I’m trying something different for 2023, and I think it’ll be a good experiment. At the end of the month, I’m going to do a snapshot like I put in the treatment tracker booklet, and then I’m going to set my goals for the next month based on that snapshot. I’m not going to look really far into the future, I’m just going to think about the coming month.
I think this could be interesting for a bunch of us to do together, so I’ll detail my process in this post and you’ll be able to download a printable at the end of the post that will give you somewhere to keep track of what you’re hoping to accomplish each month.
End of December Snapshot
I have about four major categories that I use for my planner. I split some of them into sub-categories, mainly because I like my small containers.
Now, in the treatment tracking booklet, the symptoms get rated out of 5. For this, I’m not rating each area of my life. Rather, I’m writing down a sentence or two that describes the current state of affairs in each category or sub-category.
I decided not to actually rate each category because I feel like this is an entirely subjective activity, so it’s not likely to provide any truly meaningful data. I’ll be able to see how things change over time without the numerical rating because of my next step.
Once I have my descriptions written, I go back and write down a few things that could improve that area of my life. These are the things that will help me see how I’ve improved (or regressed) in each category.
Writing everything down like this is great, but also overwhelming. There’s so much to do! But I don’t have to do all of it right now. That’s the thing. This is just the jumping-off point. I’m nowhere near finished the planning. But since it is overwhelming, I’ll set it aside and move on to something else.
January’s Important Events & Appointments
While my overwhelming chart is taking a break, I can pull out my monthly calendar and my phone, and start copying events and appointments so they match. I’ll just do January right now, since that is the month I’m worried about.
Back to the Chart
Okay, time to go back to my chart. First I’ll go through the things that I can do to improve my life, noting whether each item is a project or a habit.
Project: A one-time thing, though it may take a long time to complete.
Habit: Anything you need to do regularly, whether daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly.
This helps even more with the overwhelm of the chart, because I only need to choose ONE daily habit to track this month, and I only need to choose one project per category. It’s totally manageable after all; one habit and up to six projects (max) are way easier to think about!
Now I need to be able to keep these things front & centre. I’m a Visual processor, so I’m going to use pictures (with words alongside) to illustrate my goals. I’ll divide things up on the page by category because I’m a Micro processor too. I’ll keep that page in my planner but have it where I can see it whenever I open it, just because posting it on the wall would be weird for my family.
Visual: Make a poster or fun page in your planner
Hidden: Write it all out in your planner
Micro: Do the above for each life category; don’t be afraid to have sub-categories!
Macro: Put everything together in one place
Now I have my plan for January… how do I intend to make sure the plan happens?
That’s where my weekly and daily planning come in.
I think I’ve noted before that I’m good at making plans but struggle with following through on those plans. That has absolutely not changed! My current medication makes it easier, but it’s still not a given. What I’m hoping is that this approach will help me follow through, since everything will be smaller and more immediate. I should be able to have small successes, which will help me continue to work on things.
That’s the idea, at least. We’ll see how it goes.
I’m expecting to do my weekly planning on Saturday, hopefully in the evening. I’ll start with the assessment of the previous week, to get that in my head, and then I’ll move to the next week’s schedule.
The first things I’ll put into my week are things that are (or should be) set in stone. That means transferring things from the monthly calendar and then writing in breakfast, lunch, and dinner on each day (because I forget to eat, I have to put these in). Hopefully I’ll be able to figure out an errands day at this point, too. Once I’ve got those foundations, I want to schedule time for me to “Follow my Whims” every day, as well as decompression time. Both of these are vital for me, both because I need to be able to just do whatever for a while and because, as an introvert who is homeschooling an extrovert, I need time to myself every day. These are self-care, and I need to care for myself better. Once that is all in my schedule, I am going to try time blocking again.
In case you haven’t heard of it, time blocking is basically like a loose schedule, kind of like what you have when you’re in school. One reason why I think this could work well for me (and for other ADHDers) is that it encourages loose scheduling.
When I’m making a schedule, I’m tempted to get really detailed and break out every single thing I need to do and assign it a time. Then if I get a duration wrong or something unexpected happens, my whole schedule is out the window. Time blocking forces me to be more general, because it’s more like “From 9-10 a.m. I’ll work on house-related tasks.” So what I do isn’t prescribed, it’s up to me to do whatever I can during that time period.
Don’t forget about meal planning! I have that on my weekly planning page for a reason! I’ll make sure I do that once all the scheduling is done, since then I’ll know what days we need quick meals and what days we might be eating out, etc. Then I can make my grocery list for whichever day I’ll be running errands.
