Winding down for the year

It’s December already. For some reason, I feel excited that we are in the last month of the year. Maybe because I work at a university, I feel the mood is winding down because the term is ending. Decembers in my last job at the hospital would feel like a rush because we would scramble around looking for volunteers to help with patient services, help out with special events, decorate, etc. But since a lot of volunteers are students they’re either back home in their home state (or country) or on vacation so we’d always run short of help.

At my house, you would notice that there’s a new rug in the living room. I got it from Tumble Living on a Black Friday sale. I normally do not participate in Black Friday, but since we needed a new rug for the living room I wanted to wait until the price dropped and the next sale happened to be Black Friday. I like that it is washable and spill-proof. (Side note: This is not a paid paragraph. I’ve only experienced this rug for about 48 hours so I cannot give an honest review lol.)

Speaking of having things for some time, I decided to start using my 2023 planner. For the past 18 months, I’ve been using the Moleskine 18-month weekly planner (July 2021 to December 2022). I’ve used it every day since I received it back in July 2021 and will continue to use it until the end of the year. I’ve enjoyed using my Moleskine. I love that it is light, the pages are thin, and overall it was a surprisingly durable softcover planner — the book remains intact even after all this time plus a few liquid spills. I even considered getting the Moleskine for 2023 but I came to realize that the one-page weekly format was no longer working for me because I write so much stuff like Lana’s school deadlines, my daily to-dos, family appointments, auto-payment reminders, etc. Also, I needed more blank pages to jot down the monthly finances, goals, to-dos for home projects and creative projects, brain dump, and sketches.

When researching for my next planner for 2023, I came across Jibun Techo from Kokuyo. It looks very slim, but there are actually three books in the planner. The main book which is the planner already has a template for monthly finances, goals for the year, favorite quotes, books read, restaurants visited, recommendations from people, etc. The “Life” book is for long-term goals and recording life’s moments. The “Idea” book only has blank pages. Since it’s my first time using the Jibun Techo, I bought the “First Kit” which already comes with three books plus the notebook jacket. If I decide to use Jibun Techo next year, I would only buy next year’s planner as a refill. Hopefully, this might lead me to planner peace. I wonder how long the plastic cover will last? I may need to get a sturdier notebook cover later on.

Left: Moleskine August 2021-December 2023. Yes, I did name my planner after my blog. Right: Kokuyo Jibun Techo 2023 planner.

I am trying to get into the practice of writing every day. I decided to give myself 25 minutes a day. I think the 25 minutes has to be uninterrupted, I don’t think it’s effective to have 5 minutes here and 15 minutes there and another 5 minutes later. I’ve thought about creating a writing habit for some time but it seems so overwhelming. I decided that the 25 minutes could apply to any type of writing forms such as writing on this blog — not necessarily writing a post a day, but more like writing to draft a post. Or it could be writing in my notebook about whatever is on my mind or an idea further elaborated on paper. As far as finding the time to do it, well I think it requires a bit of flexibility though I am someone who prefers a routine. If I want to keep it a routine, I think it would require me to wake up even earlier to write. 8pm or 9pm sounds soothing but sometimes it can be unpredictable if my kid wants to stay up and hang out and I end up writing past 10 pm. Right now it’s 10 pm, but it’s a Friday night. Hopefully writing 25 minutes a day will lead me to write more content for the blog.

Tag: Weekend Coffee Share

11 thoughts on “Winding down for the year”

  1. Someone recently turned me to Rocketbook, which is a reusable notebook. I find that to be helpful as I have been trying to get back to writing. It might be a good idea for a planner as it can be scanned into the phone.

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  2. Good morning!
    Thanks for the info on planners. I haven’t used one since leaving my job. But I love looking at that stuff and fantasizing about being organized 😍 Now I keep all appointments in my phone calendar and use notes for other reminders.
    Good luck with your daily writing goals! I hope you find a routine that works for you. 💜

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    1. Thank you! What I love about my planner is that I don’t have to fumble through my phone since everything is compartmentalized on an app. All I have to do is turn the page. Plus it’s my excuse to use fun colored pens and stickers :-P.

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  3. One of my goals will be more writing time as well. I struggle with NO inspiration, I sit and stare at a blank screen. I don’t have much luck with prompts either.

    I LURVE my Rocketbook! I was introduced to it by my coworkers a few months ago and shared it on my blog. I used it for both work and home. It’s nice if you prefer handwriting things, then you can scan it into your computer.

    I prefer to type, so I’ve been using Penzu, a free online journal. Always open to new ideas and really want to improve my writing in 2023.

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    1. I’ve heard good things about Rocketbook. Sometimes I go blank when it comes to writing too. Maybe I should keep a running list of things I should write about rather than keep it all in my head.

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    1. That’s great to hear, Jennifer. I feel I find myself writing to draft/edit posts. But again, I only set aside a few minutes a day but it does make a difference.

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