Choosing your 2018 diary

August, as well as being my birthday month, is also the best bookshop month ever.

It’s when the new diaries start appearing.

I’m very clearly a paper-embracing gal and I love a paper diary, but I have had lots of back and forth within myself on which diary to buy for next year.

If you’re on my newsletter list (if not, sign up here), I wrote about this when I sent out the mid-month newsletter.

Here are a couple of questions that might help you decide on your 2018 diary:

Am I a J or a P on Myers Briggs?

This is a fun one to start with and I’ll tell you why. Js actually use their diaries; Ps like the idea of using a diary but they don’t. If you’re someone who stops using a diary by mid- or end-Jan, are you perhaps a P?

(take the test here)

Do I prefer the A6, A5 or A4 size?

Is your diary going to stay on a desk, in which case you can get a big, hefty one, or if you intend to carry your diary around with you,  you may want to opt for a smaller size no matter how much you love the bigger one.

Do I like a daily, weekly or monthly planner?

I’ve seen very few monthly planners (literally just a month at a time with maybe a picture on the top), a fair number of weekly planners and tons of daily planners.

Is everyone really a daily planner? If you are, please tell me.

Then, the fun part, if you’re a weekly planner like I am

Do you need it to start on a Monday or a Sunday, or does that not matter? Do you prefer a vertical or horizontal layout?

I saw a lovely Joyce Meyer daily diary with a weekly review layout just before each week starts. I was this close to getting it 🙂

Do you need space for notes in your regular planning, at the back of the diary or not at all?

Yes, yes and yes again for me (see the Legami planner above). I do know that some people don’t need note space.

Do you like a month-at-a-glance page before the month starts? Do you need a goals page?

I like to have an overview of the month, preferably in a block layout, not just lines running down the page, and of course I like a goals page.

What about other features that will make you like your diary more?

Do you like a bright diary or something that won’t stand out? Do you need a pen loop? Do you like perforation so you can mark where you are in the diary? Do you like a bookmark? Do you prefer hardcover or softcover?

Which of the options above do you definitely know you need?

So many things to think about! I could be very happy with 3 different diaries 🙂 and hopefully, I’ll be able to make my final choice soon (confession, I’ve bought one but I haven’t opened it because I’m not sure… I don’t want them to sell out though)

PS I asked my husband (high J!) and these are his diary preferences:

  • neutral colour (but I convinced him to get a nice blue!)
  • daily planner with times going into the evening
  • month at a view
  • notes page
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  1. Terisha says:

    I just did the quizz again whilst reading this a post and I am a P. And it’s so true, I love the idea of a diary and get super excited to buy a new one but end up not utilising it as much as I should be. HA! Though these days my memory is becoming shocking and then need for a diary is becoming greater. I usually choose a diary based on the look of it and how the days are set out. I like a weekly planner and it doesn’t matter when the week starts as I adapt easily (when I do use it that it).

    • Oh my gosh. A P?

      I love that you know what you want. Don’t beat yourself up though; once you find a system that works, you’ll be right as rain again 👍🏼

  2. MamaCat says:

    It is weird how accurate that test is. We did it in the office last year, so we all have a better idea of how to deal with each other. I love my diary, because I need to see everything in one place, which outlook and my phone are unable to produce (for me anyway).
    I have a desk diary (A4) but because I like to carry it everywhere, I need something smaller. I need something starting at about 5 in the morning, into late evening (for daily), I need the day broken into half hour time slots. I need a notes space daily. I need lines or grids, blank does not work for me. Pen loop is not important. Bookmark is important. I need a yearly glance page and a month note page for budgeting. I like having my name printed on the cover (not sure I will manage that next year).
    I need a slot to catch loose sheets which I stick into the diary.
    This year I have found I also include little personal notes, like a proper memory keeping diary.

    • Wow – your diary has to work hard. Have you found one that meets your requirements? I think I saw some at Exclusives that would work for you. Even the large Legami which is between A5 and A4 would work…I think

      • MamaCat says:

        Lo, I have not found anything yet, but then again I have not properly looked. It happens like this: I have a specific need that I cannot find in the shops eg. handbag…then I end up making it myself. I think I am way to nuts and fussy and I end up making things difficult for myself, hence I really do not like shopping.

        • Well…let’s reframe that and say you have high standards 😜 This is why the bullet journal is so great – though – completely customisable.

          But…. you should make a date with yourself one night (leave DH and DS home) and go browse the diaries at Exclusive Books.

  3. Kirstin says:

    I had to laugh as I also love the idea of a diary but the reality is a different story. I start well and then I forget… And yes; I am a P.
    I am a weekly planner and also like a monthly overview as well as place and space for notes and pottering around.
    Do I revamp my old Bullet Journal which still has enough empty pages or do I buy a new one…?! Decisions, decisions!;-)

    • Glad that resonated with you! If it doesn’t bother you to continue in your existing bullet journal, do so. I have this thing that I need to start fresh in January 😜

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