Nightly I’ll do my assessment of the day and then plan the next day. My Goals and gravy will come from my chosen projects for the month, and of course my habit is from that work as well. I’ll fill out my daily planning page so that it’s easy to see what to do as I move through the schedule from my weekly page.
One thing I’m hoping to start is a monthly YouTube video. That could be a “plan with me” kind of thing, or it could be on a topic. What would you prefer? Let me know!
Literally none of the links in this post are affiliate links. I am merely providing you with the information you need to check out the resources and materials I have found useful.
The best planner for you is the planner you will use, so let’s really dig into that.
I’m going to guess that you’re reading this because you have never been able to find a planning system that really works quite right for you. You probably use a new system for a couple of weeks, or even a couple of months, but then you stop using it for some reason. The specific reason will probably be different for each person and each time, but basically it stops working because (a) it’s not new anymore so it’s less interesting, and (b) there are things about the system that are incompatible with your processing type and/or particular executive dysfunctions.
How do we figure out what we actually need? Trial and error. Which sucks.
I wish there was some nice, clear list of steps I could share to help you figure it all out, but there really isn’t. This isn’t something that has easy steps. So what I’m going to do instead is talk about the solutions I have found that are working for me, and the changes I’m intending to make come January.
Processing Type and Executive Functions I Struggle With
As I said earlier, I’m a Micro-Visual processor. I like categories and boxes but I like everything easy to see as well. As for Executive Functions, I have difficulty with almost all of them (benefits of having Combined type ADHD I guess). What I’ve recently realized is that my processing type means that not all of the things that help me will help everyone else, but also my particular issues with executive functioning mean that I’m in a good position to be able to figure out different things that will help others. Weird but true.
When I first found a planning system that worked, I followed the advice in Julie Morgenstern’s Time Management from the Inside Out. I highly recommend her books if you are also a Micro-Visual processor. Her strategies are easy to understand and adjust for different processing types, so they may help you if you’re a different type of processor as well.
Anyway, I’d been trying to use paper planners for years, but I could never find a system that worked consistently. I wound up getting a Palm Z22 (it was 2005), colour-coding and categorizing all of my tasks, and that worked for several years. When the Palm bricked itself, I switched to a Moleskine weekly planner, pocket size. It was just an agenda, and when it ended I moved to the Moleskine daily planner, regular size.
I stuck with the daily planner for several years. I liked having the full day with hours down the side so I could keep track of what I did each day as well as my upcoming appointments. There wasn’t enough room for tracking the things I wanted to track, though, so I started adding stickers and then little booklets I created on the computer. That got ridiculous.
I kept a bullet journal for a year or so, but I had to stop because I got stuck on making it pretty (which I knew was likely to happen but I loved the idea of how customizable it is) and because my hand does not do well with having to write a lot. It cramps up, and I have tendinitis in both arms anyway. Bullet journaling requires a lot of writing, even if you’re keeping it as simple as possible. So I moved to printables… which weren’t quite what I needed.
What’s Working for Me Now
My current planning system draws from Julie Morgenstern’s book Time Management from the Inside Out, the general ideas inherent to bullet journaling, a system I came up with through trial and error several years ago, BJ Fogg’s Tiny Habits, and the book The Organized Child: An Effective Program to Maximize Your Kid’s Potential—in School and in Life, by Richard Gallagher, Elena G. Spira, & Jennifer L. Rosenblatt. Overall, it’s a good system that works really well for me. There are a few little things that I need to adjust, but that’s about it.
I need to see stuff and I need to do stuff, so writing things down by hand (rather than typing them) helps me remember them better since that’s a physical action. BUT I can’t be writing a bazillion things down every day, because that will kill my hand.
I use a regular MiracleBind NotePro for my monthly/daily pages. The paper size is non-standard—9.25”x7.25”—but I design my pages especially for these books and it’s working well for me so far. One bonus is that my monthly dividers are from a regular “Classic” Happy Planner I found at the thrift store, and while they don’t fit perfectly (a little narrow) they work for what I need them for.
My weekly planner is not in a MiracleBind, but the binding is still useable, I just have to punch each page twice, with the second set of holes halfway between the first set. It’s a Steno book, meaning that its binding is across the top, and it is 6”x9”. The monthly dividers I use in this are cut from card stock. I’d link to this notebook on Blueline’s site, but I can’t find it. They may have discontinued it.
