The academic year restarted a few weeks ago now. As a researcher in academia, the work starts already on the 1st of September, even if I don’t have courses until mid-month. In these first two weeks before the restart of lessons, I usually have the time to organize myself the best I can.
This includes starting a new agenda. Many of my colleagues use to have a new agenda at the beginning of the solar year. But I personally prefer to start a fresh one in September.
Why? The truth is that I like to browse agendas during the summer and do my orders while relaxing with a lemonade. Not to mention that my preferred brands, Hobonichi and Passion Planner, release new versions during this period.
There is a “serious” reason, too! I like to have the possibility to check my entire academic year within a unique agenda. This is particularly useful as I often have to compile timesheets or check if they are correct. As I am involved in European projects, I have to go back and check my activities and tasks 1 or 2 times per year. Imagine having to check months of activities, meetings and tasks and at the same time struggling to find the correct agenda!
Yes, I know, there is also the digital option. You are probably right and it is also one of the reasons why I have multiple agendas, including a digital one. However, I learnt (the hard way) not to trust completely digital ones as it is so easy to delete unintentionally everything!
What is my outline for 2022-2023 and how do I set up everything?
This year I decided to have “just” two paper agendas and two additional items to be used occasionally: a digital planner and a daily one. Of course, each object has its own purpose. I have to admit that it can seem a lot, but I think I have found what on the net is called “planner peace”.
The main planner
The main planner for my everyday use is a Passion Planner. I have been with this brand for many years now. I know everything about Passion Planners and I almost love every section of it.
This is the perfect tool for planning your passions and your life, reflecting on past months and screaming (writing) loud when things go wrong. Can you imagine what would happen if this planner gets lost somehow in class or in the café? Total disaster! That’s why I stopped bringing this specific planner to university. Actually, most of the time I work from home and I go to campus only two or three days per week, so everything I need to organize can stay safe at home!
If you are familiar with Passion Planner, you may know that this is a weekly based agenda, with monthly spreads as well.
I use it for everything, starting from selecting dates and times for appointments, meetings, and classes. But the main use is the proper work organization. I often block hours of the day to accomplish specific tasks. I do not calendar block everything, like personal time, or travel time and similar, just because I do not really need to. I mainly write research and work-related tasks and activities.
A page that I love is the Passion Planner roadmap, where I set my short, medium and long-term goals. This is awesome: many things that I wrote there, really happened in my life in the end. For me, it is a law of attraction worthy section to complete a few times per year. Also, the monthly reflections are worthy, but I have to admit that I am quite lazy in completing them. I do so only for some months of the year when I feel the need.
If you like this specific planner, you can find it here (this is not an affiliate link). I personally loved the colours and the fall vibes that the cover communicates. I took the smaller one, with Monday start. I might still have a very small discount (that anyone can get) for you if you want to purchase one from this link. It is actually even on sale, so this is a good moment to pick one, if you want!
The planner that I bring to university
This is the small (very small) Hobonichi week’s agenda. In this planner I am very minimal, also because the space is not so much. This is my “public” agenda, the one that I bring with me everywhere.
Here I mainly note appointments, classes, meetings and not much more. I use the right page for jotting down to-do lists, quick notes and main tasks of the week. Sometimes I put some small stickers, but just a few functional ones.
About Hobonichi I like the paper: very thin but strong. It makes the agenda quite light and easy to carry. This year I choose a tree design that communicated to me quite and calm vibes. So much needed sometimes while running after trains and deadlines. I found it perfect for the use I make.
The daily life-jacket
The last item that composes my 2022-2023 set-up is what I call “a life jacket”: a daily agenda, also created by Passion Planner. This is not for everyday use but only for specific days when I really have a lot to accomplish. It is the perfect companion for hard days or even entire weeks when I just cannot risk losing my focus. Here I calendar block hours, sometimes even with the half-hour detail.
Of this planner, I like the fact that it reminds me that there is not only work, even on the worst day! And especially in those days, I need to remember selfcare, family and all the small things that make me happy!
It also includes very interesting pages such as the Passion Roadmap and monthly spreads, but it is undated for a discontinue use. A page that is not present in the academic Passion Planner, is the month check-in that I like and usually complete.
If you like it you can find it here.
And you, what do you think about using multiple planners for work, study or research? I would love to hear your thoughts and routines in the comment below!