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I’ve mentioned previously how the BestSelf Journal wasn’t reflecting my life right now. I also struggle with wasting space in a planner. But I also like having the sections designed for me. I know that’s contradictory and a solution would be to make a bullet journal, but that’s more work than I have the time or inclination to use for it. The end result is that I started a search for a new planner.
My criteria was fairly simple:
- it had to include a gratitude journal
- it had to focus more on each day than a project or longer goal
- optional, but I really liked the habits tracker in the BSJ
- it had to have minimal wasted space with boxes uninteresting to me
I admit Instagram played a big part in the decision-making process. I nearly ordered a Passion Planner then remembered I had tried and disliked it previously. It’s gone through a few redesigns though so I may try that next. However, the Leap Planner team threw a massive sale and that won me over.
Unboxing the Leap Planner
The external packing was extremely functional but nothing pretty. It shipped from China. I don’t know if it was from the printer or a regional distribution center, but it was fast. The team also saw I commented on one of their Instagram posts and sent me a private messaging checking in on delivery, which was nice.
Here is where I should add a disclaimer. The Leap Planner I have is a 2019 design. There’s a dated year calendar on one page; I assume that’s why it was marked down. I don’t know what other changes have been made with an updated design. All my dislikes could be rectified and all my favorite things could be destroyed. I don’t know.
I was disappointed by the physical quality of the Leap Planner. The paper is thin and see-through. I use Frixion pens, but felt tips would probably bleed. The outer cover also feels a little flimsy. I’m not sure how it will hold up to three months on my tote bag. It also doesn’t lay flat. I assume they use blu-tack to hold it for photos. There’s just the one ribbon bookmark, but I’m not sure that’s a bad thing. The layout is more linear than the BSJ, which I like.
The Leap Planner Layout
However, the real elements of a planner are in the design.
As mentioned, it’s linear, so you start with a monthly plan, then a week, then the days. After seven days you get another week, then a few weeks in, you get a month. I like this. With the BSJ I was forgetting to go back to the month because it was all the way at the start of the planner. I know the difference isn’t much but it feels like it’s better, but we’ll see.
There are some elements on the monthly pages that I won’t use. There’s a good savings goal, which lets you set a LOT of savings goals. It is one of my aims, but I’m more at the “fill my bank account” stage than having a specific purpose and number in mind. I do like the smaller boxes for each calendar day.
Weekly pages aren’t straight forward. It only has useful elements (although the meal plan is higher organization than I’m capable of), but I’m not sure where the goals review fits. Are these the monthly goals? Do you complete this for the previous week while planning the upcoming or it is one spread for each week and you come back at the end of the week for the review? I adore the tight weekly plan. I never need to list more than 3-4 appointments per day.
The daily pages is where I’ll spend the most time. The scheduler is longer than most, which I appreciate. It infers a sun-up at 4am, and night at 10pm. I find the usual 8am to 6-8pm rather limiting. A friend rightly questioned the “Biggest fail of the day” element. It’s rather negative. There’s a mood and health reflection tracker that I’ll probably ignore. The sleep and water tracker is new for me.
Even though I finished my last Best Self Journal a couple of weeks ago, I held off starting the Leap Planner until after the holidays and so I didn’t waste a month page on just a bit of December. We’ll see how it goes.
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