I have decorated the covers of both of these notebooks with stickers that I really like, which makes them more appealing to use.
My side planners are Filofax refillable notebooks. These take A5 paper, which is a little wider but a little shorter than a half-letter sheet. They have really nice fake leather covers, so I don’t decorate or label them; I just use different colours for different things. I have three. My first one isn’t in use much at all anymore, but I often use it to write ideas in. The other two are used for social media planning and project planning.
My monthly pages have been in my daily planner this year, but I am going to be moving that to the wall for 2023 since my husband and son need a visual system. I will probably create the pages myself so that I can have them be more functional for us all. That will also let me make changes on the fly, if certain features I try turn out to not be useful for them or for me. I received a 2-year monthly planner in my Christmas stocking this year, so I will probably use that for my personal monthly planning and still create a monthly wall calendar.
My weekly pages were a basic schedule grid this year, and it worked okay but I found that I needed a bit more detail. As a result, I’m adding onto the pages and they will be fold-out for 2023. The main part of the page will continue to be the schedule grid with a section at the bottom for weekly priorities, but I’m adding a meal planning grid that will fold out.
The back of the weekly schedule is (and will continue to be) an “Issues Log” (as per a video by “How to ADHD”) that I call “Making Life Work”. The columns are for listing what was hard this week, why it was hard, and what I can do differently next week. On the left of this table is a blank spot that will be visible from the front when the weekly page is folded up, and I’ll be using it for Post-Its with tasks I need to do this week listed on them.
My daily pages have a couple of important features. First of all, they are undated. Given my struggles with consistency, it makes more sense to write the date on a page that I’m going to use rather than have a bunch of totally blank dated pages. This also saves paper. Second, I don’t write out all of my daily tasks every single day—I’ll explain how I handle that in a moment.
This past year, the daily pages had a time tracking grid on the left half of the page, where I can write in the time and then note what I’m doing, The right half of the page had Goals and gravy, a method I figured out years ago that helps with Bad Brain Days (I explained this in this post), a place for other To-Do items, a water tracker, a place to list calls, e-mails, and texts that I needed to send, and a box for me to do Sketch a Day. In 2023, I’m modifying the right side of the page to include a daily habit that I want to work on, and I’ve done away with the extra to-dos and water tracker, replacing them with a box for a Post-It (for easy task transfer from day to day) and a box for tracking whatever I feel like tracking that day. The Sketch a Day box is now called “Distraction Depot” and I’ll be using it for Sketch a Day most of the time, but it’s also going to be great for whatever I need to use it for.
The back of the daily page is an assessment. It asks me to list one thing I missed, two things I did, and three good things about the day. Then I can rate my day out of 10, and the bottom third of the page is for writing notes and thoughts, like a journal entry.
Okay, let’s talk about my daily tasks.
One of the problems I have always had with productivity advice is the whole “choose five things for your list and stick to that”. That doesn’t work when eating, personal hygiene tasks, and laundry need to be on your list! Unfortunately, writing everything out every day is time-consuming and hard on my hand, and it results in a ridiculously long, overwhelming list of stuff to try and get through.
To deal with this, I have created a fold-out Dailies list and tracker page. It sits at the back of the month and moves over each month. My daily tasks are listed in the right column, and those line up with the little boxes that run down the edge of the daily page. When I complete a task, I colour in the corresponding box on the daily page. I am really proud of this system, not least because the folded over page functions as a bookmark so it’s easy to find the current daily page.
My project pages are based on a design I came up with when I was a church secretary. The front of the page is for details like what the project is, when it needs to be done by, and what I’m going to need in order to complete it. The back of the page is where I can figure out all of the steps I need to follow in order to do it. The front of the page also has a place in the top right corner, against the edge of the page, so I can colour it to match the life category it belongs to, which makes it easier to locate quickly. I do fill out a project page for projects that happen regularly, just because then I have all the steps written down and I can check it if I forget something.
My social media pages are just a basic grid. I’ve found that I need to make a few changes to the design of this page for 2023, but basically it numbers the weeks across the top and then lists what type of post and which social media the post should go on down the left. The boxes are where I make notes about specific topics for each day and post. At the top of the page I can fill in the month, how many weeks there are, and what the month’s theme is. I need to add a row to the main grid where I can note what printable or other item I’ll be offering that week, and some rows don’t need to have room for me to write stuff in them because I want to just use a similar type of content every time (e.g., tell funny anecdotes on Thursdays).
