Thick binders don't work well for me. They take up too much room, and you can't stack anything on them due to their slant. So I bought an inexpensive 1/2" binder with clear plastic sleeves on the outside, a package of colored dividers/folders, a pack of clear sheet protectors, several pretty scrapbook papers, and stickers with inspirational phrases and words.
I mapped out how I wanted the planner organized then I set about to decorating it. Instead of my usual picture collage, I decided to focus on my One Word for the year, which is Peace (you can read Monday's post "One Word 2014" here). This is how it turned out.
In December, I typed up my business plan for 2014. I printed it out, slipped it into a clear sheet protector and inserted it front and center so I can see it first thing.
My business plan always includes:
A. Books I will plot, write, and revise and a tentative schedule for accomplishing this
B. Promotion (In addition to my usual social media interactions, I'm starting a new web series this year and will launch my newsletter later this summer)
C. Speaking (I've put this on the back burner this year, but other years I've been more active)
D. Continuing Education (what craft books I will study, conferences--if any--I'll attend, memberships to organizations I'll renew)
E. Freelance (I set modest goals for this)
F. Other (Spend one day of the week writing somewhere other than my home)
I used to include Income/Expenses, but I just throw my receipts in a folder now instead.
After the business plan, colored tabs divide the planner into sections. One section is for my monthly tasks. I jot down any upcoming to-do's on the appropriate page. Another section keeps track of books I've read, books I want to read, and music/art/movies I might want to check out. A section contains logs for different things like my weekly exercise plan. Naturally I have a miscellaneous file. Right now it has several Bible passages I read often.
A planner should make your life easier. It should be a one-stop place for your information. Many of you will be better served using a digital organizer on your phone, tablet, or computer.
If I don't have hard copies, I lose information. For some reason, digital day-planning doesn't work for me. That's okay. I accepted it and reverted right back to my physical planner.
How do you organize your business life? What works? What doesn't? Please share!
Have a terrific weekend!