The Best Planners for 2021 to Get Organized!
Updated: Jan 5, 2021
2020 is over *thank God!* But are you ready for 2021?! To be honest, for 2020 I mostly used a digital calendar via my Google Calendar. Which I guess ended up being okay with how many plans ended up being cancelled (too soon?) But I still kept feeling like I was missing something! And not just those vacations I clicked “delete” on.
I used to be a hardcore planner fan. I even color-coded everything. Writing out my week and breaking down my days on paper was a religious ritual for me. Now that I am working a full time job again AND running a small business, I felt like it was time to start putting pen to paper again and I am SO EXCITED.
I hope that you are able to use one of these planners (or a different one, comment your suggestions below!) and slowly get your life more organized.
Without further ado, and in no particular order, my planner suggestions for 2021!
GOLDEN COIL Best for: Customization
I’m 100% biased because this is the planner I just bought for my personal use! I’m stoked about the custom pages I added and a format that works for my daily life. While this isn’t the brightest, boldest planner, its clean design is simple and calming. There are over 20 different weekly and daily layouts! There are bonus pages for food, fitness, finance, project planning, lifestyle and more! One thing that can be either a negative or positive is that the planner is limited to 242 pages keeping it light; however, if you’re a daily planner like myself, this might mean you are limited on the amount of months and bonus pages your planner contains. Fortunately, you can get customized date ranges printed. This is a great option if you want to get a quarterly or 6 month planner with lots of bonus pages. You can also use this planner as a way to transition from an academic calendar to a January start planner.
Images courtesy of Golden Coil
EMILY LEY THE SIMPLIFIED PLANNER
Best for: 9-5 Work Weeks and Hourly Scheduling
I used the Simplified Planner for two years and it served me well! There’s color without being overwhelming. The daily design is clean and great if you need to schedule meetings, classes, or other timed events during a typical work or school day. The downside is that the hours are fixed so if you are planning events that are very early or very late you won’t have many options (Can’t pencil in that 5am spin class, darn!) Saturday and Sunday are also relegated to a single shared page with not much space so if you’re a weekender, this is not the planner for you.
Images courtesy of Emily Ley
Best for: Goal Setters and Start Ups
With many pages devoted to mind-mapping, progress tracking, and goal setting, this planner is great for those ambitious few wanting to create new products or content, embark on a new career, or simply want to transform themselves. However, if you're looking for a more traditional time tracking planner, the extra pages might not serve you to it's fullest extent.
Images courtesy of Passion Planner
ERIN CONDREN LIFE PLANNER
Best for: Cute Designs and Color Coders
Erin Condren planners get a lot of hype and for good reason! They are stylish and useful. Their covers and pages boast colorful prints and patterns. There are also a few different formats so you can pick the one that best suits your needs! The downside for me is that they are on the bigger side and the bold colors are a little overwhelming for me.
Images courtesy of Erin Condren
Best for: Students and Early Career Professionals
The Day Designer to me is as if you took the best parts of the Emily Ley Simplified Planner, the Passion Planner, and the Erin Condren Life Planner. The daily page design is very similar to the Simplified Planner but has all the goal setting encouragement of the Passion Planner. The covers are very attractive and visually appealing. Honestly, this was my second choice for a planner for 2021 because it checks so many different boxes! The drawback to me, similar to the Simplified Planner, is the fixed hourly daily schedule and the weekends being on one combined page. As someone who works early AMs, some late nights, and LOTS on the weekends, it wasn’t for me!
Images courtesy of Day Designer
THE MOLESKINE 12 WEEK PLANNER
Best for: Minimalism
This no-frills planner has none of the bells and whistles that other popular planners have. On the contrary, some might find its minimalist design a huge win and delight in the possibility of customizing it themselves. With no distractions or extra designs, you can focus on your tasks and plan ahead. This planner is also the smallest one on the list if you’re looking for something sleek and compact; it's perfect for traveling or throwing in your purse or briefcase.
Images courtesy of Moleskine
TARGET CREATE AND CULTIVATE
Best for: Budget
I’m not going to lie, planners are expensive. Just because you’re on a budget does not mean you are out of options. The Target Create and Cultivate planner is a great option for you. Don’t let it’s $10 price tag fool you; this planner has a lot of fantastic features (like goal-setting, mantra prompts, and to-do lists) that its $60 competitors boast and it still has a cute, aesthetically pleasing design. It's also on the smaller side making it easy to have at the ready no matter what. With its small size does come the bummer that there is not much writing space for each day. If you’re just using this planner for a few tasks or ideas per day or Big Picture planning, this is a great value.
Images courtesy of Create and Cultivate
BAN.DO UNDATED TO DO PLANNER
Best for: #coolkids and To-Do Listers
Ban.do planners have some the coolest, most eye-catching art covers. This is the newest planner in their line and it's sure to be a success. The undated daily format is perfect for flexible use. If your idea of planning is writing out your daily tasks, goals, and to-do’s for the day, this is perfect for helping you feel accomplished by the end of each day. If you’re someone who needs a planner to keep track of important dates, times, and scheduling, the undated format and lack of monthly/weekly calendars might not be the best choice for you. If the super cool art covers are what you love about this one, fortunately Ban.do has tons of other more traditional dated calendars. Images courtesy of Ban.do
TALKING OUT OF TURN PLANNER
Best for: Making a Lifestyle Changes and Living in #fullcolor
This planner is the most colorful of the bunch! Also, I'm not going to lie when I say I learned about it from a targeted Instagram ad, so it's definitely IG worthy. It has many pages devoted to goals of all kinds such health/fitness, relationships, career, mental health, finances, and more! Goal check-in and prompts are featured throughout to keep you on track through every stage of your journey! While the layout and bonus pages are nice, the fonts and bold colors may be a bit much for some.
Images courtesy of Talking Out of Turn
That's all from me for this week! I will be skipping my usual Saturday blog and taking a nice long relaxing weekend off! I hope this week brings you joy and peace of mind and as we usher in the new year!