The last thing I have so far is a homeschooling planning page, which is a basic grid with the weekdays across the top and a column on the left for the subjects. Then I can write in what I want to cover with my son in the boxes. I haven’t tried using it yet, so I’ll have to report back once I have.
Now, I use my phone calendar for appointments because I can tell it to remind me when it’s time to leave for said appointments. I’ve experimented with a variety of ways to incorporate technology into my analog system, and I do use it where it makes sense for me. For example, I keep my grocery list in my phone.
So here’s what’s supposed to happen.
Appointments go into my phone, then onto the monthly calendar. I also record things like paydays and bill due dates that I haven’t automated on the monthly calendar.
On Sundays, I make sure the monthly calendar is up to date with my phone, and then I transfer the week’s schedule stuff over to my weekly page. I choose my week’s priorities from my current projects. Everything is colour-coded using highlighters and coloured pens (I use Pilot’s Frixion erasable pens).
Every morning (or the night before) I look at my daily page and my weekly page, and I make sure I align my daily Goals and gravy with my weekly priorities, choosing tasks from the applicable project pages.
Why This Suits Me
This system suits my Micro-Visual processing type because it lets me categorize everything while keeping things easy to understand at a glance because of the colour-coding.
Being able to see everything at once by laying out my various books and calendars helps with my Attentional Control.
Having a dedicated notebook for project planning helps me keep things simple, and having a place to write down ideas is great for dealing with issues with Cognitive Inhibition.
The assessments that I’ve included help with Self-Monitoring.
Having that constant Dailies list keeps my repetitive tasks in front of me, which makes it harder to forget them (Working Memory).
Something I would like to incorporate more is adapting my schedule to make Cognitive Flexibility easier and to allow me to indulge my impulses (Inhibitory Control). I also want to schedule my self-care tasks (Self-Monitoring).
Planning, Organizational Skills, and Goal-Directed Behaviour are not things I struggle with as much as I do these other things, but of course having a planning system is useful for all of these areas as well.
What about You?
This system is personalized for me and my needs (and the needs of my family). That means it may not work for you, particularly if you have a different processing type or struggle with different areas of executive functioning. Has this breakdown helped you figure out why past attempts at planning haven’t worked for you? Do you have ideas for what might help you moving forward? Would you like help creating a planning system that will actually meet your needs? Please comment on this post or contact me via the contact form!
This week’s printable is a collection of some of the pages I’ve created for my own use over the years. If you are unable to print things or need to have it all done for you, you will be able purchase a few different types of planners over on Lulu soon (see sidebar link). If the cost is too high, please let me know! I will look into taking preorders and having planners printed locally, then sending them out once they’re all ready. Hopefully that will keep costs down, but I have no idea right now how much that might be.
Christmas has been a bit of time off for me. I’m rather proud of myself for sticking with weekly posts over the past three months!
Next month is January. New month, new year. New goals? Maybe. I keep learning more about how the ADHD brain works and how goal-setting can be simplified for us. I hope you’ll join me next month as I jump into some new ideas!
The best planner for you is the one you will use. All of the “best planner for ADHD” posts out there have testimonials from ADHDers who use this planner or that planner, and they explain why the planner is so great for them. Same with the various planning apps.
The thing is, the features that work great for some ADHDers are awful for others, because we’re all individuals. I’ve tried to simplify everything using four types of processing and nine executive functions, but I guarantee you there are people who don’t fit any neat boxes. Sometimes all you can do is find something that mostly works for you or design your own.
Attentional Control is the ability to control what you pay attention to. It’s basically being able to concentrate. If you struggle with this, you may find it difficult to focus on the planning process and you might get confused if you have to flip pages a lot in order to see what’s going on.
A strategy that can help with this is taking an active break to reset your brain whenever you start losing focus. Walking around (or otherwise getting some kind of cardio activity in) for around 5 minutes can be great for your brain! Another strategy that could help is setting alarms to remind you what you’re supposed to be doing.
A really useful planner feature is being able to have everything visible at once during your planning. This will limit your page flipping and make it easier to see how things fit together. This may require multiple books, but a “traveler’s notebook” style of planner may work well for you, since it will hold 3-4 notebooks all together. You can then have a monthly book, a weekly book, and a daily book, and maybe even another for notes and project planning.
Cognitive Flexibility is the ability to change your behaviour and thought processes based on changes in your situation or gaining information. If you struggle with this, you may find yourself getting “stuck” when something doesn’t go the way you expected.
