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It’s my favorite time of the year: new years! I love my planner and I love goal setting, so this time of year is always really exciting for me.
Every year I evaluate my current planner and decide how to set up my Passion Planner for the next year. For 2021, I’ve decided to keep the basics the same, and make a few updates to the back pages.
In the past, my monthly spreads have gone mostly unused. But over the course of the last year, I’ve really nailed down a monthly spread that I like and use regularly.
The bulk of the monthly spread is my gratitude log. Every morning, I go to the monthly spread and write down one thing I was grateful for the day before. Then, when the month is done, I can flip to it and see all of the amazing things I experienced, even if it felt like a shitty month.
Habit Tracking Calendars
In the sidebar, I converted the three boxes into mini calendars where I can track habits I’m trying to work on. I tracked quite a few things over the course of 2020: exercise, water intake, showering, skin care, reading… No matter what I tracked, I loved having it in a calendar format.
But the thing that made it really difficult was actually *creating* the calendar. It’s hand-drawn, so I have to measure it and draw it out, and it can be a little stressful. I’ve tried to find sellers on Etsy who sell these pre-made but was unsuccessful. I seriously thought about investing in a Cricut for myself just to make these little squares. Instead, I sat down this past weekend and drew all of them out for the whole year while watching a movie. Now I won’t procrastinate setting up my monthly spreads so long!
I also got a bunch of these header tabs from Chelsea Brown Designs (in Blue Blossom size Medium) so I can write in whatever habit I want to track.
In the To Do List section of the monthly spread, I write out my goals for the month. There are 4 boxes, so I do Home in the top left box, Personal in the bottom left box, blog in the top right box, and work in the bottom right box.
Mind Map Area
Last year, in the Space of Infinite Possibility, I wrote out a monthly work reflection that was separate from the monthly reflection spread. I’ve realized that I want that space for other things instead, so that space is a little bit TBD for 2021, which is kind of exciting! I have the feeling I’ll put stickers in those spots, like these habit trackers or ones from the Passion Planner sticker packs.
I’m setting up the weekly spreads just like I set them up last year. I use the main section to log how I spent my time (instead of, yunno, to plan how to spend my time), because my plans change often and I don’t want to have most of my planner scribbled out. 😂
(This is my spread from December 2019, hence mentions of going out to dinner and seeing movies.)
I then use the to do list section for my weekly to do list.
I’m not 100% sure what to do with the Space of Infinite Possibility on the weekly spreads, and I don’t regularly use the weekly focus or Good Things That Happened boxes. Any suggestions there are very welcome!
Then my favorite section, the back pages! This is the part of the Passion Planner that most resembles a bullet journal. There’s a bunch of flexibility, but I use it for things I want to track all year. (I use the back pages of my Passion Planner Daily for shorter-term tracking.)
First up is my TV tracker. I’ve done this for several years now, and I love it. It’s nice to look back on all the things I’ve watched over the year (last week, for example, I thought to myself “wow, we watched McMillions this year?!“). But it also has the hidden benefit of making things like watching TV feel productive! 😂
I simply write out the name of the show, and then draw boxes for however many seasons (or episodes, if there’s only one season) that show has. Then, once I’ve completed a box, I fill it in with the color for that month.
(Here’s my TV Tracker from 2019).
Similarly, I set up a spread for the movies I’ve watched throughout the year. In 2020, I set up two complete spreads, one for movies in theatres and one for movies streamed. That was… a waste of a spread. 😂 I only saw two movies in theatres all year.
This year I’m going back to a single spread for all movies, because it’s unclear when I’ll feel safe seeing a movie in theatres again. I set this spread up in reverse from the TV spread: I start with a box, then write the name of the movie after it. I fill in the box with the color for the month I watched it in.
(This is my movie spread from 2019, hence the large number of movies seen in theatres.)
TV and Movies to Watch
After the trackers, I have a spread devoted to TV and movies I want to watch. It includes a column to designate if I’ve started it or not, plus a column for which platform to watch it on. There are so many things to stream, so it takes a bit of anxiety off my shoulders if I write it down somewhere.
In 2020, I had one whole spread for each, but by the end of the year I had just less than one page filled out for each, so I combined them into one this year.
Trackers for Specific Entertainment Projects
Next I have trackers for two specific entertainment projects I’m working on: watch all of the Marvel movies (plus Agents of SHIELD and Agent Carter) in chronological order, and listen to all episodes of 99% Invisible (which is part of my 101 in 1001 list).
Just like with the other trackers, I’ll fill in the box with the coordinating color for the month I finish that episode or movie.
On a similar note, Sean and I recently signed up for Masterclass, so I added a tracker for all of the classes we want to take.
There’s a row of boxes for each class, with a box for each lesson that I can color in each time I finish one.
And finally, I’ve got a spread that lists out the different cocktails I want to learn from memory!
This is another item from my 101 in 1001 list. I want to learn 15 specific cocktail recipes from memory, so each time I learn one, I’ll fill in the box!
Now if January could hurry up and arrive so I can start using my new planner, that would be great!
(P.S. If you’ve never used a Passion Planner before, you can get $5 off your first purchase of $15 or more when you use my link! Plus, I’ll get $5 toward my next purchase—a win-win!)
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