I've been thinking about something I wrote in my Planner Fail post: when I say I'm going to "make it work," that's an indicator the planner has already failed. That said, there are ways to make a planner work for you, even if it's not your functional ideal.
There are lots of reasons why you might WANT to use a planner that doesn't work flawlessly and effortlessly for you. Sometimes there's an emotional attachment to a planner and you just really want to use it. Sometimes you really could use a larger planner, but you can't stand to lug it around.
Whatever the reason, there are ways to make a planner work for you.
Issue: You need a larger page size, but want to use a smaller planner.
Ideas: One option is to write smaller. Depending on your limits of dexterity and eyesight, this could make it possible to use a smaller page size effectively.
This has been an issue for me in the past. I like a big page, but I don't always like a big book. Once I was getting frustrated with the small weekly pages in my personal Filofax. I wanted so badly to use my beautiful ivory Deco but struggled to make those small daily spaces work for me. While I was fretting about it, my husband pointed out, "You could just learn to write smaller." Actually, yes, I could.
Another option is to use a two-page spread instead of one page. This will allow you to stretch out your thoughts in a smaller book.
If you are using a ring binder, you can put an extra page in when you need more writing space. This works well in weekly pages, allowing more space for lists or particularly busy days.
Issue: You want to use a ring binder with smaller rings. There are lots of reasons for this: you love a particular binder with smaller rings; you are tired of carrying a thick binder and want to streamline; or you could use larger rings but need to stick with the binder you've got.
Ideas: The only way to use smaller rings is to have fewer pages on the rings. Evaluate what's on your rings and make some decisions about what you really, actually need to carry around everywhere with you. There are probably a lot of pages you could leave at home in a separate binder.
Another option is to use a different diary format. Weekly instead of daily will save you loads of pages. Do you really fill each daily page? Maybe you could use a weekly format most of the time and clip in an extra page for especially busy days. Also, you could use monthly pages for forward planning and only keep a few weeks of weekly or daily pages on the rings to help you slim things down.
Do you have a planner that you want to make work for you? What are your issues? Please comment so we can all give you some ideas!