A strategy that can help with this problem is having contingency plans—something we talked about at the beginning of November. I find that having contingency plans lets me reduce my anxiety because I can just remind myself that if the bad thing happens, I already know what I will do so it’s not actually a problem.
Another strategy that is important for this is to make sure that you don’t over-schedule yourself. You don’t want to plan your day down to the second, because if something doesn’t work out or your schedule gets thrown off somehow, you’re going to get stuck and be unable to do anything else for the rest of the day.
The benefit of using a planner if this is one of your challenges is that you can have a section in your planner for contingency plans. You can also use the scheduling aspect to make sure that you allow for mishaps, traffic, and decompression time.
Cognitive Inhibition is the ability to tune out unrelated stimuli and stay on task or follow a train of thought. There are a couple of ways difficulty with this can interfere with planning. First, you may get distracted by new ideas. Second, you probably end up making things more complicated than they need to be.
Again, setting reminders can help you remember what you’re supposed to be doing. Another great strategy is to keep a notebook with you so you can write down your ideas and plan out projects. Sometimes just writing an idea down can help you stay on task, since then the need to follow the new!shiny! isn’t as pressing: you aren’t going to forget to pursue it, it’s written down.
A planner can serve as the place you write your ideas down, the place you look when your reminder sounds, and even the place you plan out your projects. It can also help you keep things simple.
Goal-Directed Behaviour is the ability to control your behaviour so that you’re working towards achieving goals. Problems with this include forgetting your goals, impulsively changing your goals, setting goals that are far too long-term, and impulsively doing things that either interfere with your goals or distract you from your goals.
Strategies that may help with problems in this area include visual timelines, signs to remind you of your goals (one of my uncles kept a sign on the wall in his room when he was growing up that said “WORK!” to keep him motivated to do what he needed to do to achieve his goals), and reminders.
A planner can help keep your goals front and centre. A lot of planners include goal-setting sections and instructions. A planner can also give you a reminder of what you need to do to achieve your goals, and it can help make that timeline visual.
Inhibitory Control is the ability to stop before you act so you can choose the most appropriate way to behave in a given situation. It’s got a lot to do with self-control. The biggest problem you may experience in relation to this is ignoring your to-do list.
A strategy that can help keep you on task is setting reminders for your to-do list tasks.
A planner can help with this if you make a schedule of activities that includes time to follow your whims.
Organizational Skills encompass all that sorting, putting things away, etc. The more common problems with this (aside from chaos) include feeling overwhelmed by your tasks and struggling to prioritize tasks.
Strategies that can help with this area include using methods and systems that account for your processing type and learning a few different methods for prioritizing tasks.
A planner can help with this by providing instructions and materials for prioritization. You can also look for planners and planning systems that cater to your particular processing type.
Planning is the ability to think ahead and to break goals down into smaller steps. When we have trouble with planning, it’s often because we struggle to think far into the future. I like to say that we have trouble seeing the trees for the forest (in other words, we see the big picture but have difficulty understanding the details separately from the whole). And since time isn’t real, we often have trouble knowing how long things will take.
Strategies that can help with planning include keeping calendars visible, timing out tasks so you can better estimate how long something will take, and breaking big projects down into smaller steps.
A planner can help with this because it is, at its most basic level, a calendar. If there is a section where you can work out the steps to your projects, that will also be very useful. And it can provide a good place for you to record information about how long tasks actually take.
Self-Monitoring is the ability to keep track of what you’re doing and how you’re coming across, as well as notice things like hunger, thirst, fatigue, pain, the need to use the bathroom, etc. A common problem here is over-scheduling your day so that you don’t allow time for transitions, bodily functions, etc. It’s also a huge issue with hyperfocus, where you might get so into something that you completely forget that your body has needs. And, of course, there’s the whole emotional regulation thing, where inhibitory control gets involved: we may not realize how we feel about something until we’re already reacting, because self-monitoring is hard.
Useful strategies include setting reminders to engage in self-care, which in this case means taking a shower, brushing your teeth, using the toilet, and going to bed at a sensible hour.
One way a planner can be useful here is in making appointments with yourself to look after your needs. Basically, schedule your self-care and hygiene. You can also use a planner to keep track of things like your mood, your ADHD symptoms, and various things that happen throughout the day.
Working Memory is the ability to hold information in your mind so you can use it to make decisions and complete tasks. Difficulties in this area can be seen in a tendency to forget important appointments, deadlines, or tasks, and/or to forget instructions in the moment.
