Which type of planner (paper vs digital) should you use to meet your goals?

Posted by halliekay17

It is a New Year, so it is a good time to think about goals and how to achieve them. And which type of planner will help you meet those goals? Is it better to use an app on your phone (i.e. digital planner) or a paper planner?

As a working mom of two boys, I often feel overwhelmed on how to get everything done and stay on task to meet my goals for the year. And I especially feel this pressure when a new year has begun.

I used to be great at keeping up with goals and to do lists until about 6 years ago. What happened? I began my life into parenthood, and my life was no longer all about me. Instead I had to focus on my kids and their lives. So somewhere in just trying to keep with my kid’s lives, I have forgotten about my own.

This year is about trying to find some balance between my life and my kids. I have tried using digital planners over the last couple of years, but I end up using multiple apps for calendar, to do lists, and goals. And quite frankly, I would prefer to have something a bit larger than my iPhone to look at when planning my life. So this year I am getting back to basic by using a paper planner. It turns out there are some solid scientific reasons for using a paper planner vs a digital one to help you meet your goals.

There are scientific reasons to use a paper planner vs digital one to meet your goals:

  1. You are less distracted. Without all those annoying reminders popping up on your phone you are better able to focus on the task at hand. And not to mention that too much screen time negatively impacts your brain.
  2. You remember things better when you write them down. But there’s more to than that. Not only does writing by hand make us formulate our plans and to-do’s better, it stimulates certain brain cells at the base of the brain to increase focus. The physical action of writing simply triggers a sector of your brain turning it into maximum focus mode. Once you write down a goal, your brain will be working overtime to make you pay attention and remember.
  3. You’re more dedicated to completing your goals. By writing, we are able to clarify our thoughts and mindfully connect with exactly what we need to do, what we want and aim for. To save time, it helps to abbreviate events and certain points in your to-do. However, when thinking of your monthly, yearly and lifetime goals it really helps to be more precise. After all, there is a strong relationship between our thoughts and the language we use. Therefore, writing your goals down and carefully wording them helps you retain that goal in your mind. And think about how convenient if it’s written right there – in a planner you open every day.
  4. Reduced stress. There are many studies that show the link between writing things down by hand and mindfulness. In therapy, you are often encouraged to write things down to help you work through various stresses and thoughts. Writing is an active meditation. And exactly because of the effort it takes, you get to become more selective with words. That makes you better at defining your feelings, attitudes, and goals. As you write them down, it’s easier to deal with them appropriately.

The planner above is my Egrets and Iris design, and it is a convenient size of 5.5 inches by 8.5 inches. Perfect for moms to keep in their purse! For other planners I have listed for sale on zazzle, check them out here.

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