The Planner- Journal Connection



I have kept a journal since childhood. Some time around early puberty I felt the need to start writing things down. I have no idea what I wrote, but I am pretty sure it had to do with a boy. Mostly all of my early writing attempts did. Teenage journaling was more boys, girl drama and additionally whatever ruffled my feathers. Mostly everything ruffled my feathers. As I grew older, relationships grew more complex, as did my rants. More boys, drama girl stories and lengthier journal entries. I don’t ever remember having a planner in school. I just followed the schedule I was shown. I did not have much of an after school life, so I lived in a planner-less limbo. I was about 20 when I began training for physique competition, attending school  and working part time at a local health club simultaneously. Suddenly, life required more of me than my little planner-less existence could muster! BAM!


Enter the planner. I toted a 3 ring, 5 subject notebook that actually doubled (tripled?) as a planner, training diary and journal. All in one. Naturally, this did not last. My life began to outgrow the limitations of one book. Not wanting all of my inner rants from the journal to be readily available (by accident or design) in a professional setting, I sought to dissolve the marriage of Planner and Journal. However, there remains that desire to have the two somehow reunited even to this day.

I continue to keep a journal and carry a planner. I consider my journal to be the place I let it all hang out. It is my life “beneath the surface”. The Planner records my superficial life, my activity, or what is  “seen”, for the most part,  of my existence.  I love both. Both have purpose in my life, and help me to live on and with purpose.

I’d say my  journal assists in reflection and remembering while my planner in planning and productivity. But they both enhance one another in all of these. I can’t imagine being one or the other. And certainly not both!

While I was preparing for this series I had the pleasure to connect with a wonderful company led by a very inspiring woman, Pamela Henrie. The company is called The Success Choice and it is one which encompasses both planning and journaling for women with a beautiful product line that facilitates mindful, reflective writing and planning. Win-Win!

Pamela kindly sent me a journal and cover to explore and I am truly excited about the quality and detail of both! I will be doing a review of these lovely items (and possibly the planner)  in upcoming posts, so be sure and stay tuned. The New Year is right around the corner- timing is perfect!

*If you do decide to purchase a journal, planner or cover, Pamela has graciously offered YOU, my readers and friends a 15% discount! I was so excited about this. Just use the coupon code: enthusiastically when you order!


Needless to say, I was pretty ecstatic when I received these goodies yesterday. So here is a very informal (do I do anything else?) first look at this product, via You Tube. Pardon my excitement…but, it’s exciting. My name isn’t Enthusiastically, Dawn for nothing, ya know!




A Practical Tip:   If you have never kept a journal, why not? There are many ways to keep a journal, in your planner or out of it. One very simple way is to make a tab at the back of your planner and add some note paper. Each day take 5 minutes and write on one thing that happened during your day, or one thing that caused you to ponder. Try sitting quietly for 5 minutes and see what comes to your mind as you reflect over the activities of your day. Write about whatever comes to your mind, a quote you read, something said that struck a cord, a news item, a heart issue pressing from within. It’s amazing where committing to 5 minutes will lead. If you are looking for journal prompts, check these here. 

Quotes to Ponder: 

“Journal writing is a voyage to the interior.” ~ Christina Baldwin

“This is what you do when you journal. You are recording God’s grand, epoch-spanning redemptive story as it unfolds in your limited, temporal sphere of existence here on earth. Your journal has the potential to record the continuation of the Holy Spirit’s work in our world!”
~Adam L. Feldman,

“This planner is a “tool” to serve you, not a source of guilt. ” ~Pamela Henrie

“We all have our ups and downs. No one escapes trials and everyone experiences failure. We all have our moments of heartache and tears; but when we pick ourselves up and contemplate what we can learn from these experiences, we are shaped and molded into incredible instruments for good. “ ~Pamela Henrie

A  Prayer for  Today:  Lord, cause me to reflect on You. You are the Creator of the heavens and earth, you never grow tired or weary, Your understanding is unfathomable. And yet we with finite mind can peek into infinity by the power of your Holy Spirit. I ask for balance in my days as I reflect on your glory and my experience this side of eternity. Grant wisdom, clarity and vision as I plan my days. May I see, with eyes fixed on You, from here to eternity. To You alone, Oh Lord, belongs all the Glory. Amen.


