to plan, you may have just discovered a system that does not work for you. Don't give up. Keep trying until you get to a point where your planner becomes your assistant. You can name it Jeeves. 


  1. My planners name is Bob lol..... i find if i plan the dah before i am more likely to do it so planning a week ahead and congratulating myself will make me planner queen bee thank you

  2. My planner is Agnes from Despicable Me but I envision Agnes from the Lucille Ball movie Mame. Enlightening post as usual Karine! So glad to have found you. Would love a meet up in DC or Alexandria in September/October!

  3. Karine, that is genius. You have such good planning advice. I love the podcast btw!