The Productivity Planner Review: A Roadmap to Actually Getting Stuff Done
Of all the planners in the world, I would say The Productivity Planner by Intelligent Change is the most unique. Why? Well, it doesn’t follow the typical planner blueprint. Instead, The Productivity Planner is a system more than it is a traditional planner. It’s revolutionary.
Many of us find ourselves planning, planning, planning with no actual results or progress to show for it. It feels like we spin in circles all day while being pulled in every possible direction. I struggle with this constantly. The Productivity Planner was created to cure us of this. Inside, it provides a roadmap to time efficiency, task focus, and prioritized clarity. Big statement, I know.
Before going into the nitty-gritty of The Productivity Planner’s methods, I want to go over what you won’t get from it. This is not a traditional planner. It’s not made to hold your schedule, monthly calendar, and dinner plans. The daily pages have nowhere for you to log these things. There are no calendars and the pages are undated. Don’t run away just yet, though.
The planner might not have those things, but it has much much more that other planners don’t provide. It provides a system to help you get shit done as opposed to just writing shit down. This planner is about retraining the way you approach your to-do, teaching you to manage your time realistically and effectively, and figuring out a system for truly being productive. By following the planner’s guidelines and using consistently, you can create workdays that leave you satisfied with your progress and less stressed about the next day.
Essentially, The Productivity Planner operates on a weekly rotation and each day gets its own page. At the start of every week (this can be Sunday or Monday) you prepare for the week ahead by writing down the most important tasks for the week. These are broken down into the five most important, tasks of secondary importance, and additional tasks. You also set the target time you want to spend on each task.
After you’ve written these things down, you write down your commitment for the week. This is an action you will do to make the week more productive, and is something like setting out your clothes and packing your briefcase the night before every night of the week.
The weekly planning page serves to help you set your priorities for the week. This way you know exactly what you need to get done during the week and in what order the tasks need to be completed. The target time periods help you break down your tasks into realistic and honest amounts of time, so you won’t underestimate how long something will take you. They’re also a goal for you to work toward in order to stay on schedule.
After you’ve finished your weekly planning, you move on to the daily pages. Again, these are not pages for your schedule and big events of the day. The sole purpose of these pages is to help you stick to your priorities and be productive. They’re undated, so you fill in the dates as you go, and there’s an inspirational quote at the top of every day. Many planners include quotes, but to me, these are the most inspirational. (I’m undecided if this is because they’re truly the crème de la crème of inspirational quotes or if it’s simply the vibe I get from The Productivity Planner… I digress.)
From the quote, you move on to your daily tasks. Like in your weekly planning, you break down tasks in order of importance. You have your Most Important Task of the Day, secondary tasks, and additional tasks. Each day, you’re supposed to start on your most important task and work at it until it’s done. No exceptions or excuses accepted. Next to each task, you write down your time target and when the task is done you write in the actual amount of time it took. As you complete tasks, you move on to the next.
Toward the bottom of the daily pages, there’s a space for you to write down any notes, ideas, or thoughts you might have. You can use it to track other things as well, like water intake, or jot down phone numbers or emails you need. At the very bottom of the daily pages is a scale for you to measure and record your level of productivity each day. It’s a scale from 1 to 10, and it’s up to you to determine at the beginning of every day just what equals a 10 and what equals a one. The purpose of this is to increase your awareness of your productivity and how you spend your time so you can make adjusts and improve.
After the seven daily pages of each week, there’s a page for weekly notes. This is simply a larger space for you to write down notes and information throughout the week. Following this is your weekly review. It’s a reflection tool to help you critically analyze your progress throughout the week and acknowledge all that you accomplished.
Will it Work for You?
Due to the omission of traditional planner features, The Productivity Planner needs to be used in conjunction with some other calendar or planner. I think it’s best to use a digital calendar for all of your events and meetings so that you only have to carry around one paper planner, but of course you should always do what works best for you.
In addition, there are a few people I don’t think The Productivity Planner is best for—specifically, anyone with a job who tends to be on the fly without a lot of warning. Teachers, nurses, doctors, and other similar careers that lack a preset daily plan likely won’t benefit from The Productivity Planner in their professional lives.
If you’re a freelancer, a creative, or you have a job that revolves around a lot of tasks, then you definitely can benefit from The Productivity Planner. Likewise, I think The Productivity Planner is useful for students. It teaches you how to be productive, and there’s really no better time to learn than when pursuing higher education.
The Productivity Planner is a fantastic tool. If you find yourself struggling to focus on your work and get enough tasks done every day, then this is the planner you should using. By employing the simple, effective method inside its pages, you will transform your days from hectic and frustrating to laser-focused hours of output.
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Last modified on June 1st, 2017
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