I love the planner community and paper planners, decorating, stickers, and making my daily to-dos look gorgeous. But recently I switched from paper planners to digital planners and there’s a ton of reasons it’s even better! So why digital planning? Let me break down a few of the reasons I love digital planners best:
Digital Planners Are Affordable
A physical planner costs around $40-70 and then there’s all the stickers, accessories, and washi tape. A pack of stickers is often around $10-20. It adds up super fast (anyone else always surprised by their total when they reach the checkout counter at Michael’s?)
By contrast digital planners and digital planner stickers are far more affordable. A digital planner is around $12-20 and then the sticker packs are around $6 and UNDER!
I’ve started making and selling sticker sheets for entrepreneurs, bloggers, network marketers, and influencers but my shop is in its infancy. You can see what I have so far here: DirectCreatives.Com There is a free download there for a planner and sticker sheet so you can test it out and see whether digital planning is for you!
And here are some of my favorite digital planner shops on Etsy:
- This is the planner I’m currently using, it has sections for social media planning and goals
- I absolutely love this set of self-care stickers with self-care bingo. I’m always struggling with ideas for self-care so this is perfect!
- Blogger girl clip art! So cute
- Office/work stickers. Must have for my frequent zoom meetings!
- Content creator set. This is more subdued and professional looking. I haven’t fully utilized all the cool stuff in here yet
Digital Planning Takes Up Less Space
I have a huge tote bag from Happy Planner that is filled with stickers, tape, pen, ruler, guides, and notebooks. With my digital planner I don’t need any of that. I slip my case in my purse and I’m carrying with me all the stickers and washi and pens that I own!
Speaking of pens, you don’t even need a stylus at all but I like having one. I picked mine up at Walmart. Even though my iPad is an older model and doesn’t have the “active” receptors for an active stylus, this active stylus still works great on it. Turns out you can use an active stylus on a passive tablet. And with that one stylus you have all the colors and thicknesses you could want of any pen!
Digital Planner Stickers are Reusable and Repositionable
You know what makes digital planning even more affordable? You can buy one weekly kit and use it over and over and over if you want to. The same stickers can be used again and again.
And if you don’t like where you placed something…you can reposition it! Hashtag Mind Blown. There are no mistakes in digital planning, everything can be redone as much as you want.
Adding Photos Is Easier With A Digital Planner
I guess people get devices to print out their pictures and paste them into a physical memory planner but there’s no way I would ever get around to doing that! I love that I can add pictures from the week directly from my camera roll into my planner.
Digital Planning Is Just As Cute!
Check out this adorable cover I got for my ipad (This one fits an iPad mini 2 but they come in all sizes). And I got a wrap from Etsy to make my stylus look like a number two pencil. So my planner is just as cute on the inside AND outside as any paper planner!
As you can see, it’s no contest for me! Once I found out that I could get beautiful and creative with stickers in a digital planner, I was all in.
Here’s what you’ll need to get started with digital planning:
- A device. I tried out digital planning on a very old Kindle tablet and I tried on my phone, but in the end I got a used iPad pretty affordably. I checked which version was the oldest one to still support the app I wanted to use (Goodnotes, see next point). That was the iPad Mini 2. I had turned my Kindle into an Android tablet but it is nearly ten years old so it just couldn’t handle the apps. Goodnotes is only available for iOS at the moment. The phone is fine, it’s do-able. But the tablet is nicer to be able to see better what you’re doing. The screen for the iPad mini 2 is just fine for me! It’s a little bit bigger than my Kindle, actually.
- A PDF Markup App. For android you can use Noteshelf or XoDo. I tried out Metamoji because I could get it on my PC laptop as well as my Kindle, but it isn’t supported by the developers anymore and it was not really working well. I do still use it on my laptop sometimes to do worksheets on, though. Nothing beats GoodNotes for usability in digital planning. And most sticker sheets you’ll find include a GoodNotes file that makes them super easy to use in your planner (see this video for how to use stickers in a digital planner–three different ways). So after trying a bunch of PDF markup apps I found it was worth buying a used iPad in order to use GoodNotes.
- A PDF planner and some stickers. Again you can download a free one from my shop to test out digital planning.
- Optional: A stylus, a case, and a screen protector are really nice things to have, though not strictly necessary. The screen protector that I got because it’s what everyone in the digital planning community raves about is the PaperLike. It creates a really nice subtle texture on the surface of the tablet so it feels more like writing on paper. I wasn’t sure of the size because I have such an old iPad but customer service was super responsive and kind and told me which one to get that almost fits perfectly. I had to trim a teensy bit. You saw my awesome case in the video above. As soon as I saw it I knew that was the one. I grew up in the 90s and I couldn’t resist the nostalgia of a case that looked like a real notebook. Bonus is the reviews say it looks so much like a notebook that people have had their cars broken into and their iPad left behind! Finally, the stylus that I’m using is this one from Walmart. It is $20 as opposed to $90 and up for an Apple Pencil!
The basics of digital planning walkthrough:
Frequently Asked Questions About Digital Planning
—> How do I use digital stickers?
Here is a video walkthrough of three ways to add digital stickers to your planner. If you have a Goodnotes file/sticker book, it’s nice and simple to use the lasso tool to copy a sticker from that tab and paste it into your planner tab. If you aren’t using Goodnotes you can open PNG files directly from your Google Drive or download them to your device to access with the image tool (I won’t tell you how long it took me to figure out that I sometimes have to scroll the toolbar to find the image tool!)
—> What Is A Widget?
I had trouble figuring this one out for a while. I’m used to a widget being the thing on your phone screen. But in the planning world a widget is a block of tracking that fits over a square in the planner (like habit trackers). That’s super hard to explain! Breezy Organization on Etsy is the master of widgets. Her planners are set up with boxes meant to be filled with their widgets.
I hope this answers all your questions about why digital planning is even more awesome than paper planning! Give it a try with my free planner and let me know what you think!
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