How to transition from digital to paper planning

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There’s an article that’s been bouncing around in planner groups since it came out after the first of the year: The Case for Using a Paper Planner. If you haven’t read it yet, it’s definitely worth a read.

The article notes advantages of using a paper planner: writing by hand increases memory retention; the tangible aspect of pen and paper is very satisfying in a way electronics can’t match; the benefit of having your schedule, tasks, goals and lists all consolidated without having to jump from app to app. And probably the best reason for using paper: a break from screens.

The article has tips on how to find a paper planner that works for you (I have lots of tips here), then how to transition from digital to paper.

Admittedly, the hardest part for most people is dealing with recurring events and tasks when they are accustomed to receiving notifications. Some people keep these on their phone so they can receive the notifications, and add them to their paper planner. (This post has some tips on combining paper and digital planning.)

There are several ways to manage recurring tasks using paper only. The article suggests using a notes page in your planner (or you can use a booklet tucked into your planner) to keep lists of recurring tasks. Refer to these lists when you plan each month and week. What I do is write all my monthly and weekly recurring tasks and events ahead of time when I set up my planner at the beginning of the year, so they are already there when I need them. After awhile you can decide if you want to go all-paper or use some combination of digital and paper.

Have you made the transition from digital to paper planning? How did it go for you?

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