2018 Printable Blog Planner Tips
I created this planner with a busy mama in mind. Are you her? You have a ton of things floating around in your head at any given moment. You stress all day about getting your work done, but when you finally get to your desk, the overwhelm sits in and you can’t remember where to start.
If only you could get it all out on paper so you don’t have to remember it but just work through your plan…
And here’s the thing. Your plan is different than my plan. And that’s different than another mama’s plan. I work best with long weekly lists and big sets of bullets (and extra space for the crazy last minute ideas), but you may want to have order and a plan for every day.
And that’s why I am not including a ton of instructions with this planner. Make it yours. Use it how you want. Print out all the flex sheets you want. Don’t want a youtube tracking sheet? No problemo!
With that being said, there are a few things that I put in this planner to help you make it through the year with intentionality. You don’t have to use these features in your planner this way, but I’ve found it helps me reach my goals to see everything laid out in front of me in a way that I have to interact with it.
These are the pages where you can find these hidden features and plus some tips and ideas for your planner.
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I designed the planner to be an easy printable. It’s light and bright which means it won’t use up all your ink (but if you want to save a buck, you can buy ink on Amazon for crazy cheap). And, it’s a standard 8.5×11 size so you don’t have to look around for expensive planner paper.
The planner has sections so you can print the ones you need and leave off the ones you don’t.
Feel free to have it bound however you’d like (more instructions on that below), but the planner was created with a disc-bound system in mind.
I have actually used a Happy Planner and then added the sheets from this planner in sections behind the Happy Planner (I did desperately miss the monthly checkboxes, though). I liked that I got the benefits of the Happy Planner (like that dreamy laminated cover and the monthly tabs), but also had all the robust tools from the blog planner that I needed.
But I’ve finally come up with my system for my planner that I love. I have the tough monthly dividers and the extra section dividers that make this thing feel tough and rugged, with the helpful blogging tools wrapped up in a beautiful package. Skip to the bottom of this post if you want to see what I’m doing now.
Don’t be afraid to use it how you want. <3
The first few pages are all motivational printables. Put them in between months, in every section, in a frame on your desk. Use them as a cover. Whatever. I just thought you’d like them. <3
How many of each page to print
I created this planner based on the suggestions of LOTS of business-owning mamas and we all have our own way of doing things. So, you’ll find options for various features of the planner. I encourage you to take 5 minutes and flip through the planner to decide which pages you love and which ones you can do without.
And when you do land on your favorite, be sure to print out enough for your needs. One example is that there are 3 different ways to manage your daily/weekly schedule. Pick the one(s) that work for you and make sure you have enough for 52 weeks.
So, for that reason, you won’t find a hard & fast list of how many pages to print. There are just too many ways to customize this planner. But you can find my suggestions below.
These two sheets help you achieve your goals by breaking them down into smaller, actionable lists. Add a due date. Make it real.
There are two different versions of goal planners. This is just for the people who prefer boxes over straight lines. 😉
The months are portrait and one-sided for a reason. I love to keep notes on the open side of the planner. I keep track of dates on one side, and take notes or jot ideas down on the other side. The monthly pages are great candidates to print onto thicker paper or cardstock just for this reason.
You’ll notice some little boxes above the calendar. These are tracking boxes. Use them to keep track of how consistently you’re meeting your goals for the month. Example: I had a goal to post a blog post every other day for a month. It was easy to keep track of how many I posted because I checked them off every time I finished one. You could also use these little boxes to track exercise, drinking water, product sales, etc.
I like to use the ToDo section at the bottom to highlight important tasks for the month or jot down important ideas that I get along the way.
This page is one of my absolute favorites. It’s one-sided like the monthly planner, but you can tackle an entire week (complete with brainstorming space) on one page! How awesome is that?
I use the left side to block off my days with projects or big tasks and then use the list on the right to keep track of the little things I need to do.
The Remember box is great for quotes, appointments, and goals.
You’ll want to print about 52 of these. I store them in the back of my planner and then just move them into the month as it comes along to keep it easy to flip through coming months.
