The Secret Weapon for Getting Organized…A Post-It Note Planner!

If you have spent any time on Pinterest at all you will know that ORGANIZATION boards are a BIG deal! People LOVE anything and everything related to being ORGANIZED. If you have spent any time on MY Pinterest boards…you will see there is NO board about organization. :-)

Now don’t get me wrong…I like to be as organized as the next person (well maybe not the really CRAZY organizers!), but my main objection to “getting organized” is my irrational fear that it will somehow impede upon my “free spiritedness”. I think I am one of those very rare (dare I say….ODD) people that can only be described as obsessive compulsive hippie freak! It’s the Pisces in me I tell ya!  “The zodiac sign that is symbolized by two fish swimming in different directions pointing at the Pisces inner tensions”.  See?  It’s not my fault. :-)

So, that being said, I have the tendency to shy away from anything resembling a planner, or a schedule or a organizational board. But lately the stuff on my plate has been piling up and threatening to spill off the edge! I just have too many things running around in my brain, that I desperately need to put down on paper somewhere to alleviate some of the mental pressure.

And as much as I loathe the idea (and have been procrastinating it!) I felt a glimmer of hope today when I ran across this idea from Jen at

It’s brilliant in its simplicity and just off-beat enough to make me feel like it was meant for me! Plus it’s pretty and colorful….a major bonus in my book! I was actually so smitten by the idea that despite my crazy, busy, hectic day…I MADE time to go pick up some office supplies so I could get started right away!

All you need is a spiral notebook of some sort (spiral is preferred because when open it will lie flat); a package of multi-colored Post-It Notes (I decided to go with the small, square ones); some tab dividers (optional); and a pen. (And of course I had the perfect pen for the job from my post yesterday!)

For the full rundown of how this method works…make sure and visit Jen’s website!  If she can get someone like ME excited about this…you know she’s onto something. :-)

But just for summary purposes….the idea goes something like this.

  • In a spiral notebook, set up two facing pages for each client/topic/subject/category that you want to keep organized.
  • Every new task that needs to be accomplished gets written down on a post-it note and placed on the left side if it’s PRESSING, and if it can wait awhile, it gets placed on the right side.
  • Here’s the part I like…..when a task is COMPLETED…remove the post-it note and throw it away! The GOAL is to have an empty page by the end of the day. Then you can begin moving things from the right hand side of the page to the left hand side.
  • Blank post-it notes are always “at the ready” on the inside cover of the notebook.

Here are a few photos of my beginner’s efforts:

As you can see….I spent a lot of time taking pictures of the steps leading UP TO the actual writing down of stuff. Can you say P R O C R A S T I N A T I O N ? ? ?

After I realized what I was doing….I kicked my own butt into gear and actually managed to come up with stuff for all 4 of my categories. (I actually could have kept going…but didn’t want my brain to get too confused by all this “tidying up”.)   :-)

Would you believe I was actually SWEATING after writing on all those little post-it notes? lol.  I was!  It took a lot out of me, but I actually felt a LOT better knowing that at least SOME of the stuff rattling around in my over-taxed gray matter is now safely ensconced in this little book without the fear of it just evaporating into thin air someday. It’s there until I get to rip it off the page, crumple it up and toss it in the trash! (I know…not very eco-friendly….but OH SO SATISFYING!)

In addition to being a “free spirit” with OCD tendencies…I also pride myself on being somewhat of a realist. I realize this isn’t the “holy grail” of organization…but it’s a start! And for ME…that’s ONE GOOD THING! :-)

Anyone else care to START with me????

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  1. Lori says

    To be more “eco friendly” you could save post its for tasks that will be repeated, such as “PTA Meeting today”. Maybe use a separate page just for reusable post its to keep them in one place. Once they’ve been used a few times and start losing their “sticky”, then they can be thrown away.

  2. Lucy says

    I laughed so hard reading your blog this morning! I am a gemini obsessive compulsive gypsy freak, and I am so looking forward to using this notebook method. I love that there are no date and time blanks to fill out and the system really supports “juggling” ideas and tasks. It’s so simple that it could be perfect! THANKS!

    • says

      Yay! Another one! :-) I love that about this too! No dates and time blanks to fill out! I hate that! lol.

  3. Danielle says

    I have to tell you Jillee, I LOVE your blog! I work at a hospital as a medical social worker and for good reasons many websites are blocked on their internet service, but not yours (yay!) so when I really need a break from crises and emotional interactions I just check out all your fantastic ideas and funny little blurbs along with them :) I really like this post-it organization idea as well. I am also a compulsive list-maker and although I really love it when I get a bunch of things done and can see all of the stroked out items, I think this would be a much more organized (due to the categories) and more eco-friendly way (because I’m not constantly writing and rewriting all of the things to do, just the ones I get done!). Thanks for another One Good Thing!

    • says

      You are most welcome Danielle! Thanks for leaving a comment. I’m thrilled to know I can help alleviate, in some small ways, what must be a very stressful job! Keep up the great work you do! :-)

  4. says

    I am SO not a “planner organizer” person. More of the wing it, free-spirit type. I like using post it notes with my list for the day or I like to use my chalkboard for my daily planner/list. I put a check mark beside it when the task is complete and whatever doesn’t get done, goes on the chalkboard (or post it notes) for the next day.

  5. says

    I absolutely LOVE this idea!!! I am not OCD by any means with anything, but…. I’m a compulsive list-maker and always have been. I can’t stand to be boxed into anything, so a list keeps me on task. The funny thing is that my lists are not organized AT ALL. I’ve tried planners, mini notebooks, etc. It never works. Just random, scattered lists all over. I think this would def work for me! I think I would probably just use a pretty binder with page separators in place of the notebook for more durability! But I’m def trying this. Love, love, love!!!

  6. Amy says

    This so IS eco friendly! Especially if you rip up your post its and put them in your compost! :) See!? Love this idea!! Thanks for sharing!!!