So I’ve been using the Passion Planner Daily for almost two years now. And because it’s NaNoWriMo, I’m writing this well before it actually comes out. I figured that since I’ve done periodic planner updates, I would do another one right here.
Honestly, it’s very good. The structure of the daily pages is what drew me to this planner and it is still working for me. Once a month, I pick a gamechanger that is usually related to something about writing. This month it’s obviously drafting this new book. Last month it was getting the previous book to the point where I could put it in the hands of my beta readers. I try to work toward this larger goal every day. And usually, at the beginning of the month, I map out how much I need to get done during each day to stay on target to finish this goal. And that is my goal. If I fall behind, I don’t increase the next day’s goal. That way lies madness.
On top of that, there’s the personal stuff that I need to get done to stay functional. My daily words, which is basically a journal, or as a colleague put it, my very own daily stand up, except in digital format. My exercise efforts also go in this category. Then there is the non-day job work which goes in the “work” to-do list. This is where I put my blog posts and my vlog work.
In the “Free space to grow” I note my sleep time for the previous night and the total word count for the day. I still haven’t quite managed to figure out good uses for the four fields below this, but I have no doubt I will, eventually.
In the “Space of infinite possibility” I jot down some thoughts about the day, notes, whatever is useful. And on Sundays, this is also where I plan out my focus for the following week and do a weekly review with myself.
What would change for the ultimate planner?
Now that they’ve added the monthly pages to the front of the journal, I’m pretty good. I wish the field for the date were on the outside edge of the page instead of the inside edge of the page. Whenever I’m looking for a specific page which happens at least every time I’m doing my weekly review (to remind myself of the week’s stated goals), it’s just easier to have this info handy.
I would also love it if the planner had built-in weekly plan and review structures like they do for each month. The new planners have the monthly plans set up at the very beginning of the journal, and I would love it if each month had a similar thing in five empty weekly things.
Honestly, my gripes with this planner are tiny when compared to the amount of use I’m still getting out of it. I’m a fan, and I have already bought the equivalent of over a year’s planners. It works for my brain and my brain works well with it.
What about the day job?
I mentioned earlier that I keep my non-day job work stuff in this planner. I don’t want my day job stuff in my personal planner. For one; a lot of the day job stuff is just sensitive. I would have to have the planners destroyed by a reliable destroyer at the end of their use. But I want to keep my planners to be able to look back. So I keep a separate bullet journal for the day job. I tried keeping an electronic bujo but that just didn’t work out all that well.
The day job bullet journal is entirely according to Ryder Carrol’s minimalist standards, as described on the Bullet Journal Learn page. And it is definitely working out well for me in a way it didn’t for my personal life.
So what’s the takeaway? Keep trying out systems until you find what’s good for you and your brain. My current system doesn’t work for everyone. It might not even work for anyone but me. But it works for me. And I will keep using it for as long as it does.