I thought it was time I shared a deeply personal, earth-shattering confession: I have a major obsession with office supplies and an even bigger obsession with planners in particular. I love planners and calendars; the problem is I also find many of them quite overwhelming. So many sections! So many accessories! So many choices! Erin Condren, Kate Spade, the Happy Planner, Lilly Pulitzer, academic planners, mom planners, family calendars, etc., etc., etc. I really can’t keep up! Yet, I can’t stay away either.
In spite of not having enough activity in my life to justify purchasing the latest planner du jour, inevitably, every few weeks, I find myself mesmerized by the overwhelming planner displays at Office Depot, Target, Barnes and Noble, and even Hobby Lobby and Michaels! In fact, just a few weeks ago, I bought another monthly planner during one of my trips to Barnes and Noble. I wrote in that one for about a week. Now, it sits on my desk. Nearly empty pages bound in a pristine pastel pink leather cover remind me of yet another $20 down the drain. (If you’d like more information about my planner plight or just have some time to waste, this
old vintage HattieVents video explains things in a bit more detail.)
What is a planner addict who is left overwhelmed by too many planner options to do? Perhaps…create her own? One day, quite by accident, I ended up browsing the calendar section on Etsy. I was happy to discover you can download just about any kind of calendar or organization system you want thanks to the creative vendors on this site. Still, after much browsing and
some quite a bit of downloading, I realized that while these planner pages were closer to meeting my needs, they were not quite right for my sometimes erratic planning habits.
When it comes to planning and organization, I begin with good intentions until I’m hit with a low mood and/or a massive dose of negativity. Some days, I may wake up in a fog; other days, I may wake up thoroughly depressed. Sometimes, that oh-so-pleasant obsessive part of my brain may bombard me with an endless to do list that leaves me completely defeated before I’ve even started anything. The more I perused the pages of Etsy, the more it seemed that perhaps I should try to develop my own planner page. A page that would work for my easily overwhelmed brain and that could help me stay on top of things even when my little dark cloud hovers above.
As a result, I am in the process of creating very simple planner pages along with weekly/monthly goal pages, to do checklists, and blog post planning pages. The plan (how many more times can I say that word??) is to open my own Etsy store. However, first I have to keep working and ignoring the little voice in my head telling me this is a bad idea. I know my pages will not be artistic like those created by graphic artists using Adobe Illustrator or InDesign, but, I’m hoping they will at least be functional for those of us who need a more simplistic way of managing our time.
To kick off this idea, and in keeping with my belief that it is important to do at least one thing even on your worst days, I have created a “You Can Do One Thing” page. This page may be downloaded for free at the link below. Please keep in mind, this page is very basic, and to someone who has never experienced depression, it may seem silly. That’s okay. It was inspired by the days when I found it difficult to get out of bed and when brushing my teeth and washing my face seemed like impossible tasks.
As with any of my posts discussing depression and coping, this document is not offered as a substitute for professional medical and mental health care. It is offered merely as a tool or starting point for someone who may be experiencing difficulty in accomplishing the daily tasks that others take for granted.
If you download the form provided, I hope it helps give you the momentum to not give up, to keep on going, and to accomplish one more thing day by day.