I’ve been considering a change or two in my planning system in preparation for next year, and one of these has been to rethink how I’m going to use the week to a page diary inserts. My original intention was to interleave a blank lined page between each, thus carrying on with the system that’s worked the past year or two with. Now, though, I’ve settled on having the week view for appointments and headlines, plus a To Do list to capture the things which will be needed that week.
This change has come about because I am smitten by a desire to change up the way I keep my journal. The urge or, indeed, the need, has been building to add a more concrete daily plan and review routine into my life. Since I’m going to be rocking my William Hannah notebook as my planner through 2023, it made sense to go with their Undated Daily Journaling Page. I’ve flirted with this in the past, but without much enthusiasm. Indeed, when I considered adding a more structured daily plan, I almost passed this option by. It is only very recently that I have come to a point where I think there may be a benefit to changing my ways.
The Undated Journaling Page (they also offer a dated version called the 50 Day Intention Pack) is a 2 page per day insert. They suggest you complete the first side in the morning to set your intentions for the day and then the second side at the end of the “working day” to review your thoughts. This combination didn’t sit comfortably with my current type of journal entries which are written in the morning and are very loose… free-form… scattered, even. They are not quite the stream-of-consciousness “morning pages” espoused by Julia Cameron, but they sit somewhere between that and the more structured format in the William Hannah pages.
I’ve ordered a couple of packs of the journaling pages which should arrive before the new year. I like consistency and the idea of starting a fresh format at the beginning of the year appeals, especially when it comes to archiving. However, I also support the theory that you shouldn’t wait for a milestone future point to start changes, so for the rest of December I’m going to use the new format in my existing journal notebook. That should give ample opportunity to work out my own interpretation of the given categories and I can hit 2023 on a decisive note. Mind you, after a couple of days of hand-writing the headings, it will be a miracle if I don’t start using the printed sheets as soon as they get here!
I have already come up with a plan of action is to complete the first side every morning, when I would have been writing my free-form journal entry. As I’ve just moved my desk into its winter position to make room for my Christmas tree, I feel inspired to sit there in the mornings and evenings.
During my evening session I will complete the reflection areas, which is closer to the journaling I have been doing in the morning. It is tempting to think this kind of review needs to be done at the end of the day, just before bed, but I came across the suggestion to do it before you move from your activities to your leisure time. I like the idea of sitting at my desk to wrap up the day before I head for the settee to knit, watch TV, or consume mindless social media. It’s a change of routine and I will need to work on it, but which I think will be quite beneficial.
I’ve reverted to the pens that are firmly in my comfort zone for the festive season – mainly Waterman and Cross – filled with favourite inks like the Graf von Faber-Castell Moss Green. Since my brother gifted me his Mont Blanc Slim Line, it has been living in the William Hannah pen band and I have been using it for my diary. It behaves flawlessly and, whilst part of me feels it shouldn’t be knocking around in my bag every day, it is perfectly suited to this role. I love the Montblanc Midnight Blue ink I’ve currently got in it, but when that eventually runs out I will be more than ready for a change.
I think I’ll end with a little reminder that I’ve chosen to buy the William Hannah inserts this year, but there are tons of other options out in the world which will suit the same purpose. Looking at all the lovely designs is part of the fun the stationery world brings.