So anyone who follows my blog knows that I have two planning styles. One is distinctly more popular on this blog. My bullet journal gets significantly more attention than my “main” planner. I still use both daily. I wanted to talk a little bit about why I still use my Erin Condren Life Planner and some of the main draw backs.
Starting with the basics: I just love stickers. They bring me joy. Somehow, putting them in my planner is almost meditative. I really love the art that these shops design. I enjoy it all. It’s a silly little creative outlet. I love looking through my sticker binders and choosing exactly the right sticker kit for the upcoming week.
Next thing: It serves a different purpose. I consider my bullet journal sort of utilitarian. It’s where I put a majority of my trackers from habits to moods to what I’m reading or listening to. The main purpose of my ECLP is to memory keep. I always tell people – if it doesn’t make it into my Erin Condren, it’s like it didn’t happen. I don’t put down every single small chore but rather the main things in a day. Usually I try to put the things that made me happy – what I ate, what I watched and who I saw.
I have a visual representation of major life events. I know exactly what sticker kit I used for graduation from university (the beautiful pink one with the long gold dress). Also all of my birthdays. I know what the week my best friend got married looks like. I remember the week that I planned for moving to Spain. All of that being said, somehow this makes my memories more vivid. I can remember events, conversations and even emotions better when I tie them back to a visual planner. I can’t explain exactly why but I would say that, because it’s a reflective process, I make time to remember.
I love looking back on each week. I would say for my weekly comings and goings, I significantly prefer looking back on my Erin Condren. Here in Spain I have three and I think in the states I have at least two that I can look back at. The only thing I wish is that I had taken more pictures of some of my first planner spreads since frankly they are hilarious to look at how randomly I used stickers. In general, I love taking a peek at how far I’ve come, what trends I like and also which spreads I don’t like.
So what are the drawbacks that may make you take pause?
Here’s the thing, sticker planning is expensive. Even if you do it economically, bullet journaling is fundamentally much more economical. Just baseline, with a bullet journal, you need a journal and a pen. With a sticker planner, you are going to get a Life Planner (starting at 50 bucks) or a Happy Planner (which is only $15 – but still). Then you consider adding even minimal stickers – it’s not free. Stickers cost money. So yeah – it’s not cheap.
You will take some time to come into a style that works for you (and that’s totally ok). My first few months of sticker planning are absolutely hilarious. They are random. They don’t really make any sense. The only thing I marked was the things I did at work. Now I mark all sorts of things that I may want to track or remember. That being said, my style is constantly evolving. So that’s another thing to consider.
Ostensibly, it’s a silly thing to do. Nothing that I do in my sticker planner is “necessary.” I have received some genuinely weird looks. However, all of my real and true friends totally embrace it. From my planner bestie, Erin, to most of my teacher coworkers. My sisters don’t participate in my weird planning world but are encouraging and helpful when I ask for aesthetic input. Even my man friends are supportive and will give advice for what kit I should use in a given week. I think at first, people’s reactions range from curious to judgmental. In the end, any good friend will accept your hobbies.
So definitely take this as you will. I am not saying to anyone that they should sticker plan, but if you want more information on my style, check out my post on my style here. If you want to know how to start planning in general – I have a guide here. Finally, I would love to hear from you! If you want to let me know what style suits you, please leave me a comment. If you want to follow me on social media – click onto my instagram @theminimalistabroad