How I am using my Erin Condren Life Planner


If you know me a little bit, then you know that I love everything that has to do with stationary and it comes at no surprise that I love notebooks, planners and journals.

I’ve been using the oh-so-popular (and polarizing) Erin Condren Life Planner and I am in in my third year now (although I’ve just recently participated in Kyla’s e-course “Planner Camp” which was all about designing your own planner and oh man, I need to tell you about this in a separate post sometime. It was awesome!). But back to the planner that I am currently using:  I  have mostly just wonderful things to say about the EC Life Planner.

I do a lot of scheduling and planning on my phone, especially when I need to set reminders (that is the ONE thing a paper planner cannot yet do!), but for everything else I love putting a pen to paper and the EC Life Planner has really won me over with its prettiness, the layout and the fun accessories. I don’t mind lugging the thing around in my purse either.

However, I am not going to do a full review of the Erin Condren Life Planner today, because there are plenty (!) of reviews out there in the blogging world (and most of you know the planner already anyway), but I’d love to show you a little bit how I use it.

My job doesn’t require me to do a lot of “on paper planning” during the week and therefore the weekdays stay pretty much empty during the day, except for the occasional work or doctor’s appointment.

But that is also very good, because I always used to have my planners double as journals/scrapbooks. (I used to have paper planners that had one day per page and plenty of room to write in.)

I write down things I did, thoughts and quotes. I’ve started (this year) to regularly print a selection of my Instagram pictures and add them into my planner.



In case you want to know how exactly I do this: my no-fuss method is to snip, copy and paste the photos from my account into an empty word document. I fit the Instragram photo size to the approximate size of each column in my planner (note: it’s about the right size when you fit 5 pictures (1.5×1.5 in) in one row (margins set to 0.3 in) with a space between them – to make cutting easier and leave a bit of a white frame) and then I print them on regular paper. The colors are sometimes a little bleached out, but I don’t really mind it. Then I cut them into little squares and add them to my planner.



I love that I can thumb through the pages and have little pictures, ticket stubs, receipts or other memorabilia remind me of what was going on during the week. I also use the handy stickers that come with the planner (I didn’t get them personalized, but you can!) and washi tape. Sometimes, I doodle or use calligraphy to illustrate the pages (not pictured – those pictures were taken at the beginning of this year).

Are you using a paper planner? (Maybe even an EC planner?) Is there a particular way that you use it?

  1. I love everything about this! Thanks for the tip on how you print your photos too! I think that is such a fun Idea! Do you print them on photopaper or regular paper?

  2. That is a brilliant way to use this planner! Scrapbooking style! :) I switched to a different planner b/c I tend to use it for work tasks. When I had an EC planner, I would remove pages once the month was over because it was too thick to carry around in a purse. ;-)

  3. This is such a fun & creative way to use your planner! I bought a EC planner before but I used it for all of two weeks before I gave up on it, ha. I’m just more of a digital person! But I love the idea of using it as a scrapbook of sorts, to look back on throughout the year. What a unique idea!

  4. That’s a fantastic idea!!! I use an EC planner too and I would be lost without it!

  5. Your planner is so cute! I love all of your creative touches, especially the pictures. I haven’t seen these planners before and I love the layout. I can’t wait for your planner camp recap, it sounds totally up my alley!

  6. Hm. I will google some reviews. I am not sure I need something like this in my life, but I can see how it could be fun to have….

  7. I tried using a paper journal/planner last year, but I failed miserably. I used it for a short time and then promptly forgot about it. I need alarms to remind me of basically everything so that’s when my phone calendar comes in handy.

    I LOVE what you have done though! Brilliant idea in printing and posting pictures in your planner!

  8. I love how you add the photos to your planner! I got a similar planner from an Etsy shop (Plum Paper Designs) this year, and I am loving it so far. I still rely heavily on my Google calendar for planned activities/events/appointments, but I enter all of those into my planner as well, and then I use the planner to map out my “to do” lists around all my time-restrictive commitments. I thought it might get annoying to put everything in two places (paper and electronic), but it doesn’t take long and I’ve found it to be very helpful! I also have a lot of blank space during my work days, so I may steal your idea of decorating those spaces with things to remember/reflect on throughout the year!

  9. That is a really neat idea and a great way to capture what you do each year. Very cool! I am on my 5th Erin Condren planner (I think?) and I am a customer for life. I know some people feel it is expensive but I seriously use it every day. I have a busy travel schedule and travel for both work and fun so it’s nice to have one place to write down all of my flights. I also use it to make to do lists each week and I schedule my workouts for the week, too. Lastly, I use it for meal planning. I can’t imagine not having this planner – I would be lost without it and I never leave home without it!

  10. Wait, there are people who hate the EC Planners? Is that related to paper vs. digital or do people really hate their planners and prefer a different kind of paper planner? I’m also on my third EC Planner and I LOVE it. Wouldn’t trade it for the world!

    I love that you print Instagram photos to place in your planner, so that it becomes a journal – you’re giving me food for thought! Like you, my job doesn’t require a lot of planning – but, I use the weekday space to write reminders to myself (check in with X, make dr’s appt, has order from company an arrived, etc.). I also use my planner to write in local events that we’d like to attend (such as music festivals, exhibits, etc.) just as a reminder when looking at that weekend to make other plans. The only time I really use the colored stickers are to indicate vacation days – it’s always fun to fill up my months with the days I’ll be out of town! =)

  11. After a thorough online review of REVIEWS, I have decided that this definitely not for me. I mean, it looks intriguing and all. really pretty. So tempting and all, but definitely can’t see myself using the goal lists and all that. Damn. My goal is to make it to the weekend every week. :) Anyway, now I think I need to look at it AGAIN.

Comments are closed.