The Myth of Planner Peace


I recently wrote a guest blog post for, an adorable stationary store that sells affordable planning supplies and cute stationery with FREE(!) global shipping on every order (use my coupon code PAPERHOARD15 to save 15%). It’s the tale of how I was the worst bullet journaler in the history of bullet journals, if you wanted to read all about my fails.

Writing about my history with planning got me thinking about the idea of planner peace. It’s an elusive concept that many of us in the planner community chase after, and while some claim to have it I think it’s quite telling that the same bloggers who write about “finally reaching Planner Peace” end up writing another post about “finally reaching Planner Peace” a year later.

What the Hell is Planner Peace?

For the uninitiated, the idea of planner peace is simply this: the vague idea that a specific planner setup will bring total harmony and balance in your life. Having the perfect planning system will make you eat better, work better, laugh better… Basically, it’s like achieving nirvana via a planner.

It’s an attractive promise and a compelling one because it’s seemingly feasible. I’m a strong believer in the life-changing magic of keeping a planner and I’m sure many people who start planning quickly realize the benefits of having one. Once the gears are in motion it’s not too far of a stretch to start believing that a planner can perfect, not simply change, one’s life.

Planner Peace is a Lie.

Maybe there really are people who have achieved planner peace. There are certainly many (many, many) better people than myself. But I just don’t buy it. Mainly because I don’t think that temporary planner compatibility = Planner Peace.

Often the excuse for “losing” planner peace is that circumstances have changed, but you shouldn’t have to toss your old system and buy five different planners because you’re going to a different school, switched career paths, or started a family. What’s the point of reaching planner peace if you’re forced to search for it time and time again?

So What IS the Point?

Life is dynamic, constantly in motion, and a planning system should adjust and grow with you. By disavowing the search for planner peace I’m not suggesting that no one should ever experiment with different planners or setups. I just think that it should be a rational search for a functional tool rather than some mythic quest for the Holy Grail of planners.

I make small adjustments to my planner all the time and in the past year I’ve been using three different planners to help manage my increasingly complicated life. I can’t lay claim (and I can’t ever see myself claiming in the future) to achieving planner peace but I get my work done and I never miss appointments. I don’t know about you but that’s good enough for me.

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