Color Coding, Creativity and Calendars- Oh My!



I have stated in earlier posts the importance of keeping things simple, however this is a relative expectation. For some it means one thing and others, something entirely different. Recently, I have had an epiphany about my planner style. After exploring and enjoying a bit of overly expressive calendar decorating in my planner, I have come to the conclusion that my goal for my planner is sweet, sane, simplicity. I need functional, reliable, basic layouts, with an emphasis on text not image. I prefer black and white. Or actually off white. Many of my Planner friends have extremely complicated color coding systems, in my opinion. But the fact is, it is not complicated to them. And that is all that matters. I prefer very simple highlighter accents. I have been using a very simple color coding system for a couple of months. I don’t use a lot of post its or stickers, because I realize they distract me. I use them but minimally. So, I am a “minimalist” planner person. I prefer to express my creativity more in my journal, or through other creative endeavors.


Why Some Days Require Pie

photo credit: Deiru via photopin cc

photo credit: Deiru via photopin cc


Aside of your average, run of the mill days that just go down the tubes because of unexpected twists of fate, there are days when you do the plan, but find yourself feeling…well, discouraged because you got sidetracked and for no good reason. It’s one thing when plans are waylaid by circumstances you cannot control and quite another when it is by your own hand, or choice. Days when you get off track, and start to feel frustrated with yourself, will often lead to feeling overwhelmed and discouraged and in need of a scapegoat. Obviously we can’t blame our husbands for everything (grin) so sometimes we mistakenly look to change “something” instead of looking at our own behavior objectively. Before you change those planner pages, buy a new system, living room set, makeover etc. Step back, Take a seat and have some pie! Or at least have a small slice of pie while you try to figure out how to slice up your Life Pie into appropriate portions.


Today, I had a day like THAT. A day, when I felt frustrated with everyone but most of all myself. Since I cannot change anyone else, best leave those heart desires for the prayer closet, and work on the one I can actually change, by choice, attitude or behavior. 

In the book Time Management for Busy People, Roberta Roesch suggests making Pie Charts to track your daily activities as an alternative to the usual time logs. She uses a 9-5 work day and 2 pies for her example (4 hours per pie), but I am suggesting you modify as approprate. And you can have more than a couple of  pies, I will use 4 pies on a graph paper, myself. We aren’t counting calories, after all. The idea is to list what you do in the pie quarters so you can find where that time is going. It is a great visual. At the end of the day or couple of days, underline in red time wasters and adjust accordingly.


A Practical Tip: On your mark get set, get your pen and paper and give it a try. Using graph or blank paper allow yourself 2-4 circles. Each circle represents 4 hours. You could focus on work only, or your full day. Track your activities as you proceed throughout the day. No cheating! Track ALL activities, for accurate assessment and to really hone in on what you are doing. Assess and adjust as needed by taking action.

Quotes to Ponder:  

“Our two greatest gifts are time and the freedom to choose- the power to direct our efforts in the use of that time. ” Stephen Covey

A  Prayer for  Today: 

Dear Lord, I ask you to give me clarity to see how to use my time optimally, sensitivity to your Holy Spirit in all of my choices in time and trust in you for all of my time both now and forever. In Jesus Name, I ask, Amen.

This is Day 28 of the series Planning with Purpose: 31 Days of Planner Tips

I wrote an INTRO POST here explaining everything!

I have also made designated a PAGE for it. Hope this makes it easy. I am happy to tackle a topic, or issue with regard to your planner habits.

Feel free to leave a comment or e-mail me. 

final with bigger31

I pray this series is a blessing to you. 




Everybody Wants To Be A Time Lord

photo credit: tankgirlrs via photopin cc

photo credit: tankgirlrs via photopin cc


“What’s a Time Lord?”, girl number one asked wearing a quizzical expression.

“It’s just the most awesome thing ever,” girl number two continues, “This guy who is kind of alien, but also very handsome by human standards, is the last of his species. He can travel through space and time- anywhere in the universe at any point in time! He does this in something called a Tardis, which is basically an old Blue British Police Call Box, from the sixties, but never mind about that. Best of all he likes to kick around Earth frequently, looking for companions for his epic adventures. He is on his own schedule and can go forward or back in time as it suits him, and basically he lives forever.”

That’s more or less what a Time Lord is...he doesn’t have to abide by the rules of time. 


Praying and Living with Joy (@5MFF)



Happy Beautiful Sunday Morning! On Sunday’s during October, and always, actually, we shift our eyes toward the Holy.

How are you liking the Planning with  Purpose series? Is there anything you want me to cover that I have not yet? Please let me know, and I will do my best to address it!

Today I am at 5 Minutes for Faith sharing how you can  plan for  JOY. I’ll start you here, and would you join me there?


Even More Top Tips For (Wanne Be) Planner People



Welcome to Day 25 of the Planning with Purpose Series! This post will round out the previous posts, “Top Tips For (Wanna Be) Planner People” and “More Top Tips For (Wanna Be) Planner People” and give the final 4 Top Tips. Briefly here is a list of the tips we’ve covered so far. You can head on over to the posts if you want to get more detail.


1. There Can Be Only One

2. Check your planner daily

3. Keep it Simple

4. Master Your Tasks

5. Schedule “Renewal” Time

6. Don’t Plan to Eat an Elephant



Previous Older Entries

18th Poetry Contest Winner: “Ship Bound for Madness”

Poetry Contest Winner: “The Miracle In Me”


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