Strategies that can help with this include writing down instructions as they are given to you, making daily to-do lists, and putting events and deadlines onto your calendar right away.
A planner can be helpful by being the place you write down instructions, the place you keep your to-do lists and your schedule, and a great way to keep your tasks front and centre.
In lieu of a printable, this week I want to encourage you to add the strategies and features that apply to your particular executive dysfunctions to the list from last week. Next week we’re going to look at how I’ve put all of these needs together to create my personal planning system, as well as the changes I’m going to be making for 2023 to accommodate my family members. If you are also responsible for other people’s schedules, you might add their needs to your list as well.
It’s December, and naturally we’re all thinking about the holidays (I hope last month helped you feel more prepared this year!) and about next year. What goals will we pursue? Should we even bother with New Year’s resolutions? Maybe this will be the year we finally get organized!
Well, this month I want to talk about planning and planners. Not so much goal setting and the like, though we may get into that at some point, but the actual processes of planning, choosing a planner, and creating systems that actually work for your particular challenges.
The question of how your brain actually processes information can be described using a matrix:
Visual (also Audio)
Everything Everywhere All At Once
Everything in boxes
Boxes within boxes
The planners you can buy tend to be for Micro-Hidden processors. They’re little books that you write in and carry with you, and everything is categorized and orderly, I don’t think it’s an accident that this is also the type of processor that most organizational systems are designed for. Somehow this Micro-Hidden style has become the expected “normal”, and I really don’t think it’s shocking that ADHDers tend to struggle to meet that expectation.
Most of us default to Macro-Visual, but if you think about the most functional part of your home or the type of planning you are actually good at, you’ll find which style is really “you”.
For example, I’m very much a Micro-Visual processor. I need auditory reminders, I like colour-coding my planner and my filing system, and even in the messiest parts of my home there are little pockets of organization where I have specific things in specific places.
You can also be a combination of types, just like with everything else. So as we go through strategies that may help with your executive dysfunction and planning-related issues, don’t worry too much about whether a given suggestion is meant for a specific type. More often than not, I’ll be describing the strategies as being good for either Macro or Micro processors, or as being good for either Visual or Hidden processors, rather than breaking it down into one of the four.
This idea isn’t mine. It’s from Clutterbug, a professional organizing company here in Canada. Cas (the owner) has done a show called “Hot Mess House” and she has a YouTube channel. She has ADHD, and her system for getting people’s homes organized is based on this concept. She calls each type of processor a different type of bug; I just distilled things into the base descriptors. Macro-Visual processors are “Butterflies”; Micro-Visual processors are “Bees”; Macro-Hidden processors are “Ladybugs”; and Micro-Hidden processors are “Crickets”. I highly recommend her web site and her quiz; doing the quiz is an easy way for you to figure out which type of processor you are!
The Best Planner for ADHD?
The axiom “the best planner for you is the planner you will use” is very true. I don’t think there’s one planner out there that will suit every single ADHDer, mostly because of the whole information processing thing. Couple that with our individual executive dysfunctions, and you have a lot of different planner needs. As a result, I think the most important thing is to identify the features that will help you the most and that suit your processing style, and look for a planning system that meets your needs in terms of both information processing and executive functioning. This system may end up being entirely digital, it may be entirely physical (written), or it may be a bit of both. What matters is that it works for you.
In general, though, a planning system needs to have the following features to make it truly useful:
A calendar so you can keep track of the date, deadlines, schedules, appointments, etc.
A way to keep track of your tasks, ideas, etc.
Everything else is dependent on your specific needs.
My Planner Needs
I’ve used a lot of different systems over the year, and now I make my own pages because I can’t find what I need in-store or even online.
As a Micro-Visual processor, I like to have things categorized and sorted, but I need everything in front of me at once. My husband and my child are both Macro-Visual processors, though my husband may be more of a Hidden processor in some ways and more of a Micro processor in other ways. But this means that a highly visual family calendar is most beneficial, and that keeping schedules and tasks visual for both of them—not to mention hard to miss—is essential.
You may have different needs, depending on which type of processor you are. This week’s printable is designed to help you assess your previous planning attempts, so you can start to really get a feel for what helps you and what doesn’t. Next week we’ll look at features that may help with the different executive functions. My hope is that by the end of December this year, you will better understand how you process information and what kinds of systems and strategies are most likely to help you with your specific executive dysfunctions.