This is Day 18 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. 


Published by enthusiasticallydawn

Dawn Paoletta is a life enthusiast who loves to juggle words, chug coffee, and journal excessively. You can find her gathering stones on the beach most mornings. She enjoys hanging out with her hubby, daughter and family pets in Narragansett, RI and shares her passion, poetry and prose @Enthusiastically, Dawn.

12 thoughts on “The Planner- Journal Connection

  1. Hi Dawn – This has been a great series, and today’s one particularly so. I like how you say that planners and journals link together. I was wondering do you have one journal or several ie. one “dear diary” type, one spiritual etc.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Jane! I have been meaning to do a video , specifically on this- and may have touched upon it in one of my coffee chats vids. BUT, I actually prefer to keep one MAIN journal that is my go to journal for a season…then I go to the next one…and I love each one’s uniqueness in it’s season. So One main journal. However do I have any others? Yes. I do keep Gratitude / Gifts journal. Which is an ongoing list (Ann Voskamp style)…I have a “Random Journal ” which I will share soon, similar to a junk or smash book, perhaps? I also have a Quotes journal (which I confess is woefully neglected at this time…) . I will address this in an upcoming video! 😉 Thanks for asking.


  2. Dawn, may I enthusiastically say that you are such a joy! So is Kel, and I’m so grateful to her for connecting us! I resonated w/ this video and your ENTHUSIASM in so many ways! I love planners, adn as you well know, I love journals!! I went to the site, but for the life of me, click as I may, I am not figuring out how to get an image of the individual kinds of pages and features in this planner. Is there a way to see content (iow, planner guts) on the website? I think Covey and Planner Pad allow you to go to their sites, and click on images of daily pages, monthly, etc. I love how you think things through. One of my favorite things, as a teen, was to buy new school notebooks. I’d stand for hours (or nearly!) poring over the various ones b/f making my choice. Also, I’ve given much thought to planning sytems before taking the plunge. I’m stil not totally satisfied, which is why I wish I had the wherewithall to design my own (Kel and I have actually talked abuot that). One thing on this success journal: It looks smallish to me, so I’m not sure I would have enough room to write. Also, I don’t keep journal and planner in tact as one unit. My go-to journal remains an 8 1/2 X 11 artist’s sketchbook. I’ve experimented w/ a # of journals, too, and this seems to meet my needs (an unlined one). Many moons ago, I conjured an Anne Ortlund “notebook” (which I have mentioned to you, but in the end, the journal part (for me, written prayer) was hard to keep, b/c it was looseleaf. Have I shared the Sacred Journey journal/planner w/ you? Let me know, if not. Oh…..and I smiled about Jesus Callling. I did the same thing……looked it over for about four years, and finally succumbed. That’s one point where we disagree (friends always do). I don’t like it, and actually dumped it! =] But hey, we can agree to disagree, right? Thanks for a FANTASTIC series. And I LOVE the videos. They’re informative, interesting, inspirational, and you are funny at times. Just great! Keep it up.


    1. Hi Lynn, I am sorry- I am so behind in keeping up with comments , and a few other things. BUT first of all yes you can see the individual pages when you click on images then they will open from there. – I think they say “click her for larger view” or something like that. I totally get the making your own journal thing. I have sketched planners in my journal like a rocket scientist planning a launch! I also need to check out Sacred Journey Journal…not sure I know about this one, and you mentioned other planners and links I have yet to chack into…so may plans, so limited time. lol. Hugs, Lynn!


  3. I have to say, I love your blog! I also have a planner journal connection. They are both different tools to clear my mind. My journal is an empowerment / brain dump tool. This is where I dump my worries (what ifs, not sures, fears, doubts, negativity, mistakes) and it is a place for pep talk. My planner is for appointments, to do’s and tracking.


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