If you read here then you know I am a huge fan of the Erin Condren Life Planner, so I’m super excited about this post today.
I purchased my first Erin Condren planner in 2013 as a bit of a splurge and gift to myself as I was about to embark on the journey of completing my dietetic internship. I have always used a paper planner… I know we’re in the age of technology but a paper planner lets me see everything laid out in one place. I completely loved my EC planner back then and purchased a new one last summer. I wasn’t sure how much I would use it since I was in school but turns out I’ve cracked it open almost every day.
Erin Condren typically re-designs her life planners every year and releases a new design over the summer. How convenient is it that I spilled an entire 32oz. bottle of water in my tote bag last month and messed up my current planner? Coincidence? Divine intervention? Call it what you will.
Updates to the 2015-2016 Planner
Erin Condren always tweaks the new design off of what seems like customer feedback. Here are some of the highlights from the changes this year:
- Addition of a horizontal layout. This one is huge because prior to this year, the weekly layouts were only offered in a vertical layout. The reason I prefer my EC planner is because of the vertical layout, but I know many people like the horizontal. Now you can pick!
- A rose gold option (which sold out already… but is very pretty)
- New cover options: you can now create your own cover design or choose a ready-to-ship planner if you don’t want to wait for yours to be personalized.
- New 12-section page in the front of the cover possibly for monthly goals
- The weekly layout is still divided into sections, but they no longer have the ‘Morning, Day, Night’ subheadings.
- A lot of the ‘fluff text’ has been removed from the weekly planning sections to make more space for writing. I like it!
- There is an additional sheet of lined paper before each month. Perfect for making some extra monthly notes.
- There is now some graph paper at the end of the planner. I’m not sure I’d ever use graph paper but some may find this useful.
This is always the hardest decision for me! My first planner was the fleur feliz design and I chose the photo collage for my second planner. This time I knew I wanted to go for an inspirational quote, and I ended up with the watercolor shine design.
Also, I love opening the EC box for the first time! Everything is so pretty and colorful. The shipping materials are so high quality. None of my planners have ever been damaged during the shipping process. And honestly, opening the box is so fun!
So I stuck with the vertical layout because I’m a huge list-maker and the vertical works better for me. A lot of the planner is the same design as previous years with a few minor improvements.
I like the new addition of these little boxes in the front of the planner. They look like they could be used to list monthly goals. Maybe I should stick some blogging goals here?
The addition of lined paper before each month is perfect for a bit of extra space for monthly planning.
The monthly layout in the Erin Condren Life Planner is the best monthly layout I’ve come across in a planner (which is part of the reason I love this planner so much). There’s plenty of room to write on the calendar part, and the lined section to the right is a great place to make a list. I use the calendar section for my work schedule, and the lined section to manage my monthly finances.
I love the re-design of the weekly layout. The removal of the ‘fluff text’ makes the pages look a lot cleaner and less cluttered. You will see that each day is divided up into 3 sections… these used to say ‘morning, day, night’ and now there is no subheading. Here’s a picture of my old planner from last year to get an idea of what I’m referencing:
I LOVE that the section subheadings are removed because I never used them in the way they were listed. I typically use each section for work, home and blog. Here’s the new design:
I use the side column to write out weekly reminders or things that need to get done. My favorite part of the week is sitting down on Sunday and writing everything out…. I’m such a nerd
There used to be a monthly calendar up in the left hand corner of the page and now there is a little space to write a thankful thought. I love that idea!
The pocket in the back is great for storing paperwork. Anytime I print out something, I fold it in half and stick it back there for safe keeping.
There is also a zipper compartment in the back that is SO useful. I keep my RD registration card and license back there, as well as random things (like business cards). Erin Condren threw in some extra stickers, a clip and some referral cards. I like extra goodies.
Thoughts on the New Planner
I am really happy with the changes that were made this year. I think everything adds value to the planner and makes it even more enjoyable. I like all of the writing and inspirational quotes, but I think removing some if it has streamlined the planner and made it a bit more functional.
I always list a few things I would like to see changed in the future. I believe someone in Erin Condrenland takes these suggestions to heart because last year I said I wished they would delete the weekly subheadings- and they did My primary suggestion this year would be that they offer the option to purchase an academic year calendar that runs from June to June. Right now you can buy one that runs from June 2015 – December 2016 or a 12-month that runs from Jan 2016 – Dec 2016. It makes no sense to me why you would not offer a June 2015 – June 2016 option when you’re releasing the planner in June. With the way the options are right now, you are either stuck ordering the 12-month planner and not being able to use it until January, or you order a 16-month and still have 6 empty months left when the new planner is released in June. My suggestion would be to delete the 16-month option (it adds to the thickness anyway) and just offer June-June or Jan-Dec. Just my opinion!!
The question I get most often is if I think the Erin Condren Life Planner is worth the price tag, and my answer is always YES. Here’s why:
- The planner is a high-quality product. I explain a bit below but it is really durable.
- The size is perfect. Not too big, not too small.
- The layout of the EC planner is by far the most functional that I’ve ever come across. Tons of space for planning, making lists, taking notes and getting yourself organized.
- The paper is nice and thick so your ink will not bleed through the pages.
- The coil is sturdy. I toss my planner in my bag everyday and the coil has never come close to bending.
- This is the ONLY planner I have ever had that has not fallen apart over a 12-month period.
- There are tons of options for customizing your cover and choosing something that you really love.
Another random thought about the cost of the planner. I’ve always believed that it’s okay to splurge on things here and there if they will bring happiness to your life. I feel a lot more relaxed when I plan things out and have things organized, and my Erin Condren planner helps with that.
In previous reviews, I’ve been asked about shipping times. I’m sure this is entirely dependent on your specific order. I ordered my planner on June 14th with Fed-Ex ground shipping. The estimated ship date was June 26th but it actually shipped on the 19th (and was delivered on the 23rd). I customized my name on the planner but kept the standard colors, so maybe that helped expedite the process?
Hope you guys enjoy the planner as much as I do!
If you are thinking of ordering an Erin Condren product then I would love your support by using my referral link. Thank you so much for reading and supporting this blog!!!