The right paper planner can mean the difference between you accomplishing your goals and remaining in the same place. The best planners give you a place to jot down your thoughts, goals and dreams, free of the distractions (and cables) that come with digital devices. Your paper planner can be the gateway to achieving things you never thought possible.
But how do you go about finding a new planner without getting overwhelmed?
Take a Look at the 8 Best Planners out There
Sure, you could just settle for browsing the top-reviewed planners on Amazon or even picking one off the shelf at your local Walmart or Target. However, this process can be time-consuming and frustrating (not to mention hard on your wallet).
To help you spend more time setting and accomplishing goals (and less time comparison shopping), we’ve done the work for you. Below, you’ll find the eight best planners to crush your goals this year and beyond.
1. ban.do Planners
ban.do planners are bursting with vibrant colors and filled with the tools you need to get things done. You’ll find all the standard features such as calendars and a place to jot down to-do items. But you’ll also get some fun, distinctive touches such as an augmented reality page (you have to see it to believe it), a calendar format that goes from August to August (because why not?), and a variety of “really cool artwork by really cool artists.”
2. Day Designer
The Day Designer daily planner blends style with functionality. We’re big fans of the spiral binding, ensuring that you can lay the planner flat for easy writing. The planner has daily scheduling pages with time slots stretching from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m., prompts for gratitude, slots for to-dos, and a place to write notes. Not to mention, the protective gold corners and gold foil dated monthly tabs make the Day Designer among the most elegant and sophisticated-looking planners on this list.
3. Panda Planner
The Panda Planner promises to “change your life, or your money back.” The planner uses positive psychology and neuroscience principles to boost not just your productivity, but also your happiness. It features daily, weekly and monthly planning and goal-setting sections, as well as a place to review your goals and habits.
The overall focus of the Panda Planner is to help you get organized, eliminating superfluous distractions. The planners work in 90-day increments and are undated, meaning you can pick one up whenever you’re ready to start making a change. Purchase of a planner also includes membership to a private online community for further support and education.
4. Happy Planner
The Happy Planner is all about customization. It provides you with a basic structure, but the disc-bound design allows you to customize the order and type of pages based on your preferences. You’ll find all the features you’d expect in a quality planner, including places to set monthly, weekly and daily goals. The company also sells a variety of sticker packs for adding further customization and flair. If you want to balance creativity with organization, then the Happy Planner is a good choice.
5. Passion Planner
As the name implies, the Passion Planner focuses on helping you use your passions to guide your daily, weekly, and monthly goals. The planner will take you through the Passion RoadMap, an “exercise that helps you define your short and long-term goals and create a step-by-step game plan to reach them.” The planner is also full of motivational quotes and prompts to help you practice gratitude, as well as sketchbook pages to give you space to express your freeform creativity, unhindered by lines and boundaries.
The Erin Condren LifePlanner stands out with its selection of designer covers and range of customization options. Each planner comes with the standard monthly calendar, along with weekly spreads for each week of the month and a two-page goal setting spread. You’ll also find fun details like four sheets of coiled-in stickers, four pages of coloring book pages, and a “plan for it” pouch to hold the fun ephemera you come across in your day. The planners are available in a rainbow of colors, with select LifePlanners also available in metallic finishes.
7. Simplified Planner
The Simplified Planner aims to help you keep things simple (as the name implies). Author and entrepreneur Emily Ley first launched the planner in 2015, and since then she’s been putting out an anticipated new edition each year. The planner features daily pages with 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. hourly time slots, space for to-dos and notes, and fun features such as a place to make note of meals. Each monthly spread also includes tips for keeping things simple, helping to ensure that the planner lives up to its name.
8. SELF Journal
Last on our list, we have the SELF Journal. Sure, we’re a bit biased, but we couldn’t go without mentioning the product we built and believe in. The SELF Journal is designed first and foremost to aid in goal setting and building new habits. It’s divided into three distinct sections: daily, weekly and monthly, making sure you keep the correct level of focus at each. The SELF Journal is based on proven goal-setting science, breaking down habits into 13-week chunks that ensure you’ll actually form habits that stick.
Make Big Plans, Achieve Big Goals
The best planners can be a transformative tool for your creativity, productivity and overall well-being. We hope this article has helped you find the best planners for your needs, especially when it comes to setting (and achieving) goals you never imagined possible. There is no such thing as a perfect planner, but you should now be familiar with some of the best planners currently available.
Ultimately, the most important thing is that you set and achieve your goals. The tools are secondary, useful only to the degree that they help you along your journey. We wish you the best in yours!