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Friday, September 2, 2011

Experiment revisited: Large Moleskine Day Per Page

I know what you're thinking: "How many times is she going to try (and fail) with a day per page planner?"  Well, follow me here and see what I'm thinking:

Back in December I tried using my large Moleskine day per page as my planner. I was extremely inspired by other people's usage methods of it, and even my husband suggested I use it (which you can read about here). Predictably, it failed rather quickly, which day per page planners tend to do for me because I have a hard time planning ahead effectively seeing only one day per page.

Then in January (in this post) I lamented the fact that I haven't kept a journal in a long time, but when I was doing my large day-per-page experiment I captured memories that otherwise would have slipped away. In that post I wondered if I should use the large daily as my planner and journal combined. But at the time I was gearing up for my big move from Scotland to Indonesia, and I needed a big weekly planner to get me through my move.  Now, nine months later and looking back at my question in January, the answer is: I wish I'd used the large daily as my planner and journal combined. If I had, I would have captured so many more memories.

As I wrote in my Consistency is Key post, I've finally realized it matters less whether I have a perfect capturing system. What matters is that things get captured. In an ideal world, I would have time each day to sit and write in my journal. But that requires me to get and open my journal and sit down to write in it. In reality, it's my planner that's in my hands throughout the day so if something's going to get written, it will be in there.

I went back through some of my old posts including Past vs. Future, Planner Permanence and Planning Tool/ Record of Events and noticed the theme. I'm craving the permanence of having a record of my life in a bound book. Since I can't seem to get myself to journal despite my desire to do so, I'm going to do a combined planner/ journal in my large daily Mole.  Plus my ever-wise husband has a great point: combining planning/ recording and journaling in one book will create a very complete record of my life at the time.

I was also inspired by this post on the Quo Vadis blog, scroll down to #6 where she talks about how she uses her Textagenda (day per page academic-year) as a combined planner and journal.  Also I looked back through my Textagenda from last year, and even though I didn't use it for very long the combination of planning and journaling it contains is now priceless.

I hear you: how will I plan ahead with my day per page planner? I have a couple of strategies.  In the front of the Moleskine there are monthly planners, and in the Large size planners the day spaces in the monthly calendars are big enough to write in a fair amount of detail. I also use my WeekDate Wall calendar on the fridge so my family can see it. Because it has weekly recurring events visible all the time, I can picture my week easily.

I'm using my beautiful brushed leather Success Choice cover on my large daily Moleskine, which fits easily with room to spare. Some people have asked me how I'm protecting the leather of this cover and the answer is, I'm not. In fact just today I got something sticky on it and so now there's a mark. I try not to worry about it, it just adds character and the fact is it's bound to get marks on it because my life is messy! The Success Choice cover has a fabric ribbon placemarker, so I use it to mark the current month and the Moleskine's ribbon placemarker to mark today, for easy access between my monthly and daily views.

Because I'm using my daily planner as my journal too, I use it to capture ideas, thoughts, quotes and other random things. One thing I am committed to doing is writing at the bottom of the page at least one positive thing each day. It will help me see the good in each day, which will be an especially useful exercise on those really aggravating days!  And it will be a great record of things I enjoy in my life.

I already have the 2012 large Moleskine day per page planner, so at the end of this year I can continue straight into it. 

So, please wish me luck in this new experiment! I hope it will be permanent!


  1. See? I think this is the perfect match! Monthly means things don't get lost, and you have a whole MONTH view, not a fractured week. AND you get to record your life every day.

  2. Thank you Rori! I don't know why I'm so nervous about this!! I guess because I've had so many DPP failures and I want this one to work. At the same time, I know a large week + notes format works best for me for planning, but the large daily is the best for recording and remembering. I keep telling myself if only I could sit down and journal I could use both, but after nearly 2 years of not journaling I feel like I need to be honest with myself and realize the only journaling that's going to happen is in my planner. It makes me feel weak and undisciplined, but the reality is I don't have the time or energy for multiple books. All-in-one is the way to go I think!

  3. Good luck -- this sounds like a terrific system if it works for you! Several months ago, I posted on your blog about how I had used a 2-page-per-day Franklin planner for 20+ years but was now simplifying my life to the point that I thought I could move to a page-per-week + notes type of pocket Moleskine. I tried it, and it was a total failure (appointments got jammed up to the point of illegibility; to-do's got forgotten from the previous week, etc), so I went back to the Franklin. Then just a few weeks ago, I decided to try a page-per-day pocket Moleskine, and I'm happy to say that it is working surprisingly well! Apparently it's enough space for both appointments and to-do's, and I even have space to write a few journal-like notes. I do keep a separate journal, but it's nice to have a few lines of journaling in the planner if that's all the time I have to write that day. And I, too, really like the idea of having a bound record of both events and related thoughts on the same page. So I think you're onto a good plan! Will look forward to hearing how it goes.
    - Tina

  4. So are you abandoning the XL Moleskine week + notes with the awesome aqua cover, or are you using both?

    I'm forging ahead with the XL week + notes for future planning, but I recently fell in love with the Moleskine Color a Month daily planners and bought the set to use as my daily journal/what we did/appts for 2012. I will keep them so my kids can see what we did all year (and when they complain we never do anything fun, i can whip out the appropriate month and show them.)

  5. My intention is to use the daily instead of the weekly notebook. But I'm nervous because the WN is excellent for future planning, and especially for all my weekly lists so I know I'll be tempted to go back to it. But as usual when I use a day per page, I'm already enjoying the great amount of detail I can write each day.

    The truth is both are excellent planners.

  6. Predictably, I've gone back to my XL Mole weekly notebook after just a couple of days. I should know by now that I must have my weekly lists visible alongside my weekly schedule!

    But another thing that I didn't like, surprisingly, was the large page each day. I had conflicting urges to both fill it with tasks, therefore overtasking myself for the day, but at the same time trying to save enough space for an undetermined amount of journaling. It was stressing me out! So I'm going to redouble my efforts to use it as a journal, while sticking with my XL Mole weekly notebook as my planner.

  7. What happened to the Women's success planner?

  8. I still use it at home for household stuff and cleaning schedules. But for day to day use I felt like I needed more space each day, and I want a record of more than 3 months at a time. And, I'm fickle. ;D


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