E-Calendar or Paper Planner: A Comparison

We all have our favorite way to planning our hectic lives, whether it be on a paper planner or an online calendar. Or if you’re me, it’s both! I use Google Calendar (as well as just about every other function Google offers) for my online calendar and a Passion Planner for planning on paper. They offer different options and I’m going to outline some differences between the two.

Society is moving greatly to a fully electronic record nowadays. Its scary, but it sort of works, which is wonderful. I find my online calendar very useful as I can always access it, don’t have to worry about carrying it around, and can easily repeat events instead of writing them in every week. However, probably my favorite aspect of an electronic calendar is the ability to block off times. For instance, if I’m working from 7am-3pm, I can’t really plan anything during then, so having this type of layout allows me to see my available and busy times. As someone who tends to be on the busier side, seeing my free time is a breath of fresh air that I didn’t exactly find in a paper planner.

Paper planners come in all different shapes, sizes, and forms. The one I use has space to make to-do lists, note-taking space, goals for the week, and so much more. It’s meant to plan your life in a more goal-orientated manner, which works really well when I have plenty of projects to do. However, it’s not the best layout for planning all of my time.

That’s why I use both. I have one to plan my time and one to plan my projects and outline my weekly tasks. Having them separate allows me to make sure it all matches up and gives me options depending on the task at hand. For work tasks and projects, I tend to use paper planners, as I usually have projects and tasks to do. For scheduled shifts and class times, an online calendar is my best friend.

So, use one, use two, use none, it’s your choice! I do recommend using at least one as planning your day-to-day activities is crucial to staying on top of your tasks.

Images from: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.calendar and http://www.passionplanner.com/buy/passion-planner-undated-compact-sunday.

You Have As Many Hours In Your Day As Beyonce

minus the personal assistants and chefs but you get the idea!

minus the personal assistants and chefs but you get the idea!

This article was written by Lindsey Sampson, a 3rd year international affairs student at NU as a regular student contributor for The Works. Follow her blog here and/or tweet her @lindseygsampson

“You Have As Many Hours In Your Day As Beyonce.” I saw that on a sign the other day and things got so real. Just take a moment and let that one sink in. Your hours are as important as anyone else’s, and it’s your job to make your hours count. Starting your morning off right can boost your productivity all day. Here are a couple of tips to improve your morning routine:

1. Do something you love: What makes you tick? Do you love blogging or doing yoga or eating scrambled eggs? Take advantage of that. Do whatever it takes to make you look forward to waking up in the morning. Getting out of bed will still be hard, but having something to look forward to makes it much easier to take that first step.

2. Get your blood pumping: There is almost nothing less appealing than waking up and realizing you need to go to the gym. However, starting your day with exercise increases focus throughout your day and virtually eliminates morning sluggishness. Also, waking up with a morning yoga session or a jog around the neighborhood opens up your evenings for bigger, better things (like not going to the gym).

3. Eat: The amount of energy you get from an extra hour of sleep is nothing compared to the energy you get from exercise and an awesome breakfast before work. Make an egg white omelet with mushrooms, tomatoes, and cheese, or scarf down oatmeal and fruit. Fuel your body for the long day ahead instead of shoving a graham cracker into your mouth as you run out the door.

4. Make yourself a to-do list, and get started: Take a look at your day and make a quick morning strategy. To make the most effective to-do list, find one big project to finish and three to four small tasks. Finish the big project in the morning so you have plenty of time for smaller things in the afternoon. Completing the large, looming project first thing in the morning will make you feel so much more relaxed for the rest of your day.

Let’s be real – mornings are hard. But what you do in the morning dictates your productivity and attentiveness for the rest of the day. If your morning is awesome, your day will be awesome.

Lindsey Sampson is a middler International Affairs major with minors in Social Entrepreneurship and Writing. She enjoys writing about Millennials in the workplace and social media as a marketing tool. Follow her blog here and/or tweet her @lindseygsampson.