This section is devoted to the free spirits like me who forget their passwords and have a lot of ideas. Sometimes you just need a blank list that matches the rest of your planner, amiright?
Use these however you’d like.
This section is for the bloggers but could be customized for online shop owners, too.
Post Ideas will help you organize your post ideas to make sure you have a strategy behind your content creation.
And the Posts page will help you make sure you cover all your bases for every post. You’ll want to print lots of these if you’re a blogger.
These are pretty straightforward and will help you keep track of engagement on your social media outlets. My favorite is the Pinterest Group Boards tracking page. When I find a board I love, I put a star next to it so I remember it’s a good one.
Many of these were requested by you. <3
Watch your blog grow with these pages. I’ve also included some handy finance tracking worksheets.
Many of these were requested by you. <3
Clients & Products
These two were created out of necessity. If you work with clients or are developing products, these might be your jam. I keep a client sheet for every client (sometimes for each month, depending on the workload) and a product sheet for every product I am working on to walk me through development and launch/promo.
Here’s where the rubber meets the road! Let’s get this thing out of your computer and onto your desk!!
This little thing is your planner. And here’s the deal. You can do this anyway you want!!
Just keep in mind, that the planner was created with a disc-bound system in mind, though. So, if you opt for a 3 ring binder, you might be punching over a letter or two. If that doesn’t bother you, then punch away. If you think it might bother you, then a spiral binding or disc bound system might be the right choice for you.
Here’s how I have used the planner in the past.
I started off the year using a super-cute 3 ring binder that I found at Target and really loved that layout (using plastic tabbed dividers). I have also gotten my planners spiral bound at FedEx or Staples with a plastic cover and plastic tabs and loved that set-up, too.
But, if you must know, there are a few reasons why I am loving using these planner pages in a disc-bound system.
The beauty of a spiral binding is that it can be small on my desk. I can have it open to one page at a time. It folds back on itself and because of the plastic covers + the bulk of the planner, it’s tough. I like that.
But, I missed the flexibility of being able to move pages around as I needed them (like moving the weekly pages to the front as it comes along so I can flip through future months easier), so I used the 3 ring binder. However, then I didn’t like how big this binder was and that to see a page, I needed some serious real estate open on my desk to open my planner. No good.
So, I’ve found the disc bound systems work amazing for both of those issues. I can have the flexibility of moving my pages around as I need to. I can have a strong book that can fold open on itself.
If you want to take a shortcut, you can use a Happy Planner like I used to (with your blog organizing sheets tucked behind the calendar). You can find a Happy Planner at local craft stores, but I wasn’t too impressed with the selection (plus, they’re taped up so you can’t flip through them there). So, if I buy another Happy Planner, I’ll look on Amazon instead.
But keep reading because I think I’ve finally cracked the code on making a DIY printable planner.
***How I’m putting my printable planner together***
If you want to build a disc bound planner yourself, it’s pretty easy. Just snag all the pieces, punch your papers (& dividers), and snap them onto the disks. You’ll have a complete DIY planner in no time. 😀
For this year’s version, I’m actually using some Martha Stewart, Arc, and Avery pieces I found at Staples. I’m so impressed with how it turned out!!
I’m definitely not needing a Happy Planner this year.
But feel free to find pieces you like locally, on Amazon or even on Etsy. These are just some readily-available suggestions below.
A list of the things you’ll want to assemble your own disc bound planner
Most brands are interchangeable, though they can vary slightly.
- Punch This one is on my list.
- Disks I like teal, but Amazon has a ton of choices (more than my local store). Watch for size here. I think mine is about 1.25”
- Plastic dividers I like actual plastic (my favorites: http://amzn.to/2iJOhoT) dividers, but Happy planner has some nice dividers, too. Be sure you have at least 12 (one for each month). I punched mine with the tiniest punch you’ve ever seen. At first you think these plastic dividers won’t budget, but they will. Just lean into it. 😉
- Month stickers To dress up your monthly tabs. I like these monthly stickers on Etsy.
- Plastic cover Make your own or go with plain like I did.
The photos of the planner are an actual bound planner with all the pages (including a weekly page for every week).