Prune: to cut off or cut back parts of for better shape or more fruitful growth; to cut away what is unwanted or superfluous.Merriam Webster Dictionary
If we’ve connected on Instagram, then you know that I choose a word of the month to give life and meaning to my word of the year (which is No!). My monthly words often help me to implement my word of the year! I chose “pruning” for June 2021 because I wanted to get serious about certain habits and goals, mainly physical, financial, and business self-care. But what does it mean to get serious? I knew that I needed constant reminders about the goals and habits that I wanted to cultivate for personal development. Here how I use planners for self-growth and the techniques I’m using to prune my bad habits this month:
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Of course I’m using sticky notes! I use sticky notes everywhere — my planner, walls, and computer screen — to remind myself of my goals. Whether it’s a reminder to drink more water, keep God first, not spend unnecessary money on that planner purchase, or control my energy, I am constantly and consistently surrounding myself with reminders.
Did you set New Year’s Resolutions in 2021? What about yearly goals? If you’re like me, you probably set great goals in the beginning of the year or month but completely forget about them because of life. Sticky notes are a great tool to stay on track! Here are some examples of how I use sticky notes:
This recommendation is for all my journaling fans! I would love to journal every day but let’s be honest here: I journal maybe once or twice a week at this point! But when journaling, I reflect on behaviors or thoughts I’m not proud of or that need improvement. Here’s an honest example:
Your girl loves to shop.
It’s me! I’m “your girl.”
Shopping is fun and often takes my mind off stressful things. You can see where the problem happens though, right? Emotional spending is habit that I would like to prune (get rid of and replace with healthy shopping habits)! Journaling helps me to process my thoughts in actions in a healthy way.
But sometimes I don’t have time to pull out my journal every day. I use planners for self-growth in this area by keeping a few lined or blank pages in my A5 6-ring planner to jot down some reflections for the day. If long-form journaling is not for you (I completely get it), try using a sticky note or extra space in your planner layout!
Honor & Recognize. Show Grace.
I always, ALWAYS, show myself grace and you should show yourself some too! Maybe it’s too much grace but at the end of the day, I rather be the kindest person to myself. But I also know that a major part of growth is discipline, no matter how hard or uncomfortable your actions may feel. (If you want to read more about grace vs. discipline, check out this post where I shared about this struggle!)
I stop drinking coffee recently! (Hopefully, by the time this goes live I’ll celebrate at least 10 days of “sobriety”!) Although this is not the most difficult habit I’m trying to get rid of I’m proud of myself because the headaches, irritability, cravings, and overall exhaustion were not easy. So when I make progress, I recognize that.
Honor your progress, no matter how big or small. Celebrating your progress helps when pruning bad habits because it’s motivation! Those celebratory feelings help you to keep moving forward and progressing. I use my planner in this step by writing “reflections” on my weekly spreads or a sticky note to celebrate something great that happened that week with my goals! If you’re looking for an easy and low-effort way to use planners for self-growth and honor that progress, try incorporating a few celebratory sentences in your planner!
The definition of pruning does not only reflect what is lost, but what remains or flourishes due to the loss. Don’t forget to celebrate what remains!
How do you use your planner for personal development?