Today’s trend in the Planner Community is for “pretty planning” or “functional planning”. You will find several people on YouTube, Instagram, and in Facebook groups sharing how you can keep your planner functional, but beautiful. In general, women like things pretty, and there is nothing wrong with that. Even Franklin Covey has several lines of planners that are beautiful, but intended for function. The real question is Why? Why do you decorate (or not decorate your planner)?
Since I do decorate my planner, I am not an appropriate judge of why you wouldn’t. I’ve made my planner pretty since I was a freshman in high school. That is who I am and that is what I do. Now granted in high school paper crafting was not a thing and sticker choices were limited, so my style of decor was very different. My planner was a spiral bound weekly planner with a green cover. I HATE GREEN! Forgive me, but I do. I love green in nature, and that is about it. So looking at the outside of my planner wasn’t a joy, so the inside is where I turned my attention. I used markers, colored pencils, and doodling to make the planner something that I would want to open. My planner kept track of practices, tests, homework assignments, and everything else high school kids do. It was also a place to be creative.
Fast forward to college and I got my first Franklin Planner. It was a beautiful black zip binder in compact and I felt so professional. I used this binder for years, though now I really only needed (or only used) monthly pages. I kept lists and reference documents in the other sections. I still used this planner when I was first married and scrapbooking started on the scene. I bought a few sheets of scrapbook paper and decorated my dividers. I still have this planner and I still have those dividers and it is a wonderful trip down memory lane.
Today’s planner is my Hobonichi Planner. I love that it is a blank slate that allows me to use it how it is best for me. Today’s planner is very decorated. For the purist, they may miss the function for the stamps and stickers, but for me, its those decorations that make me want to open my planner and peruse my pages. And that is the answer to my why. That is why I decorate my planner, because it makes me want to open it up and see what is inside. Regardless of the type of planner and whether it is decorated or not, if it isn’t opened, it isn’t useful.
The moral of the story: don’t worry about others, worry about you. You will know how much decor is too much or too little. Our planners are intended to serve us, not be a method of comparison and stress. So, enjoy the journey and enjoy this time of so many options.