One thing I hear on a pretty regular basis is the term “old school.” I may run an online business, but some of my coaching techniques are downright low-tech, maybe even retro.
But sorry, no break dancing.
My peeps get their first glimpse at my old school ways when I ask them to map out their goals and desires on one of my many self-development worksheets.
And if the reader forgets to read my FAQs, I’ll usually get an email saying, “Um, I can’t type my answers in your worksheet.”
I purposefully make all my worksheets and guidebooks un-editable PDFs because I strongly believe in the power of writing by hand. By sticking to my guns on this issue, I attract other old school folks who like to keep things clean and simple.
I always encourage my clients to keep hard copy planners, calendars, and journals too. Not surprisingly, some of my peeps feel a lot of resistance to this idea because their smart phones almost feel like extensions of themselves.
Kind of creepy when you think about it… Not creepy in an acid-washed jeans and neon high tops kind of way, but still weird.
You shouldn’t get rid of your phone, of course, but don’t make the mistake of believing that a phone can give you the same benefits as a hard copy planner with real pages that you can write on.
Here are my top reasons why your phone can never replace your planner.
It Helps You See the Big Picture (Literally)
I don’t care how big the screen on your phone is, there’s no way you get a good look at what’s coming up in the next week or month on that teeny tiny display. The worst part is those illegible truncated descriptions in the calendar where you have to click on each appointment just to read what it is.
When you’re planning your life’s goals and breaking down all the mini steps to move you in the right direction, you need the space to plan. I like to use a planner with standard full-size pages, extra sticky notes, plus a wall calendar so I can get the big picture view.
It Gives You the Benefits From Writing By Hand
When you write down what you want in your own handwriting, you take ownership of your results. There’s a lack of ownership when you’re simply tap-tap-tapping on a keyboard.
Time and time again, my clients reach their desired results when they see their intentions written by them. This is especially true if they sign their names on the paper. Writing by hand is a way for you to make a promise to yourself because there’s no denying that you wrote it.
A typed declaration buried in your phone’s note-taking app just doesn’t have the same impact.
It’s a Distraction-Free Zone
People love their phones because they can do it all—email, internet, games, texting, calling, and a million apps for anything you can imagine. But that’s exactly why a phone is not a good place to keep track of your to-do list, goals, and life plans.
The bells and whistles on your phone can distract you from what’s truly important. In contrast, a hard copy planner won’t start beeping with an unexpected email, and there are no pop-up ads to block your view.
I like to use the quiet time in the morning before everyone else has gotten up to go through my planner and set my intention for the day. There’s nothing to pull my attention away from my main priorities.
It Won’t Appeal to a Thief
Sadly, I know a few too many friends who have lost their phones or had them stolen. A smart phone is really appealing to a thief, but you don’t run that risk with a real planner.
Unless you’re writing research notes about a cure for cancer or you’ve got Justin Bieber’s phone number scrawled in your planner (why?), it’s unlikely that anyone would want to steal your planner. Who’d want something covered in someone else’s handwriting?
Those are my top reasons why you should invest in a hard copy planner instead of relying solely on your phone for keeping track of your life. I hope I convinced you even though I didn’t show you my outrageous 80s dance moves.
Do you use a hard copy planner?
In the comments below, share your best tips for planning your goals for the year.