Power Planning: Your Comprehensive Guide to Picking the Right Planner

By: Quinn Gawronski –

From extracurricular activities to exams to tailgates, planning is essential to stay on your A-game. Whether you’re addicted to color coding your calendar, or haven’t owned one since sixth grade, this guide is for you.

If your phone is glued to your hands, opting for an online planner is your best bet. Whether you prefer a Google calendar, the iPhone calendar app, or one of the many free online options, online planning is a streamlined way to get organized. Color code your classes and extracurricular activities to keep things separated. Syncing your email to your calendar is an easy way to automatically add important deadlines in without batting an eye.

Paper planners are a safe bet for the traditionalists. Write your assignments and exams out for the entire month so you can plan accordingly for the hell week that inevitably sneaks up on you. For smaller daily tasks like the dishes or checking email, add in a sticky note that you can easily toss without cluttering your planner. Nothing is quite as satisfying as crossing off the tasks you’ve completed. Target, Amazon, and any office supply store have a wide range of options to suit your aesthetic.

For those of you who could have a blackbelt in planning, it’s time to up your game with a bullet journal. Buy a plain journal, lined or unlined, and organize and plan as you please. Truly any notebook can work, depending on what size and style you prefer. This one from Amazon has dotted lines to keep your planning neat, without the harsh lines.

If you doodle in class more than you take notes, a bullet journal is a great way to make your distractions appear a bit more productive. This method isn’t for the weak, so don’t commit to a bullet journal unless you can find the time to make it functional.

Whichever method you prefer, organizing your to-do list is critical. Begin with bigger tasks, so you can prevent procrastinating until last minute. Choose three to five critical tasks that you have to get done, and a few smaller ones if you’re feeling especially motivated or have extra time.

Balancing all the aspects of college life can be a daunting task, but proper planning can make your life far more manageable. Step up your planner game and slay away.