Daily planner does more than just organize – it energizes

By: Carol Feineman, editor
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No later than September every year, I almost-frantically ask my office manager to order daily planners for the coming year. In my office manager’s eyes, it’s probably comparable to a little kid taking a long-awaited shopping trip with their parents for shiny pencils and bright notebooks the week or two before school starts. But I like to think of it as a big wish for a fresh start. And today, 12 years after I began using daily planners, I still get the same rush of anticipation when the stationery order is delivered, usually by late October, to the office. Then I can stop worrying about any potenial backlogs happening as I picture most businesses across the country jamming stationery stores with similar requests for calendar-tracking items. There’s just something about a brand new day planner/ appointment book, one that has never had appointments whited-out or entries postponed, which makes the coming year so full of promise. Anything seems possible in the coming months, from finding the most compelling stories about residents that will be picked up by other media outlets to covering complex topics that greatly make a difference in the everyday lives of readers. It’s a new year when anything is possible. I’m in good company about wanting a personal appointment book. Staples on Groveland Lane in Lincoln Crossing, as of Monday, has “32 feet” of a wide variety of books, according to assistant manager Katherine Massie. She said hundreds of these books are sold, with November and December being the most popular times to purchase them. When I jumped 12 years ago from being a reporter to becoming an editor, I believed a spiral-bound planner would make me better organize my time since there were so many lines to be filled in for the year. Back then, there were just a handful of day planners/ appointment book-styles available. Fast forward to today where I found more than 100 day planners/appointment books listed in our office’s 2009 Staples catalogue. Besides the basic planner, customers can today choose ones that feature environmentally friendly leather covers, different beach scenes on each daily page, recycled pages, pink-themed pages and floral images. And they come in all sizes, from 3” by 5” to 11” by 8 ½.” But the books all have one purpose in common, which is to provide space to fill in what you want to do each day. Sooner than I’d like to admit comes the inevitable chicken scratch when I have to cross out information recorded on the wrong week or squeeze a too-ambitious goal that needs more time to another already full page. But that just mirrors life. Sometimes, you make mistakes. That doesn’t stop you, however, from trying again. As I thought about this subject Saturday, when it was about to rain and the sun didn’t appear that afternoon, my spirits weren’t dampened. I was busy adding story ideas to the first few months in my day planner. And I saw a new year just days away, the 10th and final year of the decade, a year that will hopefully be full of positive growth for every resident and every organization in Lincoln. I hope your own daily planner fills up with an exciting 12 months to follow. Happy new year! Carol Feineman can be reached at